Success for Armagh and Antrim Ladies
TWO All-Ireland trophies came north yesterday evening as the Armagh and Antrim ladies won their intermediate and junior finals at Croke Park.
Armagh collected the intermediate crown with a fine 1-12 to 1-5 victory over Waterford while Antrim were 3-9 to 1-7 winners over Louth in the junior decider.
The Orchard girls, under the guidance of James Daly, regained senior status, and it could have been a lot more comfortable as they kicked numerous wides and saw a number of goal chances miss the target.
Thirteen of those wides arrived in the opening half, but they were still able to take a 1-5 to 1-1 lead into the changing rooms, Shauna O’Hagan with the goal, pouncing after Caroline O’Hanlon’s point attempt had hit the upright at the Davin end.
Waterford did score the first point of the second half, but Armagh were always in control. Late on. However, the Munster side were awarded a penalty as they tried to get way back into the match.
But they found Catherine McAlinden, who missed the semi-final due to injury, too hard to beat, and the Clann Eireann keeper was able to divert the ball away from danger, just one of a string of fine saves.
It was comfortable from there on in and Daly’s side deservedly lifted the cup.
Earlier in the say, Antrim got off to a quick start that laid the foundations for their second junior success in four years.
Louth had beaten the Saffrons earlier in the year, but the tables were turned as they goaled three times, much to the delight of their travelling support.
Kirsty McGuinness, a Northern Ireland soccer star, grabbed two goals while Anna Finnegan also raised a green flag.
Like Armagh, Antrim had their goalkeeper to thank as Ciara McCoy pulled off a string of magnificent saves.
In the senior final Cork defeated Munster rival Kerry to claim their seventh title in eight seasons n a 0-16 to 0-7 scoreline.
Armagh: C McAlinden; C McCann, L Brown, S Marley; S Reel, N Marley, N Henderson (0-1); S McCleary, C O’Hanlon (0-3f); M McGuinness (0-1), M McAlinden (0-2f), F McKenna (0-2); C Lennon (0-1), S O’Hagan (1-1), K Mallon (0-1). Subs: S Mackle for McKenna (50), M Tennyson for Mallon (52), C O’Hare for Lennon (57), C Duffy for Henderson (57).
Waterford: A Jordan; A Landers, K McGrath, N Dunphy; R Tobin, G Enright, M Wall; M McGrath (0-1), E Power; L Wall (0-2), M Ryan (0-2, 1f), T Fitzgerald; A Wall, S Curran, H Landers (1-0). Subs: E Fennell for Fitzgerald (24), M Revins for Landers (46), G Kenneally for Fennell (56).
Referee: P Kehoe (Carlow).
Antrim – C McCoy; B Scullion, E Kelly, S Haughey; C McHugh, N Kelly, A Tubridy; C Mullan (0-1), G McGinley; C Carey, K McGuinness (2-0), C Timoney (0-4f); A McAtamney, A Finnegan (1-1), M Cooper (0-1). Subs: M McCurdy (0-2) for McAtamney (h.t.), N Cooper for Scullion (50), D McAteer for McHugh (56), R Fulton for Finnegan (57),
Louth – U Pearson; A.M. Lynch, A Carney, A McGee; M McMahon, M O’Connell (0-1), P Marmion; G Lynch (0-1), S Lynch (0-1); L Kelly, A.M. Murphy (0-1f), C O’Connor, C O’Connor; R Heeney, K Flood (0-1), J McGuinness (0-1). Subs: K Cunningham for McGuinness (15), J McGuinness for Cunningham (23), V McGinn for Marmion (h.t.), S Byrne (0-1) for Flood (40), E Conlon for McGuinness (54).
Referee: S Regan (Roscommon).