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Wednesday 23 October 2019

St Michael's are out of Connacht

Connacht Ladies Junior Club Quarter-final: St Michaels 2-11 Claregalway 4-9

Emma Gallagher at Coola

Intermediate winners St Michael's put up a spirited display against opponents Claregalway in their Connacht quarter final encounter in Coola on Saturday evening but despite their best efforts, Jack Haran's side were defeated on a margin of four points.

It looked like the difference could have been much greater in the opening half as the Tribeswomen pounced with 3 quick goals with only 5 minutes gone, but St Michael's didn't despair and the excellent Lauren Boles was the driver behind their resurgence.

Boles would get 2-9 of her side's tally, with the only other 2 scores from Eilise Codd, including a point on 23 seconds, the game's opening score.

Referee Tony Conroy awarded three penalties throughout the hour, the first after Claregalway's Mary Dunphy was fouled, Kate Slevin duly converting as four minutes later midfielder Shauna Brennan also hit the back of the St Michael's net.

The onslaught continued with Slevin getting her second goal after a Maeve Moran pass.

The Galway side were ahead by 3-1 to 0-1 on 5 minutes but St Michael's didn't fluster.

The influential Boles was given a penalty on 8 minutes after being pulled to the ground, her attempt was saved by keeper Hannah Coen as a '45 was awarded .

However, shortly after Boles made up for the penalty.

She was fed by the hardworking Gráinne O'Loughlin, the ball deflecting off the keeper into the net as St Michael's were behind by 6 points.

Boles converted a free after she was fouled and she split the posts on 18 minutes as the scoreline read 3-1 to 1-2.

Sara Feeney did good work and was fouled, Boles was free and Feeney's pass was then sent over by the half forward as they were clawing away at the Claregalway lead.

Codd won the kick-out and linked up with Mairead Carty who found Boles who made it a 3 point game as the Galway side went 17 minutes without a score before Slevin pointed from play on 22 minutes.

Caroline Benson was covering a lot of ground for St Michael's and involved in a lot of their attacks.

A Claregalway goal chance was defended well by St Michael's captain Deirdre Haran as half-time approached while moments later another chance was fisted away by Shauna Kelly in the St Michael's goals.

Boles added two frees as Claregalway led by 3-3 to 1-6 at the break as it was all to play for in second half.

Half time substitute Hannah Walsh added the first score of the second half from play before Boles again did excellently, shrugging off 2 opponents and pointing from play as 3 points separated them once more.

Alannah Griffen and the influential Walsh added two more as their lead stretched to five on 40 minutes, Griffen sending over a free as they went six in front.

Then St Michael's were awarded their second penalty on 43 minutes, who else only Boles involved and she blasted to the net as the scoreline read 3-7 to 2-7 with 15 minutes to go.

Griffen and Boles traded frees with a Laura Scanlon goal chance going wide for Claregalway.

There was still only a goal between them with 10 to go as St Michael's were trying to find the net.

Claregalway's Walsh got her side's fourth goal on 52 minutes as it seemed to give them the cushion, a fantastic point from Brennan on 55 minutes was to be their last score as St Michael's tried hard to find the net as they were behind by 7.

Boles added a free with 3 minutes remaining and then Coen had to make an impressive save on Boles's goal chance on 60 minutes.

Kiara Kearney was sin binned late on for Claregalway as Codd saw her goal chance saved by Megan Flaherty as it was all St Michael's but time eventually ran out, two Boles scores in injury time seeing them lose by 4 after a hearty display.

ST MICHAEL'S: S Kelly, D O'Loughlin, D Haran (C), S Gorman, M McDermott, G O'Loughlin, L Haran, K Haran, K McDermott, A Kelly, L Boles, C Benson, S Feeney, E Codd, M Carty.

Subs used: N Gilmartin for D O'Loughlin (23), L Cullen for A Kelly (35), S Kelly for Feeney (45), E Hynes.

Scorers L Boles (2-9, pen 4f), E Codd (0-2, 1f).

CLAREGALWAY: H Coen, A Lyons, L Flynn, M Flaherty, A Walsh, K Kearney, S O'Connell, C Moran, S Brennan, L Scanlon, M Dunphy, M Moran, A Griffen, A Murphy, K Slevin.

Subs used: H Walsh, A O'Flynn for M Moran (54), A Philips for Dunphy (57), E Murphy for Griffen (63).

Scorers: K Slevin (2-2, pen), H Walsh (1-2), S Brennan (1-1), A Griffen (0-4, 3f).

Referee: T Conroy.

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