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NFL 2016 Div 2 Rd 4 Clare V Cavan

Clare 3-06 and Cavan 0-9

7th February 2016


Clare Ladies Footballers were looking forward to their round four meeting with Cavan in the National football league’s division two ahead of the fixture which took place in Corofin last Saturday in lovely Spring conditions. The confidence came from the momentum Clare had built up in their opening three games where they held the high ground throughout, overcoming character forming fight-backs to win comprehensively in all three. It remained to be seen how they would stand up to title favourites Cavan.

The contest opened at a blistering pace that was maintained throughout and Cavan were first to take the offensive but were wide of the mark, as much a sign of fierce defence from both sides as it was tension between potential NFL semi-finalists. After Niamh Keane laid-off  to Grainne Nolan for her first score of the day on eight minutes, Cavan were back with three straight points in a two minute spell from Aisling Doonan (2) and Aisling Sheridan, gifted to them via careless Clare kicking and passing. When Roisin Considine intercepted on the half back line the ball was carried with real intent and after passing through Sarah Bohannon and Louise Henchy, Grainne Nolan planted it low past Cavan’s Clodagh Doonan to push the Saffron & Blue into the lead on twenty minutes 1-1 to 0-3. Further pressure from the Lakeland County yielded an Aisling Traynor point and after missing one free, they converted another to send them back into the lead by a point with two minutes to go to the break. In those two minutes, some rapid ball was played into Clare’s Sarah Bohannon, from Orla Considine and Becky Mahon, who displayed great physical determination to deliver to Niamh O’Dea to point and draw at 1-02 to 0-5 for Cavan. Bohannon quickly delivered again to O’Dea who goaled powerfully and the score was 2-02 to 0-5 when Gerry Carmody from Roscommon called for the ball.   

On the resumption, Ailish Considine collected from Louise Henchy and goaled for the best of starts to the second half and a stifling seven minutes for the Lakeland saw Clare swamp them as Niamh O’Dea and Louise Henchy poached points each. Goalkeeper Clodagh Doonan did well to save Orla Devitt’s goal opportunity but when Niamh O’Dea was fouled, Nolan pointed the resultant free-kick. The score going into the last quarter was Clare ahead by nine points, 3-05 to 0-5. The Cavan fight back came and the Blue pressure yielded a free which Aisling Doonan pointed. A potential game changer came with twelve minutes to go when Clare Hester was given ten minutes by referee Carmody for persistent fouling and Cavan took advantage of the imbalance as Traynor scored from play and No. 3 Rachael Jordan who was deployed to forward duties for the ten minute spell also took a nice point. A paradoxical but inspirational moment showed the character of the Clare side when half-forward Roisin Howley made an important block deep in the Clare defence and half-back Roisin Considine ended up taking the thirty yard point for the Saffron & Blue.The hard fought contest ran into injury time and Doonan scored the last point of the game on thirty four minutes. The game ended with Clare 3-06 and Cavan 0-9.

 

A lightning-fast paced and physical game by any standards, showed that Clare not only have the skills (despite a bumpy ball handling spell in the first half) but also have the physical and mental stamina for a hard fought scrap. Their objective has probably changed now as they have already surpassed their own expectation, and it looks like they are aiming high currently occupying the top position on the division 2 table.  Next weekend Clare takes the long journey north to meet Donegal in Round 5.

Clare: 1. Ciara Harvey (West Clare Gaels), 2. Eva O’Dea (Banner Ladies), 3. Laurie Ryan (Capt), 4. Shauna Harvey, 5. Roisin Considine (0-1) (Liscannor), 6. Clare Hester (Fergus Rovers), 7. Ellie O’Gorman (Kilmihil), 8. Louise Henchy (0-1) (Banner Ladies), 9. Becky Mahon (Kilmihil), 10. Orla Devitt (Eire Og), 11. Ailish Considine (VCapt) (1-0) (Kilmihil), 12. Niamh Keane (Banner Ladies), 13. Grainne Nolan (1-02, 2f) (Banner Ladies), 14. Niamh O’Dea (1-02) (Banner Ladies), 15. Sarah Bohannon (Shannon Gaels). 

Subs: 18. Grainne Harvey (West Clare Gaels), 20. Aoife Keane (Banner Ladies), 22. Roisin Looney (Cooraclare), 23. Roisin Howley (Burren Gaels), 16. Emma O’Driscoll (Banner Ladies), 17. Amy O’Brien (Burren Gaels), , 19. Orlaith Lynch (Banner Ladies), 21. Ciara Hickey (Kilmurry Ibrickane), , 24. Kayleigh McCormack (Inj.) (Burren Gaels).

Neil Moynihan (Manager), Paul Mannion (Selector), Ruari Smyth (Strength & Conditioning), Emma Finnegan (Nutritionalist), Bernie Regan (Physio).



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