Antrim Intermediate semi-final:
Rossa 4-7 Brídíní Óga Glenravel 2-4
ROSSA used all their experience to take early control of this Antrim Intermediate semi-final in Randalstown on Saturday evening and from then on they were able to hold off a determined effort from Brídíní Óga Glenravel.
The Belfast girls got off to a good start with a quick point from Mairiosa McGourty followed by another from a free from Natalie McGuinness and Sarah Armstrong pounced to sweep home a goal, all inside the opening four minutes of play.
They added another McGuinness pointed free before the Glenravel girls mounted their first serious attack, but goalie Michaela Press got in the way of Torie Edgar’s effort to save the day. A few minutes later however Molly Woulahan lobbed in a goal for Brídíní Óga only for McGuinness’ mishit free to travel all the way to the Glenravel net at the other end.
Despite that Glenravel had overcome their sluggish start and were much more threatening until the break, forcing a penalty that was saved by Orlaith McCaul and having another shot blocked on the line.
Rossa led by 2-4 to 1-2 at the change of ends, but were under pressure on the re-start. However on a break, Armstrong forced in her second goal and, while Bridíní Óga responded with a goal from Edgar and a fine point from an acute angle from Maria McKenna, Rossa remained in control.
The experienced Rossa half-back line of Bronagh Orchin, Muireann Quinn and Orlaith McCaul with Caoimhe McNeice dropping back for extra cover soaked up all the pressure with Eimear Byrne, Natalie McGuinness and Mairiosa McGourty looking for passes and then driving forward.
Two McGuinness frees stretched the gap on the score-board while Glenravel just couldn’t get the breaks at the other end and Byrne with a point and McGuinness with a late goal sealed a place in the final.
The Glenravel girls worked hard, especially in defence where Kirsty Laverty, Laoise McKenna and Maeve Mulholland stood out. Further out Molly Woulahan and Torie Edgar were always a handful for the Rossa defence. However the six All-Ireland club medallists from a decade ago gave the city side a solid platform to succeed.
Rossa : M Press, N Semple, C Quinn, C McMenamin, B Orchin, M Quinn, O McCaul, c McNeice, R Matthews, G Shannon, N McGuinness 2-5, 1-5 frees, E Byrne 0-1, S Armstrong 2-0, C Shannon, M McGourty 0-1.
Sub : N Killen for C Shannon.
Brídíní Óga : O Donnelly, L Kerr, E Hynds, M Mulholland, K Laverty, L McKenna, Ú McAleenan, B Laverty, E McAleenan 0-1 free, S Morrow, M McKenna 0-2, 0-1 free, M Woulahan 1-0, A Traynor, T Edgar 1-1, E Gould.