Success for Skibb footballers in divisional final
BY GER McCARTHY
O’DONOVAN Rossa put the seal on a memorable 2019 West Cork LGFA minor A championship campaign following victory over Kinsale in this year’s decider.
The Skibbereen club were drawn alongside Kinsale, Bandon, Valley Rovers, Clonakilty and St Colum’s in this year’s divisional minor A grade. Embarking on a round-robin competition, Rossas defeated St Colum’s in their opening game before going down 5-9 to 2-2 away to Kinsale in their second championship outing.
Using that defeat as a catalyst, O’Donovan Rossa registered consecutive three wins over Bandon (3-13 to 2-4), Valley Rovers (3-8 to 3-5) and Clonakilty (3-12 to 1-7) to finish joint-top of the championship table on eight points alongside Kinsale.
That outcome secured a West Cork minor A final appearance against the only club to inflict defeat upon Rossas since the beginning of the championship, Kinsale. St James’ GAA grounds in Ardfield was the venue for last weekend’s decider between favourites Kinsale and an in-form Skibb.
Goals from Triona Murphy, Nora Crowley and Mallaidh O’Neill proved pivotal to an engaging encounter’s outcome as O’Donovan Rossa ran out 3-7 to 0-8 winners. Despite the defeat, Kinsale produced a battling display with Sophie Webb, Ava McCarthy, Jenny Murphy and Faye Aherne contributing the bulk of the losers’ scores.
There would be no denying O’Donovan Rossa however with Triona Murphy (1-3), Nora Crowley (1-2), Mallaidh O’Neill (1-1), Emily Byrne and Emer McCarthy (0-1 each) scores ensuring the West Cork minor A trophy returned to Skibbereen. The final’s Player of the Match award went to a deserving recipient in Rossa defender Jessica Beechinor.
The newly crowned West Cork champions owed much to the diligent off-field efforts of a management team comprising of Denis Murphy, Karina Conway, Derek Tobin, James O’Mahony, Mike Scannell and Mike McCarthy.
Victory over Kinsale also secured a Cork LGFA Minor A quarter-final appearance against Glanmire. Alas, one of the favourites for this year’s county proved too strong for the West Cork side, running out convincing winners. Ciarnad O’Donovan (1-2), Lia Hogan (1-0), Mallaidh O’Neill (0-1) and Triona Murphy (0-1) got on the score-sheet for O’Donovan Rossa but it wasn’t enough to prevent defeat.
Glanmire will next face the team O’Donovan Rossa conquered in their divisional final, Kinsale, in the last four of the county after the latter overcame Douglas to reach the penultimate round.
O’Donovan Rossa: Eabha Lucey; Kate O’Donovan, Emma Connolly, Áine Keating; Jennifer Keating, Eadaoin Fitzgerald, Jessica Beechinor; Triona Murphy (captain), Sarah Hurley; Mallaidh O’Neill, Emer McCarthy, Áine McCarthy; Saoirse Connolly, Emily Byrne, Nora Crowley.
Subs: Ciarnad O’Donovan, Grace Hallihane, Chloe Conway, Áine Geoghan, Laura O’Brien, Lia Hogan, Aoife Hurley, Katie Scannell, Mary Whooley, Michaela Maguire, Eimear Byrne, Sharon Beechinor, Natalie Dempsey, Amy McCarthy, Saoirse Lucey, Leah Fitzgerald, Anna Carroll.
Kinsale: Jeanne Murphy; Meadhbh Hurley, Aoife O’Leary, Katelyn Forde; Ali McGann, Darragh Tyner, Sarah Murphy; Jenny Murphy, Sophie Collins; Sophie Webb, Faye Ahern, Ava McCarthy; Rachel O’Brien, Daire Buckley, Geraldine Tyner.
Subs: Hannah Kate Finn, Rosemary Buckley, Aisling Hurley, Alice O’Callaghan, Kenzie Desmond, Ava Coyle, Grace Coyle, Nicole Buckley, Lily Fay, Caoimhe Heffernan, Kate Farrelly, Amy Sue Broderick, Clare Cronin, Ellie Condon.
Referee: Leonard Cooke.