Limerick Institute of Technology 2-15
NUI Galway 0-13
LIMERICK Institute of Technology have reclaimed the Fitzgibbon Cup after winning an entertaining final against NUI Galway by 2-15 to 0-13 at Dr Cullen Park in Carlow.
The Davy Fitzgerald and Cyril Farrell managed LIT have now know the Third Level senior hurling championship two times in the last three years.
Garryspillane’s Maurice O’Brien was the only Limerick player in the starting line-up for the Moylish College.
Kilmallock’s Gavin O’Mahony and Richie Murphy and Killeedy’s Cathal Mullane were also in the LIT squad.
LIT were captained by Cork senior Kieran Murphy and the team also included Kilkenny’s All-Ireland winning captain Jackie Tyrell, Tipperary seniors Conor O’Mahony, Shane McGrath and Alan Byrne, Clare seniors Jonathan Clancy and James McInerney and Galway senior Iarlaith Tannion.
Inspired by Galway teenage sensation Joe Canning, the Limerick side started the stronger and following two points from the lively forward and a quick goal from Aonghus Callanan, they found themselves 1-2 to 0-1 ahead and that was 1-4 to 0-2 by the quarter-hour mark.
This was in part due to the skill of both goalkeepers, as with both sides awarded penalties, David Woods and James Skehill both saved the danger. The save by LIT's Skehill probably proved the bigger blow as Canning led his side in at the break, 1-5 to 0-5 in the ascendancy.
After the restart, Canning continued to damage the Galway side and when he added a second goal for LIT, it looked like that was that.
However, credit the Galway team, who used the remainder of the third quarter to stage a spirited comeback and Daragh Egan and Finian Cooney sent points over as the gap was reduced to 2-11 to 0-12.
But, Canning proved the difference and despite another late point from Egan, two scores from the Portumna ace completed his total of 1-8 and sealed an eight-point win for LIT.
LIT qualified for Saturday’s final with a 1-16 to 2-9 win over the University of Limerick in the semi final.
UL, with Ger Hegarty in their management team, had no Limerick player in their team.
LIT: J. Skehill; M. Walsh, J. Tyrell, A. Byrne; S. McGrath, C. O'Mahony, M. O'Brien; J. Clancy, K. Murphy; E. Cadogan, A. Murphy, I. Tannian; A.
Callanan, J. Canning, J. McInerney.
Meanwhile, there was a strong Limerick representation on the IT Tralee team that won the Ryan Cup.
The Kerry team is managed by Limerick senior hurler Brian Begley, although he was absent for their 2-14 to 3-9 win over UUJ as he is on honeymoon.
Limerick’s 2005 minor star Eoin Ryan was the hero for Tralee.
The Kilmallock man scored a toal of 1-11 (10frees).
He was joined in the team by fellow Kilmallock men, Stephen Heffernan and Liam Hurley, Bruree’s James O’Brien, Effin’s Nicky Quaid and Kildimo’s Eoin O’Brien.