Galway needed penalties to beat Mayo in atrocious weather conditions in MacHale Park last Saturday afternoon to qualify for the Connacht Under-20 Championship semi-final next weekend.
Dónal Ó Fatharta’s side outscored Mayo 3-2 in the shoot out to remain on course to win back-to-back titles.
The two sides went blow-to-blow in normal time, with Galway nailing a 61 st minute equaliser through wing back Cathal Sweeney, despite being down to 14 men after Tomo Culhane was sent off for a second yellow card.
Matthew Tierney’s goal in extra time looked to have won it for Galway, but man of the match Paul Towey – who hit nine points – fired over from 55 plus yards out to send the game to a shoot out.
The win for Galway now sees Mayo’s winless streak against them in the under-20/under-21 grade extend to eight years, having last recorded a championship win over the Tribesmen back in 2012.
Mike Solan’s Mayo had the gale force wind at their backs in the first half lead by 0-8 to 0-2 when the short whistle sounded, despite hitting seven wides.
Towey hit four excellent points (one free) in that half for Mayo, along with a brace from Frank Irwin (1 free), one from Paddy Goldrick and a mark from James Jennings.
Galway were limited to only three attacks in that half but returned two points through Nathan Grainger and Tony Gill.
That score was reversed in the second half, with Tomas Gill (2), Tierney (2 free), Matthew Cooley, Ryan Monaghan and a late equalising score from Cathal Sweeney sending the game to extra time. Towey hit Mayo’s two scores in the second half.
However, it will be Galway who face Leitrim in next Saturday’s Connacht Championship semi-final.
J McNicholas; J Coyne, D McBrien, L Tunney; A McDonnell, R Brickenden, E Hession; P Goldrick (0-1), J Carney; C Gavin (0-1, 1f), F Irwin (0-2, 1f), O Mullin; J Jennings (0-1, 1 m), M Moran, P Towey (0-9, 3f).
K Callaghan for Irwin (30 mins); J Mahon for Jennings (42 mins); P Lambert for Moran (48 mins); A Barrett for Gavin (72 mins) ;P Chambers for Brickenden (76 mins).
C Flaherty; J McGrath, S Fitzgerald, J Glynn; C Monaghan, T Gill (0-3), C Sweeney (0-1); C Raftery, J McLaughlin; A Greene, M Tierney (1-2, 2f), P Kelly; N Grainger (0-1), T Culhane (0- 1), M Cooley (0-1).
R Monaghan (0-2) for Greene (39 mins); E Mannion for Grainger (47 mins); M Geraghty for Cooley (55 mins); O Gormley for Raftery (71 mins); J Kirrane for Sweeney (78 mins); D Whelan for Cooley (80 mins).