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Aisling Annacotty 6-0 Herbertstown
Our U18 girls followed up their league title-winning heroics of last week, with a comfortable home win on Sunday morning, over Herbertstown in the Quarter Final of the cup. Nicole Lammond was first on the score sheet, pouncing on a goal-kick that fell short and firing the ball quite superbly to the far corner of the net from 25 yards. And it was “deja-vu all over again”, a few minutes later, when Lammond repeated the trick, this time firing over the keeper, from a little closer in. With our back four of Bronagh Kelly, Jade O’Connor, Charlie Hanrahan and Sarah Cleary not giving Herbertstown a sniff, our midfielders had license to express themselves, and Taylor McEvoy, Emma Costelloe, Sarah Hall and Susan O’Shea took full advantage to play some delightful one and two-touch football. On 30 minutes, Lammond turned provider with a fine lay-off to Aisling Kennedy, who made no mistake from 18 yards. On 35, it was Kennedy, with an almost identical lay-off to Hall, who hit a beauty from a full 30 yards over the backpedalling keeper. Joining the fray in the second half, Amy Costelloe, Laoise Ní Aodha and Aisling Doran continued the high standards set by their teammates. On one occasion, Herbertstown did broke through our rearguard, and looked set to score, but keeper Abby McCarthy was out smartly to make the save. Mid-way through the half, Sarah Cleary, showing as ever, that she can play anywhere, powered through the defence from midfield, only to be pulled down, just as she was about to pull the trigger. Dusting herself down, she stepped up to the spot to calmly pass the ball to the corner of the net. To top off the scoring, it was Lammond again, completing her hat-trick, cleverly lobbing the keeper from 15 yards with her weak foot. Next up Murroe in the semi-final.
Killmallock Utd 0-4 Aisling Annacotty
Our U16 girls made it Super Sunday for Aisling girls football, by outplaying Killmallock on their home patch, to ensure they finished above them in third place. Eight of the girls had played in the morning for the U18s, and also endured a tough 1.5-hour physical training session the day before with Limerick ETP, but there was no sign of fatigue, as they took the game to the opposition from the off. Within 5 minutes, Alicia O’Callaghan was on the score sheet, taking advantage of hesitancy in the penalty box, to power her way through and finish from close-in. Some of the football the girls played on the uneven surface, was quite superb, with Aisling Doran outstanding in the first-half, and combining excellently with Emma Costelloe on the left-hand side. The back four of Karen Byrnes, Sarah Cleary, Íde Ní Ifearnáin and Aoibhín Hayes was solid as a rock, and Sarah Hall’s “heat-map” would have covered the entire field, had Sky been in attendance. On 20 minutes, O’Callaghan took a corner on the right, which was fired back out to her by Emma Costelloe when the play broke down. She then cut inside past one defender, then another, and fired a left-footed shot from 20 yards that left the keeper no chance. There was no let-up in the second half, as Amy Costelloe and Nessa Kelly came on and continued to pile on the pressure up front. Laoise Ní Aodha showed her versatility by playing excellently in centre midfield, alongside an energetic and tough-tackling Emer Ryan. On 60 minutes, the game was put to bed by captain Susan O’Shea, who powered an outstanding right-footed shot to the net from 18 yards following a scintillating run down the right. Killmallock kept fighting hard though, and goalie Abby McCarthy did superbly to cut out a fast-moving cross from the right, milliseconds before an onrushing forward made contact. She also made an excellent reaction-save in a 1 v 1 with Killmallock’s best player, Clodagh Doherty. O’Shea got in again on 70 minutes, but her shot from 20 yards came off the inside of the post and dribbled its way along the goal line to safety. On 80 minutes, Sarah Cleary took an excellent free-kick from 50 yards out, dropping it over the heads of the defenders onto the penalty spot, where Ní Aodha controlled it with one touch and swept the ball to the net with her left foot, to finish second-top scorer in the league, and seal the deal.
Our Junior A Team were 1-0 away winners to Regional United in the quarter finals of the Lawson Cup. Jason Lipper scored the winner.
Our 14 A team were unlucky to lose to Listowel Celtic in the SFAI Regions Cup. The score was 4-4 after extra time. Listowel Celtic winning 5-4 on penalties.
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