Monday 19 March 2018

Marren masterclass stuns Galway

Sligo 2-14 Galway 0-15

JOHN FALLON Connacht SFC semi-final

Kevin Walsh saw his native Galway crash out of the Connacht Championship as Sligo created a huge shock in the sunshine at Pearse Stadium last night.

Sligo produced a superb second-half comeback and deservedly book a place in the final against either Mayo or Leitrim.

Full-forward Adrian Marren led the way, crashing home two goals in the second half on his way to a man-of-the-match display and a haul of 2-6.

Sligo, with David Kelly a late call-up, hit back after a bright Galway start but they trailed at half time by 0-9 to 0-5.

Sligo got on top in midfield at the start of the second half with Shane McManus impressive and Marren reduced the margin with another fine point.

That really inspired Kevin Walsh's men and then McManus slipped forward and was content to take a point from a good goal chance, with efforts from Kelly and a '45' from Marren levelling the game at 0-9 each after 45 minutes.

Galway drafted in Michael Meehan and Padraic Joyce and they edged back in front after 49 minutes when Conroy ended 18 barren minutes for the Tribesmen with a point.

But Alan Costello restored parity from the right after a superb crossfield pass from Marren. It got better for Sligo after 54 minutes when they were awarded a penalty after McGovern was fouled by Galway skipper Finian Hanley.

Marren kept his nerve to slot the penalty into the bottom corner to make it 1-10 to 0-10.

Galway hit back with a free from Hehir and then Sice landed another to leave just a point between them after 62 minutes. But Sligo replied with Kelly producing a moment of magic to fire over a point.

A good run from Gareth Bradshaw ended with Conroy reducing the margin to the minimum with six minutes remaining, but once more Sligo hit back with Hughes putting two between them after a run by McManus.

And then Sligo ended the contest when Costello found Marren in space and he slipped the ball into the net with four minutes remaining.

Scorers -- Sligo: A Marren 2-6 (1-0 pen, 0-1f, 0-1 '45); A Costello 0-3 (1f); D Kelly 0-2; M Breheny, S McManus, P Hughes 0-1 each. Galway: M Hehir 0-7 (6f); G Sice (3f), P Conroy 0-3 each; S Armstrong, M Meehan 0-1 each.

Sligo: P Greene; N Ewing, J Martyn, R Donovan; C Harrison, M Quinn, P McGovern; S McManus, E Mullen; A Costello, P Hughes, B Egan; D Kelly, A Marren, M Breheny. Subs: T Taylor for Mullen (45); D May for Hughes (70); J Davy for McGovern (70).

Galway: A Faherty; K McGrath, F Hanley, K Kelly; G Bradshaw, J Duane, G O'Donnell; J Bergin, G Higgins; G Sice, D Burke, T Flynn; S Armstrong, P Conroy, M Hehir. Subs: M Meehan for Flynn (42); G Sweeney for Kelly (46); P Joyce for Burke (53); C Forde for Hanley (57).

Referee: M Deegan (Laois).

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