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Record-breaker Lally leads big medal haul for Galway athletes

John McIntyre

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ALANNA Lally, Galway City Harriers, stole the show with two outstanding performances and two gold medals at the Woodies DIY All-Ireland Juvenile Indoor championships held in the Athlone IT Arena.

Competing in the U18 800m, Lally finished almost seven seconds clear of her rivals as she crossed the line in a time of 2:13.83 to beat Arlene Smith’s 1991 time of 2:13.9 for a new championship best. On the previous day, she also won the U18 400m in a time of 55.87, again a new CBP to top the 57.3 of Arlene Smith in 1991.

Maebh Brannigan of GCH won her first national title in the under 17 girls 1500m. She ran a superb race leading from the gun and had 20 metres to spare at the finish winning in a time of 4 minutes 58 seconds. She also won a silver medal in the 800m

Evan McGuire, GCH, proved his status as a top class 400m runner, winning the under 19 boys 400m in a great time of 49.97 seconds. Cillin Greene GCH was another first time national title winner. He ran away from the field in the second half of the under 16 boys 200m, in a time of 23.58.

Laoise Geraghty, GCH, made an excellent debut at the national indoors, winning the under 13 girls 600m in fine style in 1. 44.70. Laura Ann Costello, GCH’s star sprinter, won medals in three events – she took a silver medal, running 7.76 seconds in the under 17 girls 60m, then a bronze in the 60m hurdles before Costello had her best performance of the weekend in the 200m, knocking .3 of a second off her PB, running a quality 24.98 seconds for silver.

Elisabeth Maher, also of GCH, proved that hard work pays off when she claimed a deserved bronze medal in the under 18 girls 400m, behind her clubmate Alanna Lally in a PB of 60.55 seconds.

Athenry AC had two medallists in Evan Quirke, who secured bronze in the long jump, and Brandon Lee in the 600 metres after he claimed an U13 All Ireland silver medal in an excellent time of 1.42.46.

Craughwell’s Damien O’Boyle won two silver medals in the U17 800m and 1500m, with clubmate Paul Joyce winning silver in the U19 event, and Nicholas Sheehan finishing runner up in the U18 walk and 400m. Other Craughwell medallists were Michelle Duggan, Tara McNally, Chris O’Connor and Diarmuid Prendergast.

Galway results – 60m, U12 Girls: Debbie Taiwo 8th (GCH); U16 Girls: Tara McNally 3rd (Craughwell); U17 Girls: Laura Ann Costello 2nd (GCH), Sinead Treacy 5th (Craughwell); U19 Girls: Mairead McCann 6th (Craughwell); U12 Boys: Robert Mc Donnell 8th (GCH); U17 Boys: Conor Duggan 6th (Craughwell); U18 Boys: James Mitchell 7th (GCH).

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Galway golfer takes top prize in German Boys Open

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CONNEMARA’S Luke O’Neill shot a final round 70 for a total of 11-under par to win the prestigious Allianz German Boys Open at Golf Club St Leon Rot over the weekend.

The Ballyconneely native, son of Connemara professional Hugh O’Neill, held off the challenge of Philipp Katich to win by a single shot. O’Neill held a two stroke lead going into the final day, after recording rounds of 69 and 66 over the opening two days before holding his nerve to claim victory. The Allianz Germany Boys Open is regarded as one of the top three boys golfing events in the world.

Katich, playing on his home course, pushed O’Neill all the way and moved to the top by the 12th hole, thanks to an excellent front nine performance, which included an eagle and two birdies.

Not panicked, O’Neill kept his composure and that ultimately proved to be the catalyst for his victory. The 13th and 14th proved disastrous for Katich. The German, who recently won French Boys Open, had a bogey on the 13th, before finding water on the 14th and eventually posting a triple bogey 7. O’Neill, meanwhile, birdied 14.

Another German, Felix Krammer, entered the conversation for victory as he sensationally struck a seven-iron shot for a hole-in-one at the par-3 13th.

Read full report in this week’s Tribune Sport.

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Galway duo Mulkerrins and Heffernan bid for world glory

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GALWAY ace Martin Mulkerrins will lead the Irish team at the 2018 World Handball Championships which are starting this week in Minnesota.

And the current national senior champion is joined on the Irish team by fellow Galwegian, Niamh Heffernan from Claregalway, in a total playing party of 13.

Moycullen’s Mulkerrins will be competing in the Men’s Open event while Heffernan should be a strong contender for the Girls 17U World title.

Multi-talented Heffernan, who also plays camogie at County level, previously took home gold medals from Calgary, Canada in 2015. A rising star of the game, it’s little wonder that she qualified for Team Ireland.

Another Galway member is Frances Curran, Michael Breathnach’s, who is traveling Stateside as Team Ireland Liaison Officer.

According to Mulkerrins, this year’s Men’s Open singles field at the World Handball Championships is so strong that it will be a case of kill or be killed!

Now aged 25, he took gold at the 2009, 2012 and 2015 Worlds as a juvenile, and captured his maiden All-Ireland senior singles title back in March. This time around he will be competing against the USA professional players in his bid for the World glory.

The blue riband Open Singles draw is stacked with quality and, says Mulkerrins, the player who can marry consistency with aggressive shot-making will be the one crowned champion.

“I would consider myself an offensive player, I would go for the kill if it’s a 50-50 call. “I think especially in tournaments like this, with a round of 32 and an extremely tough round of 16, you don’t want to be in that court any longer than you have to.

“With the speed of the American courts and their ball, I don’t think too many players will be adopting a defensive style. I see it as a tournament where we are going to see a lot of low, hard power play and players looking to finish games quickly,” he said.

See full coverage in Tribune Sport.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and  county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Hanniffy out as Galway take on the Dubs in quarter-final

Stephen Glennon

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GALWAY’S senior camogie team will be looking to bounce back from their final round group defeat to Kilkenny when they face Dublin in a tricky All-Ireland quarter-final assignment at Pairc Uí Chaoimh, Cork on Saturday evening (7:15pm).
Following victories over Clare, Waterford and Limerick, Galway had looked to seize the automatic semi-final berth against Kilkenny last day out and for three quarters of that contest they were certainly in a good place to achieve this.
Indeed, they had the Cats in all sorts of bother early on with Ailish O’Reilly, in particular, looking dangerous up front. However, with Kilkenny using sweeper Anne Dalton to good effect and Galway struggling to by-pass this defensive mechanism, the National League champions swung the tie in their favour to take the win on a 1-17 to 0-13 scoreline.
While the margin of defeat will have frustrated manager Cathal Murray, there were still enough positives in the performance to give rise for optimism ahead of this weekend’s knockout game against Dublin. “There was plenty of positives but we were just disappointed with the last 20 minutes to be honest with you,” says Murray.
“We kind of threw in the towel a small bit but we now have to look for a response against Dublin, who won’t be bad. So, all round, we need to improve. There is not just one area really but we do need to get a performance to get ourselves back on the road again. Dublin, though, will be no pushovers.”
Unfortunately, Galway have been hit with a setback with the news that Oranmore/Maree full-forward and goal threat Niamh Hanniffy looks set to miss the rest of the campaign with a knee-ligament injury. “Niamh is a massive loss to us,” confirms Murray. “It is disappointing in fairness.
“We also have a few more injured at the moment. Sarah Dervan, Becky Hennelly and Caitriona Cormican are all carrying knocks. Look, they will probably be okay but, at the moment (early in the week), they are unable to train.”
Injuries aside, it is unlikely Galway will digress too far from the side which did lose to Kilkenny. Sarah Healy will start between the posts with captain Dervan, Tara Kenny, Lorraine Ryan and Heather Cooney backboning the Tribeswomen’s defence.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and  county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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