Kilkerrin Clonberne Retain Galway Crown

Galway LGFA Senior Championship Club Final

Monivea, Saturday September 10th, 6pm

Kilkerrin/Clonberne 1-12 vs 1-9 Claregalway

 

Kilkerrin/Clonberne remain the undisputed kingpins of Galway club football, but leaving Monivea last Saturday evening as light began to fade, you got the sense that Claregalway’s time will come.

A relatively young team with other underage players to break through in the next few years, Claregalway ran Kilkerrin/Clonberne to three points after losing by 15 in the 2015 decider. It wasn’t enough to stop Kilkerrin/Clonberne edging to a fourth county senior title in a row, though the knee injury captain Annette Clarke sustained in the second period will give the management team a few worrying nights in the lead-up to the Connacht Championship campaign.

Both teams went hell for leather in a physical contest. There was a plethora of stoppages in the second period, a clash of heads between Deirdre Brennan and Chloe Miskell in the 44th minute forcing a prolonged halt in play. All of this meant referee Frank Kineen added 13 minutes to the clock at the end of normal time.

A Charlotte Cooney goal in the sixth minute of injury time brought the score back to 1-11 to 1-9 and ensured the final minutes were nervy for Kilkerrin/Clonberne. Olivia Divilly cut swathes through the Claregalway defence at times, and it was she who put the seal on the Kilkerrin/Clonberne win with her eighth free in the 70th minute.

Claregalway took the game to their heavily fancied opponents from the throw-in and three frees from Galway U16 player Andrea Trill helped them into an early 0-4 to 0-1 advantage. Kilkerrin/Clonberne went 23 minutes of the half without scoring, Annette Clarke bridging that gap after 27 minutes, and a Nicola Ward goal before the half-time whistle meant it was Kilkerrin/Clonberne who led 1-3 to 0-5 as the teams headed for the changing rooms.

Kilkerrin/Clonberne play a game dependant on having players running hard off the shoulder. Olivia Divilly, Nicola and Louise Ward all won frees in the second half from going straight at the Claregalway defence, frees which were converted by Divilly. The Galway county player nailed seven points in the half in total, six coming from placed balls, and even allowing for Cooney’s late goal, Kilkerrin/Clonberne did enough to win. The standout performers for Kilkerrin/Clonberne were Olivia and Siobhan Divilly, Caoimhe Boyle, Claire Dunleavy, Louise and Nicola Ward; and best for Claregalway were Deirdre Brennan, Charlotte Cooney, Andrea Trill, Orla Murphy and Fabienne Cooney.

Kilkerrin/Clonberne: L. Murphy, A. Costello, S. Gormally, E. Flanagan; C. Costello, N. Ward (1-0), C. Boyle; A. Clarke (Capt, 0-1), S. Divilly; O. Divilly (0-9, eight frees), L. Gannon (0-1), L. Ward; C. Miskell, K. Finnegan, C. Dunleavy. Subs: L. Walsh for C. Costello (blood, 24-31 mins); L. Walsh (0-1) for C. Costello (half-time); AM Finnerty for Clarke (36 mins).

Claregalway: R. Horkan; K. Dowd, E. Gavin, O. Dixon; A. Glynn, F. Cooney, O. Murphy; S. Gavin (0-1), M. Glynn; C. Moran, E. Glynn, D. Brennan (0-4, three frees); A. Gavin (0-1), C. Cooney (1-0), A. Trill (0-3, three frees). Subs: T. Hession for Moran (half-time).

Referee: Frank Kineen.

 

Galway LGFA Intermediate Championship Club Final

Monivea, Saturday September 10th, 4pm

Annaghdown 2-9 vs 1-10 Moycullen

 

Beaten in 2014 and 2015, Annaghdown made it third time lucky in Intermediate finals on Saturday in Monivea.

Moycullen made them fight all the way in an absorbing second half contest and on small margins do games often swing. Annaghdown were handed a smidgen of good fortune a minute into the second half when Nicola Burke’s point was called back for a foul which had been committed on the Annaghdown number 13. Grainne Barrett’s free off the deck dipped into the top corner of the Moycullen net, placing Annaghdown 1-5 to 0-4 in front.

Annaghdown had led 0-5 to 0-4 at the interval after a fairly nondescript first period defined by defensive systems. Annaghdown, playing against the breeze, dropped Niamh Duggan and Burke back into their half-back line, and it was a point from Burke which concluded the scoring for the half. Moycullen recovered well following Barrett’s goal, as Niamh Thornton rattled off two points and Galway minor captain Aine McDonagh then brought them to within a point.

Former county star Duggan picked out Rachel King for Annaghdown’s second goal in the 47th minute. Duggan again showed her class when she struck over a free from 40 yards to give Annaghdown a 2-8 to 0-7 cushion a minute later. Moycullen didn’t lie down though, a goal from their sub Megan O’Donnell in the 59th minute ensuring that an exciting finish was in store.

Duggan pushed Annaghdown four in front again a couple of minutes later, and despite two Moycullen points and a late missed goal opportunity, Annaghdown held out for the victory which means it is they who will represent Galway in the Connacht Championship. Best on the day for Annaghdown were Niamh Duggan, Chloe Crowe, Rachel King, Erin Coyle, Bronagh Quinn and Nicola Burke; while Aine McDonagh, Niamh Thornton, Ailbhe Davoren, Sandra O’Connell and Jean Hynes played well for Moycullen.

Annaghdown: MK Killilea (Joint Capt); J. Burke, B. Quinn, F. Wynne; Chelsie Crowe, Chloe Crowe, T. Fahy; E. Coyle, N. Duggan (Joint Capt, 0-2, one free); N. Comer, G. Barrett (1-3, 1-2 frees), A. Scully; N. Burke (0-1), R. King (1-2), E. Keane. Subs: C. McCarthy (0-1) for Keane (16 mins); K. Forde for Comer (45 mins); R. Naughton for Scully (53 mins).

Moycullen: R. Conneely; E. Molloy, S. O’Connell, J. Hynes; F. Flaherty, E. Carter (Capt), L. Corcoran; A. McDonagh (0-1), A. Davoren; K. Carter (0-1), N. Thornton (0-4), A. Corcoran; A. Duggan, M. Hynes (0-3, two frees), C. Connaire. Subs: E. Donohue for Duggan (half-time); M. O’Donnell (1-0) for McDonagh (57 mins); S. Keady for A. Corcoran (60 mins).

Referee: John Martin.

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