Wednesday 17 January 2018

Clinical Corach claim cup glory

Seven-minute burst crucial

Jason Goodison

Sinéad O'Connor of Corach Ramblers receives the cup from Barry Dempsey
Sinéad O'Connor of Corach Ramblers receives the cup from Barry Dempsey
Nellie Walsh receives the player of the match from Barry Dempsey
The all-conquering Corach Ramblers crew
The beaten finalists from St. Joseph's

A clinical strike force and a scintillating seven-minute period during the first-half fired Corach Ramblers to victory in the Boland Carpets Cup final against St. Joseph's in the All Blacks grounds on Sunday.

Corach Ramblers 4 St. Joseph's 1

The prolific Nellie Walsh had a hand in each of her side's goals, scoring twice to secure Corach's final glory.

The encounter began with an air of nervousness that comes with any decider. Walsh saw her first speculative effort flash wide of the post from distance, while the saints' Emer O'Leary will feel aggrieved that nobody got on the end of her dangerous whipped free-kick.

A goal was needed to break the ice in Mayglass and duly Ramblers answered the request with their best period of football, scoring three times in just seven minutes to stun and effectively kill off their Kilmuckridge opponents.

Walsh thundered home from 25 yards initially before the forward was picked out by the intelligent pass of Amy Eustace, finishing into the same bottom left corner she had graced moments earlier.

Five minutes later, the ball was in the back of the net again, courtesy of Corach's finest piece of build-up play of the three.

Triona Sinnott engineered a one-two with Walsh before playing a pass across the box to the goal-hungry Sinéad O'Connor who was waiting to tap in past the beaten Molly Carelton.

Despite solid defending from sweeper Tracey Sinnott, Joseph's were granted a gilt-edged chance just before the interval which they needed to capitalise on.

Louise Hammel's free fell at the feet of Aoife Kavanagh who blazed her effort agonisingly over the crossbar from ten yards out.

If there was any suggestion of a fightback, that was removed within four minutes of the re-start. Triona Sinnott finished low after being the benefactor of Walsh's defence-splitting pass.

As the Carrig-on-Bannow side's foot began to come off the pedal, Michelle Gahan found an opening in the previously impenetrable defence and finished on her second attempt, narrowing the margin to three.

St. Joseph's, invigorated and still believing that a turnaround was possible, threw everything they had at their opponents and almost had the ball in the net just four minutes after their first.

Lisa Johnston found Kelsey Reid racing in, and the latter's shot beat the 'keeper but rolled painfully across the goalmouth and wide as Corach closed out the game from there with a comfortable three-goal cushion.

Corach Ramblers: Val Redmond; Ellie Diskin, Jennifer Martin, Tracey Sinnott, Leanne McGrath; Triona Sinnott, Amy Eustace, Sara Byrne, Sara Myler; Nellie Walsh, Sinéad O'Connor. Subs. - Olivia Scott for Myler (67), also Mary Qurike, Anna Lezsana, Nicole Sinnott, Katie Whelan.

St. Joseph's: Molly Carelton; Sarah Walshe, Louise Hammel, Aoife Kavanagh, Laura Dunne; Michelle Gahan, Lisa Johnston, Róisín Murphy, Aine Roche; Emer O'Leary, Kelsey Reid. Subs. - Laura Warren for Roche (37), Paula Lyons for Hammel (66), Anna Hamill for Johnston (84), Orla Keane for Dunne (86), Rebecca Justice for Warren (89), also Hannah Brady, Chloe Breen-Kavanagh, Orla Murphy.

Referee: Seamus Doyle.

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