Annaghdown stopped Moycullen’s bid to claim successive promotions in an absorbing Galway Ladies' Intermediate Championship final in Monivea on Saturday.
Annaghdown, who finished 2-9 to 1-10 winners, had smidgen of luck when Nicola Burke’s point was called back for a foul on the Annaghdown number 13, and Grainne Barrett’s free dipped into the top corner of the net, putting Annaghdown 1-5 to 0-4 in front.
Annaghdown, having suffered heartbreak in the 2014 and 2015 intermediate deciders, had led 0-5 to 0-4 after a mundane first period. Annaghdown, playing against the breeze, dropped Niamh Duggan and Burke back into their half-back line, and it was a point from Burke which concluded the scoring for the half. Moycullen recovered well following Barrett’s goal, as Niamh Thornton rattled off two points and Galway minor captain Aine McDonagh then brought them to within a point.
Former county star Duggan picked out Rachel King for Annaghdown’s second goal in the 47th minute, and Duggan again showed her class when she hit a free from 40 yards to give Annaghdown a 2-8 to 0-7 cushion a minute later. Moycullen, however, struck a goal from sub Megan O’Donnell in the 59th minute ensuring an exciting finish.
Duggan pushed Annaghdown four in front again a couple of minutes later, and despite two Moycullen points and a late missed goal opportunity, Annaghdown held out for the victory to represent Galway in the Connacht Championship.
Annaghdown: MK Killilea (joint capt ); J Burke, B Quinn, F Wynne; Chelsie Crowe, Chloe Crowe, T Fahy; E Coyle, N Duggan (joint capt, 0-2, one free ); N Comer, G Barrett (1-3, 1-2 frees ), A Scully; N Burke (0-1 ), R King (1-2 ), E Keane. Subs: C McCarthy (0-1 ) for Keane (16 mins ); K Forde for Comer (45 mins ); R Naughton for Scully (53 mins ).
Moycullen: R Conneely; E Molloy, S O’Connell, J Hynes; G Flaherty, E Carter (capt ), L Corcoran; A McDonagh (0-1 ), A Davoren; K Carter (0-1 ), N Thornton (0-4 ), A Corcoran; A Duggan, M Hynes (0-3, two frees ), C Connaire. Subs: E Donohue for Duggan (h/t ); M O’Donnell (1-0 ) for McDonagh (57 mins ); S Keady for A Corcoran (60 mins ).