Pat’s on the prowl
Hollingworth’s side stun Tinahely to claim league title
THINGS just got very exciting in ladies club football in Wicklow ahead of the start of this year’s Senior championship after St. Pats stunned Tinahely in a very exciting Senior football league final in Annacurra on Saturday night last, June 29.
It’s only the league many will say but the victory suggests that Tinahely’s dominance may be under serious threat this season.
The sides were level at 1-11 each at full-time and then played a period of extra-time, ten minutes each half to decide the winners. The Wicklow town ladies eventually overcame their more experienced opponents and won out in the end by two points.
The result would probably be unexpected but the longer the game went on the more confident St. Pats became and once the game went to extra-time their fitness level seemed superior to a tiring Tinahely side. The final score after extra-time was St. Pats 3-14, Tinahely 2-15.
Very few would have predicted the final result during the first quarter. Even though St. Pats opened the scoring through a Sarah Delahunt point in the first minute, it was Tinahely who dominated during that first quarter, with Ciara Byrne and Laura Hogan scoring two points apiece.
The red jersey brigade was running hard at their opponents who were struggling at this stage to stay in the game. However, when Sarah Delahunt pointed again after 16 minutes, it seemed to give her side a great lift.
They now were doing some running of their own with the half backs getting forward in support. Midfielder Jess Lyons and Sarah Delahunt and the forwards began to develop a passing, running game and were difficult to stop.
Niamh Caffrey, Emma McNulty and Jess Lyons, following a long run up the field, all scored points to bring the Pat’s total to five points by the half time break. In the ten-minute period coming up to the break, Ciara Byrne and Laura Hogan pointed to leave Tinahely 0-6 to 0-5 ahead at the break
Tinahely attacked straight from the off and Ciara Byrne increased their lead with a point. They continued to press, and substitute Leah Geraghty added another point.
Then, almost from the kick out, St. Pats struck back. Centre back Kate Hennessy started a move in midfield and followed on through to get on the end and shoot home a great goal.
It was level play now and when team captain Sarah Delahunt scored a point straight from the kick out St. Pats had gone ahead for the first time in the game.
Tinahely rallied again and when Jackie Kinch got her hand to the ball and flicked it over the advancing goalie’s head to score a goal, Tinahely were back ahead by 1-8 to 1-6 after ten minutes.
Play moved up and down the field without a score for the next seven or eight minutes as both sides sought supremacy. Sarah Delahunt pointed a free after 18 minutes to reduce the gap to the minimum.
However, Aoife Gorman restored the two-point advantage three minutes later and when Laura Hogan stretched the lead to three points it looked like Tinahely had weathered the storm.
St. Pats had read a different script and came back strongly in the final six or seven minutes of normal time plus the five of added time.
The O’Reilly sisters Naoise and Saoirse were having a big influence on the game now. Although small in stature they were both very skillful when carrying the ball at pace and wasted no possession.
Emer McNulty pointed and was followed by another point from Jess Lyons. When Sarah Delahunt pointed a free just as the game entered added time, it looked like we were headed for two periods of extra-time to decide the winners.
Once again Laura Hogan lifted Tinahely’s spirits with a point. Pats came strongly but appeared to have lost their chance when they had two bad wides.
However, Sarah Delahunt saved the day for them when she pointed a free just before the call of time. The game finished at 1-11 each.
In the periods of extra-time the Wicklow town ladies appeared to last the pace the stronger.
As happened so often in the game, Laura Hogan pointed Tinahely into the lead with a pointed free.
Four minutes into this period, Naoise O’Reilly scored a great goal for Pats, following a series of quick hand passing in front of goal.
Ciara Byrne pulled a point back and then Aoife Gorman followed with a goal from a powerful shot. Just before the break, a Tinahely kick out went astray and Pats worked the ball in for Naoise O’Reilly to bag another goal. Pats were ahead by two points at the break, 2-1 to 1-2.
Jess Lyons put her side a goal up in the early stages of the second half. True to form, Tinahely came back with Ciara Byrne and Aoife Gorman reducing the lead back to the minimum.
But Sarah Delahunt had the final say when she fittingly scored a great captain’s point to ensure a deserved victory in a great game of football. The final score was 3-14 to 2-15.
Following the game, The Dominic Lee trophy was presented to the winning St. Pats captain Sarah Delahunt.
Scorers - St. Patrick’s: Sarah Delahunt 0-7, Naoise O’Reilly 2-0, Jess Lyons 0-3, Kate Hennessy 1-0, Emer Hennessy 0-2, Niamh Caffrey 0-1, Orla Redmond 0-1.
Tinahely: Laura Hogan 0-7, Ciara Byrne 0-5, Aoife Gorman 1-2, Jackie Kinch 1-0, Liah Geraghty 0-1.
ST. PATRICK’S: Jen Lyons; Sorcha Doyle, Saoirse O’Reilly, Sarah Evans; Luci Hobbs, Kate Hennessy, Lucy Dunne; Jess Lyons, Sarah Delahunt; Naoise O’Reilly, Niamh Caffrey, Orla Redmond; Emer McNulty, Saoirse, O’Reilly, Rebecca Hollingsworth. Subs: Amy Walsh, Megan Dunne and Leanne O’Neill.
TINAHELY: Kelly Byrne; Ciara Stokes, Sarah Hogan, Emily Hatton; Emily Mulhall, Aine Byrne, Aimee Maher; Jackie Kinch, Aoife Gorman; Sarah Byrne, Laura Hogan, Shannagh Goetelen; Siofra Byrne, Loretta Gilbert, Ciara Byrne. Subs: Liah Geraghty, Anna Lawlor and Aisling Winterbotham.
REFEREE: Cathy Forde.
The St Patrick’s ladies football team and mentors after their victory over Tinahely in the Senior league final in Annacurra.
John Bermingham presents the cup to St Patrick’s captain Sarah Delahunt.