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2024 TG4 All-Ireland Finals tickets

TYRONE JUNIOR FOOTBALL FINAL

LADIES FOOTBALL

TYRONE JUNIOR FOOTBALL FINAL

OMAGH ST ENDAS 3-6

CAPPAGH 4-6

Horrendous weather conditions failed to dampen what turned out to be a classic Tyrone junior final at Greencastle last Friday between local rivals Omagh St Endas and Cappagh. In the end it was Cappagh who got their hands on the Brenda Logue memorial cup after a dramatic climax to a quality game of football. Both teams performed well, Christiane Hunter a powerhouse for Omagh nullified the threat of ace Cappagh attacker Clodagh Poyntz while Tracey Wallace held the upper hand at midfield for Cappagh. The referee played his part too, but for both benches perhaps for the wrong reason, some challenges went unpunished while some of his decisions baffled both teams and the big crowd that braved the elements.

In the end the final kick of the game sealed the win for Cappagh, St Endas keeper Laura Smyth kicked the ball out only as far as Aishling Porter and she dinked the ball over the keepers head to secure the title.

GREAT OPENER FOR OMAGH

It had been a intringing battle that had twists and turns throughout and from the first seconds it was evident that this was going to be one of those games, Omaghs Chriatiane Hunter opened the scoring from the throw in , she collected and drove over within seconds Omagh were four up, Jenny McCrossan beat goalkeeper Paula Quinn from close range. All that in the opening forty seconds. Cappagh steadied and Clodagh Poynz managed to knock the ball on to Kathryn Sweeney who drilled to the net and within seconds they were level, Poyntz, for the only time in the entire sixty seven minutes got away from Hunter and pointed.

Omagh had their chances too though and Quinn redeemed herself with a fine save from McCrossan although Colleen McCullagh marked her return to Tyrone football with a well taken point moments later, a goal perhaps at the back of her mind.

END TO END

Terri McCusker raised the green flag again for Cappagh though on twelve minutes, the nippy half forward ghosted inside to beat Smyth, who again was caught out. Again though within minutes it was level. Veteran Michaela O Neill and Sinead O Neill pointing for Omagh who also squandered some good possession in front of goals.

Cappagh were always a threat in front of goal in this opening half as the breeze prevented much in the way of long range efforts and their persistence was rewarded on 26 minutes when Tracey Wallaces speculative effort again beat keeper Smyth.

It was nip and tuck but Omagh finished the half in dogged fashion, firstly Hunter and key performer once again all over the park hit her second point and just on the short whistle Sinead O’Neills long ranger caught keeper Quinn out and the ball found the Cappagh net to leave the half time score 2-5 to 3-1 in Omaghs favour.

CAPPAGH BOUNCE BACK

The Ballinamullan side started brightest in the second half, Wallace levelled and Poyntz latched on a close range free kick in the opening ten minutes. However with the scoring threat of Poyntz nullified by Hunter Cappagh were forced into a reshuffle, Megan Martin was introduced up front and linked up with the earlier introduced Aishling Porter as they tried to get the better of Kerry O Neill and Emma Nugent.

Omagh hit a purple patch though and from the 11th to the 24th minute of the half controlled things but a tally of only 1-1 in that period told its own tale. Terri McCullaghs great run down the right produced the opening for Jenny McCrossan who drove to the net from 14 metres out and a Michalea O Neill free opened a three point gap again. A Terri McCusker point closed that gap though while Tracey Wallace who was having a good game at midfield pointed from play and Clodagh Poyntz from a free pulled Cappagh level again on 29 minutes.

The game seemed to be drifting towards a replay, Omagh had chances, McCrossan saw her goalbound effort skittled away while O ‘Neills free kick went off course. Controversy though at the death, the referee failed to indicate clearly to the fourth official how much additional time was due, it varied from four to possibly ten minutes, perhaps the gale force breeze prevented clear communication but it was far from satisfactory and there was of course that final sting in the tail.

Like punch drunk boxers both sides traded attacks, With four additional minutes on the clock, a long range effort dropped into the goalmouth but with plenty of time to pick the ball up Omagh keeper Smyth opted to clear her lines, the kick fell to Porter, who without hesitation just dropped it over the keepers head to the Omagh net, delight for Cappagh, heartbreak for Omagh, a three point deficit that there was no time to close.

A classic it had proved to be, the perfect build up to the senior clash that followed. Both teams had inspiring players, perhaps none more so that Omaghs Christiane Hunter who was once again outstanding on the half back line. Kerry O Neill, Emma Nugent and Clodagh Mullan had given Cappaghs attack a torrid time while Michaela O Neill and Jenny McCrossan had been constant threats.

Tracey Wallace had a superb game for Cappagh, Terri McCusker worked hard to get on the end of every attack while in defence the workrate of Aideen O Neill and Anna Nugent were worthy of mention as McAnulla tried hard Both goalkeepers had their moments to, possibly for all the wrong reasons while the referee will go away from this game knowing he could have done better.

In the end though Poytnz , very much under the cosh throughout lifted the Brenda Logue memorial cup. The next step for the Tyrone champions, the Ulster campaign in the Autumn.

MATCH STATS

Cappagh Paula Quinn, Una McCullagh, Naomi McAnulla, Emma Wallace, Aideen O’Neill, Lenice McAleer, Anna Nugent, Tracey Wallace 1-2, Grainne McGread, Kathryn Sweeney 1-0, Clodagh Poyntz0-3 (2frees) Teri McCusker 1-1. Michelee Sweeney, Stephanie Patterson, Stephenie McGinn.

SUBS USED Crea McAleer FOR Emma Wallace, Aishling Porter FOR Steph McGinn, Megan Martin FOR Michelle Sweeney.

OMAGH ST ENDAS Laura Smyth, Emma Nugent, Kerry O’Neill, Clodagh Mullan, Orla Kelly, Christiane Hunter 0-2, Melissa Moynagh, Nicola McCrossan, Grainne McGale, Sinead O Neill 1-1, Colleen McCullagh 0-1, Terri McCullagh, Jennifer McCrossan 2-0 Nicola Haughey, Michaela O Neill 0-2 (1 free)

SUBS USED Christina McCrossan FOR Nicola Haughey, Hannah McCullagh FOR Mellisa Moynagh, Hayley Ballard FOR Sinead O Neill, Kelly O Sullivan FOR Colleen McCullagh , Colleen McCullagh FOR Terri McCullagh.

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