Boston Shamrocks 6-12 Tir na nOg 0-6
Tir na nOg needed a result in their final game to earn a semi-final place, but it was a tall order for the ladies from Brighton as they met an on-form Shamrocks side. There was some hope for Tir na nOg in the first half as they played some good football, however two Shamrocks goals at the start were bookended by a third at the end of the half, and the on-fire Shamrocks pushed home their advantage in the second period to knock their opponents out of the championship.
|Despite battling hard Tir na nOg could not come up with the win|
to prolong their season.
The Shamrocks stormed out of the gates following the throw in and before there was time to settle into the seats there was a seven point gap between the teams. Kelly Boyce-Jordan and Sarah Jane McDonald each netted as the Tir na nOg defence was carved open. The Shamrocks forward line looked sharp and well honed, carving up the Tir na nOg defence, and after the first 5 minutes one wondered if they could be slowed down. A whitewash looked like it was on the cards.
The red and black settled and came into the game, plugging away at the coalface. Chloe Ryan was a sure shot in the full forward line and tallied four points, one a lovely effort from a tight angle with the magic right boot. The team linked well from the backs and had the gap down to four points, but that Shamrocks front 6 kicked in just before half time and a late run yielded a goal from Caoimhe Murray and an Aoife D’arcy point, to see the Shamrocks to a comfortable 3-5 to 0-6 lead.
|Danielle Pugh in possession for Tir na nOg.|
The second half saw the gap between the teams grow as the Shamrocks took a tight grip on affairs. A few early misses were eventually translated into scores. Points from McDonald and Cunningham were followed by a goal from corner forward Maria Bannon and at that point it would be a battle for pride for the Brighton team as the curtain closed on the 2016 season.
Niamh Daly, Christine O’Neill, and Emma Connolly kept the fight up but with the Shamrocks alert to every stray pass or 50-50 ball the lead would not be dented in any meaningful way. As the Shamrocks half back line mopped up and started attacking moves, a fifth goal was netted by Murray to rub the salt in the wound. The Shamrocks will meet Connacht ladies in the final the last Sunday in August and it promises to be a keenly contested affair with the reigning champions eager to halt the Shamrocks tide.
Shamrocks: T. Dooley, C. McEleaney, L. Larkin, B. Maguire, K. Goyce-Jordan, M. Collins, M. Hogan, L. McCrystal, L. Kiernan, R, Mongan, S. McDonald, A. D’arcy, M. Driscoll, A. Cunningham, M. Bannon. Tir na nOg: A. Curran, A. McKenna, R. Stapleton, M. Murphy, C. Murphy, C. O’Neill, N. Daly, M. Sayers, D. Pugh, S. Callaghan, E. Connolly, E. Barno, N. Crowe, C. Ryan, F. NiBhriain.
By Rory O'Donnell