Kildare beat Cavan in a thriller

Competition: Suzuki National League, Division 2 Quarter Final
Venue: Radley Park, Leixlip
Date: Sunday 13/04/2003
Time: 3 PM Kildare 3 – 14 Cavan 2 – 7
Score at Half Time: 1-11 to 2-0

Kildare are back in a League Semi-Final after missing out last year when losing in a quarter-final to Cavan by a point. This time, the Lillies made no mistake, taking full advantage of home venue to record a fine ten point win.

Kildare had a dream start. Maria Moolick won the throw-in, played a one/two with Tracy Noone and shot over inside twenty seconds. A minute later, Deirdre Gately pointed and, from the kickout, Maria Moolick won possession, careered through and blasted to the net.

Deirdre Gately and Grainne Heduan added points but, in Cavan’s first serious attack, Margaret McCormack was penalised for a block on Emma Clarke and Cavan had a penalty. Margaret saved the tame enough effort from Aisling Doonan but Cavan won the clearance and Emer O’Reilly crashed in a goal from close range. Brianne Leahy then made a great run from her own half to point for Kildare and immediately Aisling Lambe set up Athgarvan clubmate Tracy Noone for Kildare’s sixth point. Cavan wing forward, Grainne Smith, then got away on the right wing and floated the ball over Margaret McCormack for Cavan’s second goal. All this inside a hectic fourteen minutes. I

n the next two minutes, Maria Moolick and Tracy Noone were dragged down as they ran at the Cavan defence and Tracy punished both fouls, neatly pointing the frees and, on eighteen minutes, Antoinette Mooney became the sixth Kildare player on the score sheet with an excellent point. Both sides then made their first personnel changes, Simone Gilabert replacing Yvonne Murphy on the Kildare team and Cavan brought on Carmel Rogers at midfield for Ciara O’Reilly.

Cavan came more into the game, bottling up the Kildare attack and putting pressure on the Kildare defence but seemed obsessed with goals and Margaret McCormack was forced into two smart saves. Kildare weathered the mini-storm thanks to solid full back Ann Hughes, well supported by Edel Delaney, Kate Leahy and Julie Cunningham and finished the half with two points, the first following a length of the pitch move, started by Therese Martin who caught in her own square and found Kate Leahy. Brianne carried on the move and played in Deirdre Gately for an inspirational point. a Deirdre immediately set up Grainne Heduan for the point that put Kildare 1-11 to 2-0 at half time. The question then was would the lead be sufficient when facing the wind in the second half Cavan made the early running on the restart but where repulsed by great fielding and clearances from Ann Hughes and Maria Moolick. Kildare lost Emma McCartney to injury after thirty four minutes but Brianne Leahy drove through for a great point after thirty five minutes to stretch the Kildare lead to nine points. Cavan eventually took advantage of the strong wind and got their first point in the thirty ninth minute when Aisling Doonan pointed a free and they introduced Breda Smith and Aisling Trainor to attack.

Cavan points followed from Grainne Smith and Aisling Trainor but Kildare responded with a well worked Simone Gilabert point and, on fifty minutes, Simone combined with Antoinette Mooney who dribbled past two defenders and side footed a goal. Now 2-13 to 2-3 in front, Kildare seemed to relax and Cavan had four points in a row from Aisling Doonan, another free, Grainne Smith with two and Elaine Costim on the hour but just as it started to look as if Cavan might be in with a chance, Kildare hit back. Grainne Heduan won the ball in the middle and via Brianne Leahy and Simone Gilabert, it went to Deirdre Gately to pot point number fourteen and then Simone raced through to fire in a goal as Dublin referee Tony Lennon was about to call time.

Cavan had good performances from goalkeeper Orla Smith, Michelle Cole, Ciara Gray and Maria Smith in defence, Emer O’Reilly and sub Carmel Rogers at midfield and half forwards Grainne Smith, Aisling Doonan and Elaine Costim but the full line could never breach the strong Kildare full back line.

Margaret McCormack gave a solid display in the Kildare goals, making a couple of smart saves and being generally alert and was unfortunate to be forced off by injury. Her replacement, Carol Keogh, was equally competent as Cavan made their late burst. Edel Delaney and Ann Hughes excelled at the back with Ann’s fielding under pressure always immaculate and Therese Martin was solid in the left corner. Half backs Kate Leahy and Julie Cunningham were also prominent while Brianne Leahy had her usual stormer at midfield but was outshone early on by partner Maria Moolick who, after a brilliant first half, started the second half in similar fashion but tired. Tracy Noone, Grainne Heduan and sub Simone Gilabert ran the Cavan defence at every opportunity and took their chances while Deirdre Gately and Antoinette Mooney showed all their guile in the full line of attack.

Scorers Kildare: Antoinette Mooney 1-2, Maria Moolick 1-1, Simone Gilabert 1-1, Deirdre Gately 0-3, Tracy Noone 0-3 (0-2 frees), Grainne Heduan 0-2, Brianne Leahy 0-2

Scorers: Cavan Grainne Smith 1-3, Emer O’Reilly 1-0, Aisling Doonan 0-2 (frees), Elaine Costim 0-1

Kildare: Margaret McCormack Edel Delaney Ann Hughes Therese Martin Aisling Lambe Kate Leahy Julie Cunningham Brianne Leahy (0-2) Maria Moolick (1-1) Tracy Noone (0-3) Grainne Heduan (0-2) Emma McCartney Deirdre Gately (0-3) Antoinette Mooney (1-2) Yvonne Murphy
Subs Played: Simone Gilabert (1-1) for Y. Murphy(19 mins) Sharon Conway for E. McCartney(34 mins) Carol Keogh for M. McCormack (inj) Leah Purcell for M. Moolick Nicola Cunningham for A. Mooney(59 mins)

Cavan: Orla Smith Ann Hanratty Michelle Cole Onida McBride Pamela Crowe Ciara Gray Maria Smith Emer O’Reilly (1-0) Ciara O’Reilly Grainne Smith (1-3) Aisling Doonan (0-2) Elaine Costim (0-1) Emma Clarke Eitne McGovern Mary Fitzpatrick Subs Used: Carmel Rogers for E. O’Reilly(19 mins) Breda Smith for Eitne McGovern(40 mins) Aisling Trainer (0-1) for Mary Fitzpatrick(40 mins) Referee: John Lennon, Dublin Report By: Tom Ryan

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