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NUI Galway see off DIT to advance to first Sigerson Cup final since 2003

NUIG 2-12 DIT 0-15

14 February 2018; NUIG players celebrate following the Electric Ireland HE GAA Sigerson Cup Semi-Final match between NUI Galway and Dublin Institute of Technology at St Lomans in Mullingar, Co Westmeath. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
14 February 2018; NUIG players celebrate following the Electric Ireland HE GAA Sigerson Cup Semi-Final match between NUI Galway and Dublin Institute of Technology at St Lomans in Mullingar, Co Westmeath. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

NUIG, the second most prolific winners of the Sigerson Cup, advanced to their first final since 2003 when they held off a DIT comeback in heavy rain at St Loman’s GAA grounds in Mullingar.

But NUIG, who never trailed throughout the contest, held on for a deserved victory. Even the presence of Dublin star Brian Howard was not enough to swing this semi-final in favour of DIT.

NUIG led by 1-6 to 0-7 at the interval with Galway’s Sean Kelly getting a fine goal two minutes from the break.

DIT produced a good third quarter which saw them draw level at 1-9 to 0-12 but then Eoin Finnerty struck a huge blow for NUIG when he blasted home their second goal 12 minutes from time.

Corofin’s Kieran Molloy, who will miss Saturday’s final as he will be in action for his club in the All-Ireland semi-final, put NUIG four ahead but DIT got it back to two with points from Sean Hurley and Kilian O’Gara. Points from Enda Tierney and Adam Gallagher seemed to make the game safe for NUIG. However, NUIG had to endure a nervous finish when Conor Madden cut the gap to a goal for DIT.

But NUIG held out during six minutes of stoppage time to book their place in the final.

Scorers – NUI Galway: A Gallagher 0-4 (2f); S Kelly, E Finnerty 1-0 each; R O’Toole, E Tierney (1 ‘45) 0-2 each; P Cooke, O Gallagher, D Comer, K Molloy 0-1 each. DIT: S Hurley 0-4 (4f); C Loftus 0-3 (1f); K O’Gara 0-2; B Howard, S Dempsey, R O’Brien, C O’Reilly, T Corcoran, C Madden 0-1 each.

NUI Galway – T O’Malley; S Brennan, S Mulkerrin, K McDonnell; C Kelly, R Greene, G O’Kelly Lynch; C D’Arcy, P Cooke; E Tierney, O Gallagher, A Gallagher; B Donovan, D Comer, S Kelly. Subs: R O’Toole for S Kelly (32), K Molloy for Donovan (42), E Finnerty for O Gallagher (43), R Forde for C Kelly (48), J Maher for Greene (59).

Dublin Institute of Technology – L Stacey; A McGowan, B Power, R Shanahan; B Howard, R O’Brien, B Maher; T Corcoran, S Hurley; C Pearson, C Loftus, C Howley; C O’Reilly, D Kirby, S Dempsey. Subs: L Hughes for Dempsey (BC 22), K O’Gara for Corcoran (42), L Hughes for Kirby (42), B Brennan for O’Reilly (57), D McAllister for Dempsey (57), C Madden for Loftus (59).

Ref – A Nolan (Wicklow)

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