Maigh Cuilinn 1-10 Salthill/Knocknacarra 1-09
Maigh Cuilinn captured their second Galway SFC title in three years when a late goal from Peter Cooke snatched victory in a tense final at Pearse Stadium.
They were made battle all the way by John O'Mahony's Salthill/Knocknacarra but came good when it mattered most in front of a crowd of around 6,000.
And unlike two years ago when they won their maiden title during Covid, thousands of Maigh Cuilinn supporters were on hand this time as they claimed the Frank Fox Cup.
Salthill/Knocknacarra led by 1-05 to 0-06 at the break despite playing against the strong wind but they too failed to make it count when it was in their favour in a game that was delayed by ten minutes to allow the large crowd to enter.
Salthill/Knocknacarra got a huge boost after five minutes when wing-back Daniel O'Flaherty went forward and his shot dipped into the right corner of the net after the two captains Rob Finnerty and Dessie Conneely had exchanged points.
The Maigh Cuilinn response to the goal was superb and they hit four points in just over three minutes with Galway captain Sean Kelly, Moycullen skipper Conneely, Peter Cooke and Owen Gallagher finding the target.
Salthill/Knocknacarra played good possession football and made their chances count with Finnerty taking his opening half total to 0-04, two from play, and his county teammate Tomo Culhane pointing a free before the break, with the only Maigh Cuilinn score in the closing 21 minutes of the half coming from centre-back David Wynne.
SUNDAY'S GAA RESULTS AND REPORTS
Two pointed frees from Conneely levelled the sides after 49 minutes and the sides twice exchanged points before Nolan looked set to steer Salthill/Knocknacarra to their fourth title when he landed two superb points.
But there was still time for a final twist when he connected with Gallagher's high ball to spark off huge celebrations who won their first title during Covid two years ago.
Maigh Cuilinn: Andrew Power; Cian Dein, Neil Mulcahy, Conor Corcoran; Eoghan Kelly, David Wynne (0-01), Michael Moghan; Peter Cooke (1-01, 0-01f), Tomas Clarke; Ger Davoran, Sean Kelly (0-01), Paul Kelly; Michael O'Reilly, Owen Gallagher (0-02), Dessie Connelly 0-05, 4f).
Subs: Aidan Claffey for Dein (h-t), Neil Walsh for Davoran (47), Conor Bohan for O’Reilly (61).
Salthill Knocknacarra: Ruairi Lavelle, William Finnerty, Gearoid Armstrong, Eoin McFadden; Cathal Sweeney, Eoin Deeley, Daniel O Flaherty (1-00); John Maher, Mikey Culhane; Donie Hunt, Evan Murphy (0-01), Sean O Leidhinn (0-01); Brian Conlon, Tommo Culhane (0-01f), Rob Finnerty (0-04, 2f).
Subs: Charlie Power for B Conlon (44), Evan Nolan (0-02) for Hunt (44), Matthew Thompson for S O Leidhin (52), Paddy Kitt for M Culhane (59).
Referee: Martin Flaherty.