Bohan's Jackies up and running
LGFA - New Ireland Assurance Dub Stars: Dublin 4-13 Dub Stars 1-9
Mick Bohan's double-winning Dublin side began the new year with a win at the DCU grounds as they retained the New Ireland Assurance Senior Dub Stars Challenge Trophy.
Although without the services of Player of the Year Sinead Aherne (St Sylvester's) the Metropolitans were still too strong for their Dub stars counterparts.
Hannah O'Neill took up the gauntlet with two second-half goals, while Dublin's new-look inside line of Siobhan Woods and Ciara McGuigan would both raise the green flag in the first half to leave Dublin up by four points.
That Dublin's margin wasn't more was down to Clontarf duo Caoimhe O'Connor and Siobhan Killeen who certainly impressed on the day.
On a cold afternoon up in DCU, there was no shortage of big names between the two sides, with 15 players from Dublin's All-Ireland-winning final squad involved.
The Dub Stars, although without multi All Star winner Sinead Goldrick, could still call on the notable talents of Olwen Carey, Niamh Collins, Lauren Magee and Niamh McEvoy. However, they were chasing the game seconds after the throw in when the Naul's Carla Rowe got on the end of a well-worked move to send over the first point of the game.
McGuigan would stretch Dublin's lead before McEvoy opened the club selection's account off a free. However, Dublin then found the back of the net when Woods palmed into the back of the net after her initial shot had been cleared off the line.
The Dub Stars made a good response with two points on the bounce, but the considerable presence of Rowe on the forty meant that the Dub Stars had a job on their jobs to stay in the match.
Rowe, after landing a free, would then set up McGuigan for Dublin's second goal on 21 minutes, but the Dub Stars were then handed a lifeline when O'Connor, having been dragged down inside the square, dusted herself down to convert the penalty despite Ciara Trants best efforts.
Dubli would reply with points from Sylvester's star Kate Sullivan and McGuigan, but an O'Connor point in stoppage time meant there was just four points between the sides at the break, 2-5 to 1-4.
With the wind at their backs, points from Rowe, Nicole Owens and two from Woods (Laura Quinn pointed at the other end) left Dublin in a strong position heading into the final quarter. However, a brace from Killeen - who bagged 5-4 for Clontarf in the All-Ireland Club Intermediate Final - reminded Dublin that they could affort to relax.
With O'Neill rebounding into the empty net, Dublin left their opponents with too much to do and she then doubled her goal tally with a terrific effort.
The Dub Stars never gave up the ghost, with Emma Sherwood sending over a nice point. However Dublin finished the game as they started, with points from Emily Flanagan and McGuigan.
Dublin: Ciara Trant (St Brigid's); Kate Fitzgibbon (Clontarf), Martha Byrne (Cuala), Rachel Ruddy (Ballyboden St Enda's); Hannah Leahy (Scoil Ui Chonaill), Lucy Collins (Na Fianna), Ciara Ruddy (Ballyboden St Enda's); Siobhan McGrath (Thomas Davis), Niamh Hetherton (Clontarf); Kate Sullivan (St Sylvester's) 0-2, Carla Rowe (Clann Mhuire) 0-4(0-3f), Hannah O'Neill (Foxrock/Cabinteely) 2-0; Ciara McGuigan (Thomas Davis) 1-3), Nicole Owens (St Sylvester's) 0-1, Siobhan Woods (Raheny) 1-2. Subs: Rachel Fleming (Kilmacud), Danielle Lawless (St Sylvester's), Aoife Kane (Kilmacud), Eve Kehoe (Skerries Harps), Emma McDonagh (Foxrock/Cabinteely), Emily Flanagan (Ballyboden St Enda's) 0-1.
Dub Stars: Aisling Tarpey (Foxrock/Cabinteely); Orlaith Higgins (Castleknock), Tarah O'Sullivan (Foxrock/Cabinteely), Sarah Fagan (Clontarf); Hannah McLoughlin (Clontarf), Olwen Carey (Thomas Davis), Niamh Collins (Foxrock/Cabinteely); Lauren Magee (Kilmacud), Emma Sherwood (St Brigid's) 0-1; Laura Carolan (Castleknock), Niamh McEvoy (St Sylvester's) 0-3(0-2f), Eabha Rutledge (Kilmacud); Ciara Burgess (Castleknock), Caoimhe O'Connor (Clontarf) 1-2, Siobhan Killeen (Clontarf) 0-2. Subs: Emer Ni Eafa (Fingallians), Ciara Purdy (Na Fianna), Kate McKenna (Clanna Gael Fontenoy), Laura Quinn (Lucan Sarsfields) 0-1, Eimear Loughlin (Cuala), Jennifer Dunne (Cuala), Aoife Whelan (Castleknock), Oonagh Whyte (Clann Mhuire), Sinead Goldrick (Foxrock/Cabinteely), Lorna Fusciardi (Foxrock/Cabinteely), Sarah Quinn (Foxrock/Cabinteely).
Ref: John Doherty (Robert Emmet's)