Heartache for Mayo's Tooreen as Monaleen edge past them in All-Ireland final
There was heartache for Tooreen in this evening's AIB GAA All-Ireland club intermediate hurling championship final as they were edged out by Monaleen, the Limerick and Munster kingpins winning on a scoreline of 1-17 to 1-15.
Backed by a big number of supporters in Croke Park, the east Mayo club started the game magnificently, keeping Monaleen scoreless for 12 minutes, and were two to the good at the break, leading 1-9 to 1-7.
But the Limerick men, with Donnacha Ó Dálaigh to the fore, came with a strong final quarter, and once they went ahead on 54 minutes, Tooreen couldn't reel them back in.
Ó Dálaigh scored five points overall in a virtuoso second-half display, while Mark O'Dwyer also shone for Monaleen, scoring 0-7 overall (including four frees).
Tooreen's great start saw saw some excellent scores from Shane Boland and Seán Regan but a goal from Dan Power after industrious effort by Andrew La Touche Cosgrove levelled the game, against the run of play.
The Mayo men were far from rattled, however, and while O'Dwyer kept Monaleen on their coattails, a Tooreen goal before half-time put them in the ascendency.
The goal materialised after Eoin Delaney won possession off a long free and spotted Liam Lavin free in front of goal. The half-forward finished expertly, making it 1-9 to 1-7 at the break.
Early second-half points from Delaney and Shane Boland stretched the lead to four but gradually Monaleen turned the screw, Ó Dálaigh coming more into the game after moving to the edge of the square.
Eventually the Limerick lads reeled Tooreen in and overtook them, and despite the best efforts of the likes of Cathal Freeman, Fergal Boland and Sean Kenny, it was defeat at the end on the day – but what a journey the men from east Mayo took their supporters on.
Tooreen: B. Douglas; C. Henry, M. Morley, O. Greally; D. Kenny (0-1), S. Coyne, J. Boyle; S. Kenny, F. Boland (0-2); L. Lavin (1-1), D. Huane, C. Freeman (0-3); S. Regan (0-2), S. Boland (0-4, 2f), E. Delaney (0-2).
Subs used: K. Feeney, G. Nolan.
Monaleen: J. Power; S. Griffin (0-1), B. Canny, J. Porter; L. Morrison, L. Lyons, R. Lyons; J. Fitzgerald (0-1), L. McHale; D. Ó Dálaigh (0-5), M. O’Dwyer (0-7, 4f), A. La Touche Cosgrave (0-2); D. Power (1-0), E. Doyle (0-1), L. Murphy. Subs used: D. Maloney, E. O’Driscoll.
Referee: C. Cunning (Antrim).