Connacht LGFA Senior Club Championship Final
Kilbride closed the gap on Connacht champions Kilkerrin-Clonberne, but were still well beaten by the Galway side, who made it back-to-back provincial titles in Enfield last Sunday.
Ollie Lennon’s side had suffered a 40-point defeat when these sides contested last year’s provincial semi-final and they decided to adopt a defensive approach last Sunday. However, Kilkerrin-Clonberne hit the opening five points of the game with Annette Clarke, Claire Dunleavy; Olivia Divilly, Nicola Ward and Chloe Miskell grabbing scores.
The Roscommon county champions responded with a Siobhan Tully point after Eilish Fannon saw her goal effort saved by Kilkerrin-Clonberne goalkeeper Lisa Murphy. However, the Galway side responded immediately as Louise Ward burst through the Kilbride defence before finishing to the net.
The sides then exchanged scores before Ailish Morrissey pointed for Kilkerrin-Clonberne and then Nicola Ward latched onto an Olivia Divilly pass to score their second goal. The seven-in-a-row Galway champions struck the final three points of the half through Olivia Divilly, Lynsey Noone and Ailish Morrissey as they led by 2-11 to 0-2 at half-time.
Kilbride brought on Aisling Hanley at the interval and she struck the opening score of the half but Kilkerrin-Clonberne responded with Louise Ward, Ailish Morrissey and Annette Clarke all finding the target. Ailish Fannon hit back for Kilbride as they continued to battle despite the deficit.
Olivia Divilly punished any indiscipline in the Kilbride defence and she moved Kilkerrin-Clonberne 2-15 to 0-4 ahead after 39 minutes. The All-Star nominee then set up Chloe Miskell for another score.
Kilbride earned themselves a penalty in the 44th minute but Aisling Hanley’s effort was saved by Lisa Murphy. However, as Tara Taylor sought to gather the rebound, she was dragged down in the square and Hanley got a second chance. The 15-year-old made no mistake second time around as she finished to the roof of the net.
Kilkerrin-Clonberne hit back with six of the next seven scores including a Nicola Ward goal to seal a 21-point victory and an All-Ireland semi-final against Leinster champions Foxrock-Cabinteely from Dublin.
Kilkerrin-Clonberne: L Murphy; S Gormally; A Costello; S Fahy; C Dunleavy (0-1); N Ward (2-1); H Noone; S Divilly (0-1); L Ward (1-1); L Noone (0-1); O Divilly (0-6, 6 frees); C Miskell (0-2); E Noone; A Clarke (0-2); A Morrissey (0-5).
Subs: K Mee for S Fahy (35 mins); C Boyle (0-1) for E Noone (35 mins); C Costello for S Gormally (40 mins); S Fahy for L Noone (40 mins); C Boyle for H Noone (50 mins).
Kilbride: A Gavigan; C Taylor; Y Creighton; M Lohan; A Feeley; R Mullaney; J Fannon; A Kelly; N Shanagher; E Fannon (0-1); C Gormley; B O’Beirne; S Clabby; T Taylor (0-1, 1 free); S Tully (0-1). Subs: A Hanley (1-3, 1-0 pen) for S Clabby (half-time); F Tully for M Lohan (half-time); L Connor for A Gavigan (half-time); M Tully for C Gormley (50 mins); A Tully for A Feeley (53 mins).