Monday, July 14, 2014

July 12 - Ladies Senior Football: Connacht Ladies v Tir na nOg

Connacht Ladies 4-5 Tír na nÓg 2-14

Tír na nÓg made it two out of two in the Ladies senior football championship.  The Brighton side rode the wave of a highly impressive first half performance to the final whistle, while the reigning champions find themselves without a win half way through the championship.

Tir na nOg made it two for two on Saturday evening.
Shauna Jackson in the middle of the field was the key to Tír na nÓg's brilliant first half.  Jackson was the playmaker and the link for many of the smooth passing moves that saw the Brighton side to a 10 point half time lead.  At one point, Jackson split the posts with a 45 yard free that would be the envy of players of any stripe.  Full forward, Jenny Byrne, also made her mark.  The former Irish international soccer player goaled early and was also comfortable in the role of scorer and provider. 

Of course, it was not all down to these two.  Connacht Ladies found themselves up against a solid wall of defenders on most forays into opposing territory, and managed a total of 3 scores over the first half hour.  Goals came from balls over the top into Jackie McDonagh and Catriona Smith, each player finished well.  Catriona Foley accounted for the solitary point.  Scorers for Tír na nÓg included Ciara O'Connor with a goal, and points from Caroline Nee, Tessa Mullen, and Lisa Leonard.  At the break it was a 2-11 to 2-1 lead for the Brighton team.

Things turned somewhat in the second half as Connacht Ladies made a game of it and reduced the deficit to a single score by the end of the game.  In fact, it was Tír na nÓg who mustered just three scores in the second period as Connacht Ladies inched closer.  Sinead Greene was full of energy this half and carried her side for much of the way.  Green netted early in the half.  Catriona Smith followed with a point and Tír na nÓg tried to stem the tide.   Catriona Foley then capitalized on a situation where the referee appeared to have awarded a penalty, and changed the decision to a free.  Before the defence had time to settle the ball was in the net.  There was just three points in to coming into the final few minutes, however, with numbers helping out in defence, Tír na nÓg held on to record a second win.      

Connacht Ladies:  C. Heraty, K. Cunningham, A. Egan, S. Polly, C. Mulgrew, J. Conroy, R. Croul, C. McDonald, S. Greene, L. Mullen, C. Foley, J. McDonagh, J. Ward, A. Kerr, C. Smith.  Tír na nÓg:  N. Hynes, E. Healy, L. Brick, A. Potts, N. O'Neill, A. Taylor, N. Daly, J. Moore, S. Jackson, L. Bergin, C. Nee, T. Mullen, L. LEonard, J. Byrne, C. O'Connor.

By Rory O'Donnell

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