St. Teresa’s 4-13 Oisin Glenariffe 1-6
Superior firepower proved to be the difference in this Kennedy Centre Football Shield final between St. Teresa’s and Glenariffe played under the lights at Cliftonville on Sunday night. The girls from North Antrim battled hard throughout and enjoyed as much possession as their opponents but St. Teresa’s were much more accurate in front of the posts and goals win games.
Interestingly both sides fielded with a Niamh O’Neill wearing number 11 and both the Niamh’s played a significant part in their sides overall performance with the Glen Road Niamh prominent in everything positive her side did and the North Antrim Niamh posing her side’s main scoring threat.
The girls from the Glens battled hard throughout with Laura McMullan driving forward time after time but too often Glenariffe were unable to turn good approach play into scores. At the other end goals from Jennifer Adams and Leanne May in response to one from Niamh O’Neill saw the Glen Road girls lead by 2-6 to 1-4 at the break but it still looked all to play for at this stage.
On the restart St. Teresa’s moved further ahead as Niamh O’Neill fired to the net in the opening minute and Lara McGoldrick and Leanne May followed with points as the City girls started to turn the screw. As they continued to press Niamh O’Neill rattled the crossbar before Kira McDonnell fired over to put them 3-8 to 1-5 ahead.
Glenariffe never gave up and were still matching their opponents for effort and possession but poor shooting and some good defensive play from Courtney Rice, Orlagh McMenamin and Alex Campbell kept them at bay.
Leanne May replied with a St. Teresa’s point before Glenariffe were finally rewarded for their efforts as Chloe Mitchell fired over their second point of the half. Lara McGoldrick and Niamh O’Neill exchanged further scores before the St. Teresa’s Niamh O’Neill added another.
As both sides emptied their benches it was the Belfast girls who finished as they had started the second half and Niamh O’Neill put the icing on a good personal performance with 1-1 and Lara McGoldrick 0-1 concluded the scoring .
The Glen Road girls were deserving winners. They were strong at the back and in the middle of the field and in a very potent attack Niamh O’Neill, Leanne May, Kira McDonnell and Lara McGoldrick were excellent.
Glenariffe, in only their second year deserve massive credit for reaching the Shield final and their scoring total certainly didn’t reflect the amount of possession they had over the hour. Noleen Cosgrove, Kerrie McAloon, Seana Cosgrove, Laura McMullan, Chloe Mitchell, Niamh O’Neill and Clare Emerson were their best on the night.