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Thursday 23 November 2017

Shield finals in many grades

Amid all the G.A.A. action around the county on Saturday, a couple of ladies' football shield finals were also down for decision.

In fact, the Junior 'B' shield decider between near neighbours Glynn-Barntown and Crossabeg-Ballymurn served as the first part of a triple-header at St. Patrick's Park.

And it was the more experienced Over The Water players who took spoils by 2-16 to 2-8 to reclaim this particular piece of silverware for the first time since 2013.

Crossabeg-Ballymurn started like a steam-train, building a 1-3 to no score lead after two minutes, with their goal tucked away by Tara Dunne after only 40 seconds.

But Glynn-Barntown battled back impressively, eventually levelling at 1-4 apiece by the twelfth minute, with Jessie Morrissey finding the net. However, Crossabeg-Ballymurn proceeded to outscore them by 0-4 to 0-2 before the break to establish a 1-8 to 1-6 advantage.

And they systematically pulled away thereafter, and led by seven before Glynn-Barntown were given a lifeline through a converted Clara Wallace penalty five minutes from time.

However, any hope they gleaned from that spot-kick was immediately evaporated when substitute Laura Bury goaled from her first touch as Crossabeg-Ballymurn prevailed. 

Elsewhere, Oylegate played host to the Intermediate shield final between Kilanerin and Shelmalier.

Shelmalier have been a dominant force in the game in recent times, but their second team were always playing second fiddle to a Kilanerin side which scored four goals in the first-half.

Indeed, despite Shelmalier building an early lead, the north county ladies responded through goals from Shanyn McLaughlin and Mary Jo Lawless to build an advantage they wouldn't subsequently surrender.

Lawless and Róisín Osbourne added further goals to the victors' tally as they broke holding a 4-3 to 0-4 lead at the interval.

Ailis Neville pegged back a goal for Shelmalier, and Chloe Neville converted a penalty late on, but Méabh Hughes dominated the scoreboard in the second-half, notching 2-5 (three frees) with her goals coming in quick succession to confirm a 6-8 to 2-4 triumph.

Ballymurn was the venue for an Under-14 double-header, with the curtain-raiser being the Division 2 shield final between HWH-Bunclody and St. Brigid's, with the Carlow border girls having too much firepower for the seasiders.

After some close opening exchanges, two quick-fire Bunclody goals from Rachel Kehoe and Muireann Doyle gave them a 2-3 to 0-3 interval lead. And the leaders increased their advantage when Doyle goaled again in the third quarter.

Ava Murphy pegged a point back for St. Brigid's but Bunclody sealed the deal as Rachel Kehoe fired home, while Doyle completed a fantastic hat-trick to secure a 5-5 to 1-3 win despite a gallant effort from the losers. 

Next up was the Division 1 shield final between St. Martin's and Kilmore, where the Piercestown and Murrintown crew ran out comfortable 5-8 to 2-7 victors.

Lauren McLoughlin twice goaled on the way to completing a hat-trick by the end of the game.

Nell Bates responded with a goal for Kilmore but St. Martin's strengthened their position through goals from Aoife O'Connor and McLoughlin again to establish a 4-5 to 1-3 ascendancy at the break.

An opportunist goal from Hannah White reduced Kilmore's deficit, although Imogen Deas cancelled that out to make sure of the spoils for St. Martin's.

Meanwhile, there was also a double-header in Farmleigh, where Clonard/Volunteers took on Shamrocks in a high-scoring Division 4 shield final.

Shamrocks overturned a half-time deficit to take the spoils by 5-6 to 4-7. Saoirse Dwyer was the star for the Enniscorthy girls, with her tally of 3-1 getting them over the line.

But they were asked severe questions by the Clonard/Volunteers girls in the first-half, by which stage they broke holding a 2-6 to 2-1 advantage, with Emer O'Connor twice goaling for the Wexford town side.

Ailbhe White and Ailbhe Cullinane also goaled after the break, but ultimately the scoring prowess of Codie Dunne (1-3), Hannah Dunne (1-0), Jessica Owens (0-1) and Emma Nolan (0-1) saw Shamrocks dramatically turn the tables and take home the spoils. 

The Division 3 shield final pitted Taghmon-Camross against Castletown, where the north county girls eased to a 1-10 to 0-3 victory.

Midfielders Priya O'Toole and Aoife Byrne ruled the roost throughout as Castletown built up a 1-4 tally by half-time. Their goal was finished by Aloysia Weekes following a well-worked move.

Taghmon had points from Alisha Deery, Catherine Hayes and Laura Banville, but the victors finished strongly through O'Toole, Weekes, Alyssa Cronin-Keating, Orna O'Shaughnessy (two) and Saoirse Weekes to secure a commanding 1-10 to 0-3 win.

Wexford People

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