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Mon 16-Jul-2007 20:12
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The Women's Pitch
Clare give Cork a fright
Match Report Munster U-16 A Championship Semi-Final
Date: July 10th
Venue: Churchtown, Co. Cork.
Referee: Mike Meade (Limerick)
Clare 3 – 8 Cork 4 – 10
An outstanding Clare performance gave reigning champions Cork the fright of their lives in this thrilling Munster U-16 A championship semi-final played in Churchtown, Co. Cork. Cork, who are undefeated at this level in Munster for over five years, had to call on all their reserves of experience and indeed the in depth strength of their panel to see off a very brave Clare challenge.
Cork were fortunate in most aspects of this game – not least in facing a Clare side with two key players absent due to family holidays – but also in winning the toss and having the very significant wind advantage for the first period.
With the wind advantage Cork attacked from the outset but faced a very gritty Clare rearguard for whom Laurie Ryan and Niamh Cavanagh in the full back line were outstanding and goalkeeper Rebecca Smyth also showing tremendous form. The scoring eventually opened with a Cork point in the eight minute from Orlagh Farmer which was followed two minutes later by another score from Claire Keohane. A big blow to Clare came in the fourteenth minute when full forward Ciara Sherlock had a fortuitous goal with the Clare keeper Smyth unsighted. Sinéad O’reilly then had another point for the eventual winners to leave them ahead 1 – 3 to no score on the quarter hour.
Niamh O’Dea then opened Clare’s account from a free on seventeen minutes after Niamh herself had been fouled. Two minutes later Clare were back in the match when Cooraclare’s Sinéad Moloney buried the ball in the Cork net after being put through by O’Dea. Unfortunately for Clare almost immediately from the kick out Cork swept downfield and Claire Keohane netted for the Rebel side. This score was a major blow to Clare coming as it did just when they had hauled themselves back into contention. Cork added four more points before the break to Clare’s one – another O’Dea free to leave the half time score 2 – 7 to 1 – 2 in Corks favour.
Clare started the second half in determined fashion and had points on thirty two, thirty seven and thirty eight minutes from Niamh O’Dea, Naomi Carroll and Emer Considine to narrow the gap. Cork replied a minute later however with another shattering blow when Áine O’Leary cut through for a third goal which they quickly followed up with another point. Niamh O’Dea steadied the ship for the Clare girls with a point before Cork again netted with an Aoife Scally effort. Clare thundered back with a goal and a point from Emer Considine to keep on Cork’s heels. Louise Woods and Naomi Carroll then narrowly missed goal chances before Emer Considine and Cork’s Yvonne Cahill traded points. Cahill had another point for Cork before Considine again netted for Clare but time was against the Banner county side and referee Mike Meade soon signalled full time.
Clare now progress to a Munster B Final encounter with Tipperary or Waterford and hopefully onwards in the All Ireland B series. Clare lost nothing in this defeat and all the team played magnificently. In defence goalkeeper Rebecca Smyth was outstanding as were Laurie Ryan, Niamh Cavanagh, Louise Woods and Catherine Danagher. Up front Niamh O’Dea and Naomi Carroll did well and Emer Considine excelled when introduced as a substitute late in the first half.
Clare: Rebecca Smyth (Cooraclare), Ciara Harvey (West Clare Gaels), Laurie Ryan (The Banner), Niamh Cavanagh (The Banner), Louise Woods (The Banner), Catherine Danagher (Wolfe Tones), Shonagh Enright (The Banner), Sally Glynn (Cooraclare), Eimear O’Connor (Coolmeen), Rachel Garry (Cooraclare), Sinéad Griffin (Miltown), Niamh O’Dea (The Banner), Clodagh McNeilis (Fergus Rovers), Naomi Carroll (The Banner), Sinéad Moloney (Coolmeen).
Subs: Emer Considine (Kilmihil) for Rachel Garry, Lisa Loughnane (Clooney-Quin) for Ciara Harvey, Aoife Davoren (The Banner) for Sinéad Griffin, Rachel Ryan (Shannon Gaels) for Aoife Davoren.
Scorers: Emer Considine 2 – 3, Niamh O’Dea 0 – 4, Sinéad Moloney 1 – 0, Naomi Carroll 0 – 1.
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