Tannian stars as Galway take Offaly apart

IARLA TANNIAN and Galway produced a tour-de-force as they crushed 14-man Offaly in a one-sided Allianz NHL Division 1 encounter at blustery O’Connor Park yesterday.

Tannian used his power and skill effectively as he chalked up an impressive six points from play and tormented a beleaguered ‘Faithful’ rearguard throughout.

“A productive day at the office but we won’t be losing the run of ourselves,” said Galway boss John McIntyre after his side ran up 1-24 for a second consecutive week.

“Obviously Offaly being reduced to 14 men made our job a good bit easier. We’re persecuted with injuries and Ger Mahon looks as though he’s had serious ankle trouble, Tony Regan went off with a groin strain and we’re already down eight or nine players and it’s really stretching our resources to the limit.”

Offaly’s chances of keeping the contest competitive were dealt a sucker punch late in the first-half as midfielder Cathal Parlon was a shown his second yellow card for a clumsy challenge on Andy Smith. Parlon picked up his first yellow in the fourth minute after he and Ger Farragher squared up.

The dismissal appeared a harsh call by referee Barry Kelly who dished out four yellow cards during a scrappy conclusion to the opening half, at the end of which Galway led 0-9 to 0-5.

The plight of the home side was compounded as full-back David Kenny didn’t re-appear for the second-half because of a knee injury and Galway outscored their disjointed opponents 1-15 to 1-5.

Indeed, Offaly’s goal, from a deflected Joe Bergin 21m free, came with virtually the last strike.

Offaly boss Joe Dooley is fearful his side are heading towards relegation.

“We’re crippled with injuries (Paul Cleary, Derek Molloy, James Rigney, Daniel Currams, Joe Brady, Rory Hanniffy & Conor Mahon were unavailable) at the minute but that’s no excuse for the performance.

“It’s a bad day at the office and if we hurl like that we’ll be in Division Two. I wouldn’t make any excuses.

“We have four games in March and we need to be winning two of them, as simple as that, if we want to stay up so it’s going to be a battle.”

The hosts had first use of the strong wind yet were on the back-foot from the throw-in as Tannian and dead ball specialist Ger Farragher each landed a pair of points, 0-4 to 0-0 with 9 minutes elapsed.

The hosts enjoyed their most productive spell at this stage and scores from Joe Bergin, Cathal Parlon and Shane Dooley (’65) saw them reduce the arrears to the minimum, 0-4 to 0-5.

With Dooley struggling for accuracy with his frees, Galway gained a firm stranglehold and they reeled off the next four points courtesy of three Farragher frees and Tannian. Dooley converted an injury time free leaving it 0-5 to 0-9 at the break.

The controversial Parlon dismissal meant Galway corner back Gerard O’Halloran was able to mop up unchallenged and the tempo for the bulk of the second half was fairly pedestrian and three minutes into the new half Galway put the issue beyond any doubt as Tannian’s inch perfect cross-field pass was snapped up by Aongus Callanan who rifled a close range strike to the twine.

Galway were in cruise control for the remainder of the match, and their point taking was sublime. After 53 minutes they led 1-13 to 0-9, and they rattled off ten unanswered points through Johnny Coen, Tannian (2), David Burke, Eanna Ryan (4), Adrian Cullinane and a speciality Farragher sideline cut.

Scorers for Offaly: J Bergin 1-4 (1-2 frees), S Dooley 0-3 (0-1 free & 0-1 ‘65), C Parlon, M Cordial, B Carroll 0-1 each.

Scorers for Galway: G Farragher 0-8 (0-6 frees, 0-1 ‘65 & 0-1 sideline cut), I Tannian 0-6, E Ryan 0-4, D Burke 0-3, A Callanan 1-0, A Cullinane 0-2, J Coen 0-1.

Subs for Offaly: M Cordial for Brady (26), M Verney for Kenny inj (half time), O Kealey for Bermingham (half time), J Mulrooney for Wynne (46), G Healion for Dooley (64).

Subs for Galway: D Hayes for Mahon inj (43), N Healy for Og Regan (48), N Cahalan for Coen (59), K Kilkenny for Callanan (63), B Murphy for Burke (67).

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