Loughiel tops against improving Portglenone

Antrim Camogie League Division 1

Portglenone 2-7 Loughgiel 3-25

By John McIlwaine

Loughgiel ran up another big score when beating Portglenone in Tuesday evening’s Division 1 league game at O’Cathain Park but though the gap at the end was more than twenty points there was still a good competitive element about the game. Portglenone have showed improved form in recent weeks and with Katie McAleese leading the resistance it turned out to be a very enjoyable game.

Portglenone kept in touch for the first twenty minutes and had the first score of the game through corner forward Eimear McKee. Emma McMullan opened the Loughgiel account with a pointed free and after Anna Connolly (2) and Charley McCarry added points Connolly, who was one of the stars of game, got Loughgiel’s opening goal.

Portglenone’s Eimear McKee in action against Loughgiel’s Charlene Campbell.

Katie McAleese breathed new life into the game with a goal in eighteen minutes and when Eimear McKee added a point the gap was back to two, but Loughgiel responded with two quick goals, the first from Amy Boyle, who cut through middle and fired home, and Charley McCarry who finished a good flowing move with a goal from close range. Katie pulled a point back for the home side with a good strike from 50 meters but two points from top scorer Ann Connolly before the break sent her team in at half time with a 3-8 to 1-3 advantage.

An indication of the riches Loughgiel possess was highlighted at the start of the second half when they were able to bring on Caitrin Dobbin and Lucia McNaughton and these contributed as they stretched their lead in the opening minutes with Lucia hitting two, Caitrin one while Charley Carry and Emma McMullan also tacked on scores.

Katie McAleese got a bit of reward her efforts deserved on 39 minutes when a 45 she thought she had mishit bounced high off the thirsty O’Cathain Park turf on the edge of the square and bounced high into the Loughgiel net to give her team a much needed boost and though Loughgiel hit back with three on the trot through Charley McCarry, Emma McMullan and Caitrin Dobbin, Portglenone kept taking the fight to them and two more by McAleese and one from Eimear McKee kept spirits high, despite the fact the game was gone from them.                                                                                                      Another scoring flurry from Loughgiel’s brilliant forward line stretched the lead even further and it in truth it could have been more had it not been for a few excellent saves from Patricia McCarry in the home team goals, but the Portlenone girls kept their heads up and got some reward with a late point from substitute Siobhan Doherty.

Amy Boyle breaks through to score Loughgiel’s second goal.

PORTGLENONE: Patricia McCarry, Una Doherty, Christin O’Kane, Nuala Kelly, Eimear Doherty, Maria McLarnon, Roisin Kelly, Caitriona McNicholl, Aine Mulholland, Jane McAleese, Katie McAleese, Naimh Doherty, Shannon Darragh, Louise Crozier, Eimear McKee.

Subs – Clodagh Convery, Aoibhinn McCloskey, Alisha Convery, Siobhan Doherty.

LOUGHGIEL: Megan Coyle, Charlene Campbell, Kaite Lynn, Finvola McVeigh, Emma McFadden, Maeve Connolly, Shauna Devlin, Clare McKillop, Christine Laverty, Amy Boyle, Emma McMullan, Ciara Dobbin, Charley McCarry, Chloe Higgins, Anna Connolly.

Subs – Louise McKillop, Lucia McNaughton, Caitrin Dobbin, Roisin McCormick

Referee – Paul O’Neill (Creggan)

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