by Aoife O’Sullivan
U-15 girls: Ballinrobe Community School vs Presentation College, Tuam.
The Ballinrobe Under 15 girls were impressive in their defeat of Tuam today, securing the top place in their group. It was well worth their time representing their school on their day off school, as they won their match by a landslide: the full-time score was 6-2, in favour of the home side.The game didn’t get off to an ideal start for the ‘Robe, with Tuam scoring only minutes into the first half, but the Ballinrobe side quickly shook off that defensive error. Within ten minutes the game was level again, after a wonderful header from Shauna Burke, assisted by Maura Hughes. A debatable handball call enabled Tuam to take a scoring position, and despite the best efforts of the home side’s defence, the ball landed in the back of the net. Two goals were scored in quick succession by Kate Brennan and Elannah Keane, putting Ballinrobe in the lead: a position they would comfortably hold for the rest of the match.Towards the end of the first half, Róise Burke was heavily tackled by the Tuam goalkeeper, and a penalty was rightfully awarded. Róise coolly converted from the penalty spot, cementing Ballinrobe’s lead. Kate Brennan then slotted in yet another goal, leaving the score line 5-2 at half time.The quieter second half began with many goal chances for both teams, but it wasn’t until fifteen minutes had elapsed that Ballinrobe managed to score again – this time a fabulous goal from Maura Hughes. There were also goal chances for Emily Jennings and Faith Durkin, but they were unfortunately shut down by Tuam’s clever defence. With only minutes remaining, Tuam were on the warpath, forcing two difficult saves in quick succession from Amy Forde, the Ballinrobe goalkeeper.Ballinrobe were comfortable in possession throughout the game, and really looked like a team that were enjoying their football, regardless of the mucky conditions. The exciting game finished in a Ballinrobe victory, which has earned this talented team a rightful place in the Connaught semi-final next month.
Pictured (L-R) back row: Niamh McDonald-Connolly, Ella Reilly, Amy Warde, Shauna Burke, Amy Forde, Sophia McHale, Cadhla Cunningham, Jessica McManus
(L-R) front row: Emily Jennings, Elanna Keane, Ali Hughes, Aisling Walsh, Maura Hughes, Kate Brennan, Roise Burke, Faith Durkin