Vhi Leinster Senior Club Championship Semi-Final Replay

Vhi Leinster Senior Club Championship Semi-Final Replay

( Michael Forde Leinster PRO )

Clonee (Wexford) 3-11 Timahoe (Laois) 2.16 (AET).

A goal and eleven points from Martina Dunne ensured that Timahoe of Laois have booked their place in the Vhi Leinster senior Club championship final on Sunday next against Seneschalstown of Meath, the final will be played in Geraldine Park, Athy, with a 1pm. throw in.
After playing out a dramatic draw last weekend, both Timahoe and Clonee were fully fired up for this encounter, and unlike most replays the supporters were treated to another nail biter of a game that needed a full eighty minutes of exciting football before the sides could be separated, with the O’Moore side claiming victory with two points to spare from the boot of their number fourteen and top scorer Martina Dunne in the final minutes of the game.
A well taken free in the 27th minute from Angela Casey gave Timahoe a single point advantage at the break (0-5 to 1-3). Both sides stepped up a gear in the second period, Clonee’s Una Leacy got on the end of a clever cross goal pass from Liz Everett to raise the green flag and give Clonee a two point advantage ( 1-8 to 1-6), and it looked as thought the home side were gaining the advantage.
Timahoe were thrown a life line at the start of the fourth quarter of normal time when Rebecca McPhilbin was fouled by Clonee keeper Marian Brownrigg leaving referee Tony Lennon no option but to point to the spot, Brownrigg and McPhilbin went head to head for the second time, but Brownrigg was quick to drop to her left to collect McPhilbin spot kick, Brownrigg was back in action seconds later with a point blank save to deny Timahoe sub, Ann Marie Kelly a certain goal.
Clonee’s sharp shooter Una Leacy fired home her second goal of the game in the twentieth minute to put her side five points clear (2-9 to 1-6). Timahoe mentors recognised the threat from the Clonee number fourteen, and at times two defenders were assigned to shadow Leacy.
With the clock running down in favour of Clonee and the alarm bells ringing in the O’Moore camp, Timahoe needed scores, and in fairness to the Laois side they remained composed and they managed to lift their game, notching up a goal and three unanswered points to level the scores at 2-9 apiece. Clonee’s Una Leacy could have sealed victory for her side in the final seconds of normal time, but Timahoe’s Louise Lawlor’s attempted block was enough to put Leacy off, as spectators and players watched the ball go to the right of Berni Deegan post and wide.
After a short break, both sides lined out for the start of twenty minutes of extra time, Timahoe continued to apply pressure on the Clonee backs, Martina Dunne and Aisling Quigley tagging on a point apiece before Una Leacy managed to slip her markers to hit the back of Deegans net for the third time in the game, to give the Wexford club a one point advantage against the run of play.
Dunne and Gemma O’Connor wasted no time adding a point apiece to restore order, and give the visitors the slimmest of leads at the end of the first period of extra time.
Timahoe were quickest out of the blocks for the final ten minutes, Martina Dunne firing over a free to open a two point gap, Una Leacy attempted to weave her way through the Timahoe back line in search of her fourth goal, however the number fourteen had to settle for a cleverly taken point over her right shoulder to close the gap to one point 3-10 to 2-14.
As the final grains of sand were running out for the home side, the atmosphere in the ground was reaching fever pitch, with the game on a knife edge and with only a point separating these two great sides, Martina Dunne fired over her fifth free of the game to give her side breathing space, but not for long, her opposite number Una Leacy added her third point to close the gap once more, however with only seconds remaining, Clonee needed to raise a green flag, while Timahoe needed to keep possession and run down the clock, and it was Timahoe’s top scorer Martina Dunne that had the final say, tapping over her eleventh point of the game to give her side a two point winning margin when referee Tony Lennon called for the ball to bring the game to a close. Timahoe now prepare for their meeting with Seneschalstown of Meath in the senior final, in Geraldine Park in Athy on Sunday next, throw in at 1pm.
Timahoe; Berni Deegan, Patricia Lawlor, Louise Delaney, Grainne Dunne (Jnr), Allison Hooban, Grainne Dunne Capt. (Snr), Aisling Quigley (1-1), Maggie Murphy, Angela Casey (0-1f), Shona Barry, Rebecca McPhilbin (0-1), Sarah Quigley (1-1), Gemma O’Connor (0-1), Martina Dunne (1-11 (5f), Liz Cahill. Subs: Ann Marie Kelly for Maggie Murphy.
Clonee: Marian Brownrigg, Linda Burke, Deirdre Burke (Capt.) Mary O’Neill, Margarette Doyle, Cathy Kavanagh, Orla Murphy, Caroline Murphy (0-4), Ciara Scallan, Liz Everett (0-4), Georgina Moore , Ali Everett, Josie Dwyer, Una Lacey (3-3), Martina Murray. Subs: Mairead Sheenan for Ciara Scallan.
Referee: Tony Lennon (Dublin).

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