All Ireland Junior Football Final
Powerful second half for 5 in a row Kerry
Kerry 3-14 Galway 0-13
By Donal Barry
A fantastic second half performance by Jimmy Keane’s charges saw them complete five in a row All Ireland Junior Football Championships as they overcame Galway in O’Moore Park.
Indeed, if Kerry were completing their fifth it was Keane’s third as the Knocknagoshel man created yet another All Ireland winning team from scratch with last years winning team excluded from him.
The opening ten minutes were played at a blistering pace with the sides sharing 8 points having been level on 4 occasions as it was Galway with the impressive Gary Kelly opening up the Kerry backline at will.
Keane wasted no time in rotating both Brandon Barrett and Philip O’Connor to drop back and act as a sweeper in front of the Williamstown forward who was reduced to frees after that.
The sides would divide a further four points evenly between them before Kerry finally wrestled the lead for the first time when Stephen O’Sullivan fired over on the 25th minute with Daniel Daly securing a two point half time lead at the break with a 28th minute point.
Daly had created a goal chance out of nothing earlier when he took a quick free from the 21M deciding to fire for goal and not the point that was on offer. Cormac Heslam was more than equal to the effort pushing it wide for 45, which was put wide by Kerry Keeper Eoghan O’Brien
O’Brien too was called into early action as he had to be at his best to smother a 13th minute goal bound effort from Galway’s Colm Brennan but both goals stayed intact for the opening period.
It took Galway all of two minutes to wipe out the Kerry lead in the second half with Kelly from a free and then Kelly sent Sean O’Currin on his way with a clever pass as the half back levelled matters on the 32nd minute.
However just as it looked as if Galway would mount a serious challenge, enter the Kerry half back line of Foley, Breen and Brosnan, all of who were superb, all ending the game with a point each from play and more often than not made themselves available for the overlap. None more than Jack Brosnan who turned in a man of the match performance.
When Kerry got their first goal on the 34th minute, there was more than a little luck attached as Barry O’Dwyer’s punched effort dipped below the bar but with the on rushing touch from Conor Costello it went over the line. After a minute’s consultation the goal was awarded.
A few seconds later Stephen O Sullivan fired over his third point of the day to give Key their biggest lead 1-9 to 0-8 and in truth the never looked back with further goals arriving from O’Sullivan (40th minute) and replacement James Crean (55th minute) who benefited from a Jack Brosnan run.
Stephen O’Sullivan would finish the day with 1-4 and a booking for not having a mouth guard, an eventful afternoon for the Templenoe man
Philip O’Connor climbed the steps to accept the Cup in front of a large gathering of Kerry support, mostly made up from friends and family with a large travelling group from Cordal.
Kerry Scorers: Stephen O’Sullivan 1-4, James Crean 1-0, Own Goal Conor Costello (Galway) 1-0, Eoghan O’Brien 0-2 (0-1F, 0-45F), Daniel Daly 0-2 (0-1F) Jack Brosnan 0-1, Mike Breen 0-1, Michael Foley 0-1, Philip O’Connor 0-1, Thomas Lynch 0-1, Caolim Teahan 0-1
Galway Scorers: Gary Kelly 0-8 (0-4F), Lorcan Molloy 0-2, Sean Denvir, Padraic O’Donnell, Sean O’Currin
Eoghan O’Brien, Cian O’Murchu Padraig O’Connor, Padraig Jackie O’Sullivan, Jack Brosnan, Mike Breen, Michael Foley John Mark Foley, Nathan Breen, Philip O’Connor, Chris Farley, Brandon Barrett, Stephen O’Sullivan, Daniel Daly, Barry Dwyer
Subs: Caolim Teahan for Chris Farley (36), James Crean for Barry O’Dwyer (45) Thomas Lynch for Brandon Barrett (56), Gerald O’Sullivan for Daniel Daly (58), Fionan Clifford for Cian O’Murchu (59), John Spillane for Jack Brosnan (60)
Cormac Haslam, Eddie O’Sullivan, Dara O’Ruairc, Thomas Rabbitte, McDara Geraghty, Enda Tierney, Padraic O’Donnell, Alan Molloy, Johnathan Ryan, Sean Denvir, Conor Costello, Thomas Gleeson,Padraic Eoin O’Currin, Colm Brennan, Gary Kelly
Subs: Sean O’Currin for Enda Tierney (BC) 6 mins, Lorcan Molloy for Thomas Gleeson (35), Enda Concanon for Dara O’Ruairc (45) Conor Brady for Padraig Eoin O’Currin (56) Aongus O’Hiarnan for Sean O’Currin (58) Ger Gibbons for Johnathan Ryan (64)
Referee: Martin McNally (Monaghan)