DCU Capture their first O Connor Cup

DCU capture the O Connor Cup


DUBLIN City University captured the prestigious O’Connor Cup for the first time in the competition’s history as they edged out former winners University Limerick in a thrilling final played at Jordanstown on Sunday.

The Ladies Football Colleges final weekend ended in fitting fashion with a riveting decider as DCU, appearing in their very first final, secured a dramatic 2-11 to 1-13 victory at the home of UUJ.

DCU, coached by former Dublin star Angie McNally, saw off the challenge of last year’s winners UUJ in Saturday’s semi-final by 2-8 to 0-11 as UL came through on the other side, coming good in another extra-time encounter by 2-14 to 3-7 against Queen’s University Belfast.

Fiona O’Connor was the semi-final star for DCU as the goalkeeper saved an injury-time penalty to send her team through to the final while Brona Sheridan also excelled against UUJ.

The newly-crowned champions knew they would face tough opposition from 2007 winners UL in the final but they responded with two first half goals to lead by 2-5 to 0-7 at half-time in a well-attended O’Connor Cup final.

Mayo star Fiona McHale, who returned from suspension for the UL clash, was fouled in the 15th minute and from the resultant penalty, Dublin’s Lyndsey Davey made no mistake.

Three minutes before half-time, Cavan’s Roisín O’Keeffe netted DCU’s second goal but a crucial goal from Galway native Gillian O’Connor eleven minutes after the restart hauled UL right back into contention.

Points from Geraldine O’Flynn, Fiona Rochford and Eimear Considine levelled the scores at 2-8 to 1-11 at the end of normal time before the sides swapped points in the first period of extra-time.

In the second period, Davey and Monaghan’s Ciara McAnespie raised white flags to provide a matchwinning platform for DCU, as O’Flynn’s response for UL cut the gap to just a single point at the finish.

Davey was the scoring heroine for DCU with a 1-4 haul while the McAnespie twins from Monaghan, Ciara and Aoife, also played key roles.

DCU’s semi-final victory against UUJ marked a first defeat in 17 months for the hosts and interestingly, the victorious DCU team contained seven Ulster players.

Elsewhere, St Mary’s of Belfast are celebrating a very first Lynch Cup success after defeating DIT 4-13 to 2-7 in yesterday’s final.

Tyrone’s Joeleen Donnelly, who celebrated her 21st birthday last week, landed six points against DIT while Armagh’s Sinéad Finnegan and Down’s Gráinne McClean hit two goals each.

In the O’Connor Shield decider, Laois ace Noreen Kirwan bagged seven points from play and was named player of the match as NUI Maynooth comfortably defeated IT Tralee by 2-16 to 0-6.

The Jordanstown pitches were in immaculate condition for the various competitions and the finals were refereed by respected intercounty referees Keith Delahunty (Tipperary), Liam McDonagh (Sligo) and Eugene O’Hare (Down).


Saturday, 28th March

O’Connor Cup Semi Finals

12.00pm          QUB 3-7 V UL 2-14 (after extra-time).

2.30pm            UUJ 0-11 V DCU 2-8

Lynch Cup Semi Finals

11.00am          DIT 2-8 v UCD 2-4

1.00pm            ST. Mary’s 2-11 V Liverpool Hope 0-6

Lynch Shield Final

4.45pm            DCU 2 6-3 v TCD 2-7

Donaghy Cup & Shield Final

1.30pm            QUB 2 3-7 v RCSI 1-11 (Cup final).

3.45pm            UCD 3 2-11 v ITT/ITB 7-6 (Shield final).

Sunday 29th March

12.00pm       Lynch Cup Final

St Mary’s 4-13 DIT 2-7

1.45pm         O’Connor Shield Final

NUI Maynooth 2-16 v IT Tralee 0-6.

3.30pm         O’Connor Cup Final

DCU 2-11 UL 1-13 (after extra-time).

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