Feis na nGleann – Senior Camogie Final
Sunday July 14
Loughgiel Shamrocks 2-15 Dunloy Cuchullains 3-11
Brendan McTaggart reports from the Feis na nGleann, Glenariffe
With a little over a quarter of this game remaining, it looked like there was a shock on the cards. Loughgiel have been close to untouchable in the Feis and Dunloy had taken a five point lead thanks to the brilliance of Nicole O’Neill from placed ball. The Shamrocks showed why they are the Queen’s of the Feis however and edged their rivals by one point in a pulsating hour of camogie to make it sweet 16, an incredible run of successive wins for the Shamrocks.
Roisin McCormick’s 45th minute goal sparked the revival, the young Shamrock finishing the game with a personal tally of 1-4 in another superb display with Christina Laverty bagging their first major in the opening half. Dunloy played with such ferocity and intensity however and got goals in the first half at crucial times. Their first from O’Neill before two in two minutes from Michaela and Erin Elliott gave them a six point lead at the end of the first quarter and while Loughgiel came back, the Cuchullains held a two point lead at the interval.
Dunloy continued with the same intensity after the interval and were worthy of their five point lead by the 43rd minute but Loughgiel pegged them back in the final quarter. With the game played in energy sapping heat, the Cuchullains couldn’t break the momentum and Loughgiel did enough in the end to take a one point lead.
Loughgiel started the contest brightly with three white flags raised in the opening five minutes. Roisin McCormick, Christine and Cara Laverty with the scores before the Cuchullains scored the opening goal of the contest. Nicole O’Neill stood over a free 55 yards from goal and with the sliotar dropping, no one could manage a touch with the ball dropping into the back of the net.
The site of the green flag being raised was exactly what Dunloy needed and Michaela Elliott scored their first point of the match in the seventh minute to give them the lead. McCormick and Amy Boyle split the uprights either side of a Caoimhe Molloy point to leave the sides tied after the opening 10 minutes but Dunloy were beginning to find gaps in the Loughgiel defence and scored two majors in as many minutes to take control of the game. Michaela Elliott with the first with a forceful drive and Erin Elliott with the second, owing much to the initial run and chance created by Nicole O’Neill.
Loughgiel responded by scoring their first major, Christina Laverty collecting a long delivery before rifling the sliotar beyond Lauren Elliott. Both sides went toe to toe in the last ten minutes of the first half with Dunloy hitting points from O’Neill (three) and Molloy in answer to Anna Connolly, McCormick, Katie Lynn and Emma McMullan (two) to leave the Cuchullains ahead by two at the short whistle.
Half Time: Dunloy 3-6 Loughgiel 1-10
The opening 10 minutes of the second half was dominated by the free takers from both sides. McMullan with a brace in the opening minutes to tie the scores before O’Neill landed four for Dunloy, two from distance to double the Cuchullains half time advantage after ten minutes of the second half. When she split the posts to take her tally to 1-8 for the match, O’Neill looked like she was pointing the Cuchullains to an unlikely victory. They were five points ahead and had all the answers to any questions the Shamrocks were posing.
Just like the first half when the Cuchullains were kicked into life with the sight of the green flag being raised, the Shamrocks were the same after Roisin McCormick’s major. Emma McMullan’s free dropping short and the Dunloy defence failed to clear their lines with McCormick in the right place to pull the sliotar to the back of the Dunloy net in the 45th minute.
Emma McMullan landed her fifth point of the match, collecting a short free from Emma McFadden before splitting the uprights. Another indication of the Shamrocks remaining cool under pressure before McCormick landed her fourth point from play to tie the sides in the 48th minute. The game was still in the balance and while Loughgiel held the momentum, Dunloy were defending for their lives, they just couldn’t get the break in midfield that would stop the rot. Loughgiel were applying pressure and Emma McMullan’s sixth point of the final in the 53rd minute ultimately proved to be the winner as the Shamrocks kept the Cuchullains under wraps in the time that remained.
Loughgiel Camog’s, Queens of the Feis once again.
Loughgiel: Megan Coyle; Charlene Campbell, Chloe Higgins, Maria Lynn; Emma McFadden, Maeve Connolly, Shauna Devlin; Amy Boyle, Lucia McNaughton; Roisin McCormick, Emma McMullan, Katie Lynn; Anna Connolly, Christina Laverty, Cara Laverty.
Scorers: Roisin McCormick 1-4; Emma McMullan 0-6 (4 f’s, 1 ’45); Christina Laverty 1-1; Amy Boyle 0-1; Katie Lynn 0-1; Anna Connolly 0-1; Cara Laverty 0-1.
Dunloy: Lauren Elliott; Annie Laverty, Chloe Drain, Leann Reid; Eimer McMullan, Katie Laverty, Kathryn Boyle; Sinead Martin, Shannon Woulahan; Caoimhe Molloy, Nicole O’Neill, Erin Elliott; Michaela Elliott, Aileen McManus, Dearbhaill Magill.
Subs: Nicola O’Neill 1-8 (5 f’s, 2 ‘45’s); Michaela Elliott 1-1; Erin Elliott 1-00; Caoimhe Molloy 0-2.
Referee: Maggie O’Connell (Geraldine’s, Portglenone)