Wednesday 21 March 2018

Connacht Cup concludes in style as Sligo claim crown

Captain Marion Doolan lifted the plate on behalf of her side
Captain Marion Doolan lifted the plate on behalf of her side

Saturday saw the women's Connacht Cup action come to a close with two thrilling deciders.

First up, Galwegians/NUIG took on Castlebar in the plate final decider in Crowley Park at 1.30 and it was the Galway side that got off the mark first, Edel McMahon scoring a try.

Both teams defended well in the first half and it looked as if there was no way through for either team but McMahon struck again before half-time, leaving the score as 10-0 at the break.

Castlebar responded well in the second half, captain Caroline Staunton crossing for a try soon after the break, which was also unconverted. With only a score in it both teams had periods of possession but it was Galway's Elaine Johnson who crossed after a series of forward pick and drives.

Another missed conversion left the score at 15-5 before the last points of the day were scored by Emma Doyle of Castlebar, bringing Castlebar to within five points of the Galway side at the finish.

Captain Marion Doolan lifted the plate on behalf of her side.

Attention then switched to the Sportsground where Buccaneers were taking on Sligo in the Cup final. Both sides exchanged penalties in the opening 15 minutes. In testing wet and windy conditions, both kickers performed admirably. The teams were well matched with both putting in huge defensive efforts. It was Ruth Goodwin of Sligo that crossed for the only try of the game in the first half. The try was converted by Lauren McGee leaving the half-time score at 10-3 to Sligo.

After the break, Buccs attacked with gusto but they couldn't get past Sligo's defence and neither team crossed the line again. Jacqui Mulligan lifting the cup for Sligo who won on a final score of 10-3.

Irish Independent

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