IT Sligo emerged victorious yesterday (Thursday) from a battle of two college sides that recently competed in the Connacht FBD league when they defeated GMIT on a full time score line of 3-13 to 2-7 in Tuam Stadium.
GMIT operated out of section “B” of the Connacht League and despite being managed by the former Galway footballer and manager Val Daly they were not expected to do well after shipping heavy defeats against Benny Guickan’s Leitrim and the Sligo football team.
For at least a while yesterday they put those disappointments behind them to race into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead after the opening ten minutes. Padraig Mc Gourty, the current IT Sligo,coach had previously worked with Shane Ward in the Leitrim management set up for the last two years, and he slowly watched his side take a grip of proceedings as the game advanced.
James Shaughnessy and Joseph Donnellan exchanged first half goals as the game started to open up. The men from the yates County began to assert some authority by registering their second three pionter through Bryan Walsh after 16 minutes and this score was followed by points from Walsh and Robbie Smyth which helped the visiting side into a 2-5 to 1-6 half-time lead.
Sligo IT had played Roscommon, NUIG and Mayo in section “A” of the FBD league and despite a mixed sequence of performances in those matches the experiences obviously stood to them as they moved their performance up a notch in the second half.
The men from the North West had the wind advantage for the second-half and despite being reduced to fourteen men after 28 minutes following the dismissal of Philip Neilan for a second yellow card, they replied with the perfect response to that setback and registered their third goal thanks to Jamie Brennan in the 45th minute to set them up for victory.
Ray Murtagh, Rob Gorman and Cathal McGettigan all registered points from play to ensure the visitors’ nine-point winning margin.
Elsewhere Garda College defeated Cork IT by 0-8 to 0-3 in a low-scoring affair.