O’Donovan Rossa 1-9
HAVING lost the county junior B final to Abhainn Dalla, Dohenys bounced back to overcome O’Donovan Rossa in the West Cork JBFC final at Enniskeane.
A strong first half saw the Dunmanway side lead by 2-6 to no score at half-time and, while their Skibb opponents responded in the second period, Dohenys held out to win by seven points. Midfielder Ruth Collins pick up the player of the match award and she paid tribute to the fortitude of her team-mates.
‘It was tough to get motivated after the county final,’ she said.
‘As the year goes on, the weather gets worse and we have a lot of girls away in college so you’re looking to get back on the field again quickly. We had some momentum even though we’d lost the county final and we were hoping to get the good start. ‘We knew we’d need that against Skibb and they’re very fast and fit. Even then, we were aware that the second half wouldn’t go the same way and that’s exactly what happened, but we held tough.’
With the wind to their advantage, Tony White’s side had a great stat with an early goal as Michaelle Love found the net. She added two points while Noelle O’Mahony did some great running and she and her sister Caroline worked well together with some great passes exchanging between them. Catriona Farrell was steady in her corner-back position and any time the Skibb girls looked to attack, captain Claire Hurley cleared the lines and put a stop to their advances.
With that 12-point half-time lead, Dohenys were in a commanding position but, with the elements, Skibb were always likely to bounce back. They got on the scoreboard within two minutes and midfielders Laura O’Mahony and Kate O’Donovan provided the platform for them to eat into the lead, with five more points added.
The Doheny girls, to their credit, didn’t lie back and kept the points coming with Moloney, Claire O’Brien and Mag White delivering. Some inspiring runs from Melissa Duggan, good passing from Lisa McSweeney and with Mag White looking threatening inside at full-forward, the Doheny girls held their nerve.
Fifteen minutes into the half, the O’Donovan Rossa girls secured a goal that left Kelly O’Sullivan with no chance. Another Skibb point followed which brought the game to where only a goal stood between the two sides and only seven minutes left to play. Some nail-biting moments ensued where Dohenys gave away possession too easily, but it wasn’t until the 25th minute, following some great passing by Melissa Duggan and Noelle O’Mahony, that led Michelle Love to blast one to the back of the Skibb net, securing victory for Dohenys. A final point by Michelle Murphy cemented the win for Dohenys.
Anthony McDermott representing the West Cork Board presented the cup to the delighted Dohenys captain, Claire Hurley. For the team and Collins, the hope is that they can use this as a springboard.
‘We won it last year too, and in 2014, my first year back,’ she says.
‘This was a good year, we got to the league final as well as the county final, Naomh Abán beat us there. ‘We’ll be junior B again next year but there is huge potential in the team, a lot of the girls are 16, 17, 18, though we won’t talk about the players at the other end of the scale!
‘We have a good mix and that helps, so we’ll be looking forward to build on this in 2019.’
Dohenys: Kelly O’Sullivan; Catríona Farrell, Claire Hurley (capt), Aprille Duggan; Caroline O’Mahony, Melissa Duggan, Aileen Murphy; Noelle O’Mahony, Ruth Collins; Lisa McSweeney, Catriona Moloney, Fiona Crowley; Michelle Love, Mag White, Clare O’Brien.
Subs used: Martina Collins, Donna Hayes, Michelle Murphy, Nora McCarthy.