Aldergrove withstand late rally to gain an opening day win

LGFA Ladies Intermediate Football Championship

St. Gall’s 2-13 Aldergrove 3-12

Nineteen minutes into the second half St. James’ Aldergrove appeared to be coasting in this exciting LGFA Intermediate Championship meeting with St. Gall’s at Milltown but the Crumlin ladies wouldn’t score again as the home side staged a storming finish but in the end came up just short.

It was St. Gall’s who made the better start at Milltown as Alexandra Burns pointed a free in the first minute before Hannah Cosgrove fired home the game’s opening goal with only two minutes gone.

Aldergrove began to get their game together with Aoife Taggart 0-2 and Caitlin Taggart pointing to close the gap to one by the 8th minute and Alexandra Burns from a free and Katie Rose Bell with a great point from play exchanged further points to keep the gap at one.

Hannah Cosgrove edged the Milltown Row ladies two in front but a couple at the other end by the superb Aoife Taggart kept the Crumlin side very much in touch.

It was end to end stuff as two evenly matched sides went toe to toe and Aine Sheehan edged St. Gall’s three ahead once more with 25 minutes gone with Bronagh McGuinness firing over at the other end when she could have had a goal.

The visitors might have gone ahead when an Aoife Taggart rocket came back of an upright and was cleared to safety but the same player kicked the final score of the opening half to leave her side trailing by the minimum at the short whistle.

HT 1-6 TO 0-8

Once again it was St. Gall’s who made the early running as the second half got under way with Anna McBride coming to the Aldergrove rescue with a good save in the opening minute.

St. James’ failed to heed the early warnings however as Alexandra Burns pointed a free and then fired home her side’s second goal in the 4th minute following an excellent build up.

Corner forward Burns continued to carry the game to the visitors as she pointed another free in the 6th minute and at this stage St. Gall’s were looking good but suddenly the Crumlin side came to life.

Aoife Taggart led the charge with points in the 9th and 10th minutes and when Paula Masterson fired a penalty to the net in the 12th minute the Aldergrove recovery was well under way.

They continued to carry the game to the opposition as the superb Aoife Taggart added a second goal from play and as the one way traffic towards the St. Gall’s goal continued Nicole Jones and Bronagh McGuinness added points.

 The visitors were now flying and the Taggart twins combined with Caitlin placing Aoife for Aldergrove’s third goal with 11 minutes remaining and a landslide victory looked on the cards but amazingly it would be St. James’ final score.

St. Gall’s had been on the back foot for quite a while but they picked themselves up of the canvas to stage a sterling finish to put the visitors on the ropes as Claire Cosgrove, Alexandra Burns, Aine Sheehan and Burns again cut the deficit to a single point with three minutes remaining.

It was to be the game’s final score however as the Aldergrove defence closed ranks to hold out for the win.

St. James entertain Gort na Mona next Sunday 10th September while St. Gall’s travel to St. Joseph’s Glenavy who defeated the Enright Park ladies in their opening game on Sunday.

St. Gall’s: 1 Niamh O’Neill, 2 Holly Bone, 3 Erinn Tieger, 4 Michael Culbert, 5 Fionnuala Haughey, 6 Mairead McGurk, 7 Nicole McKeown, 8 Beth Cosgrove, 9 Aoife Turley, 11 Hannah Cosgrove, 12 Aine Sheehan, 13 Niamh Bellew, 15 Alexandra Burns, 16 Kerry Logan, 17 Aobvh Dunne, 18 Ciara McGlinchey, 19 Ciara Murray,

Aldergrove: 1 Anna McBride, 2 Bronach Mallon, 3 Anna Crossan, 4 Grace O’Neill, 5 Rebecca Marquess, 6 Aine Kelly, 7 Colleen McGuinness, 8 Katie Rose Bell, 9 Caoimhe Bell, 10 Caitlin Taggart, 11 Nicole Jones, 12 Bronagh McGuinness, 13 Paula Masterson, 14 Aoife Taggart, 15 Katie McCart

Referee: Stephen Higgins (Tir na nOg)

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