Three-in-a-row county titles for Ballylanders ladies footballers

Celebration time for Ballylanders ladies footballers, 2017 Limerick senior champions, following their victory v Monagea last Saturday. (TF)

Ballylanders 3-10 Monagea 1-5

Ballylanders ladies senior football team made their own bit of history in Bruff on Saturday last when they captured the Limerick senior championship for the third year-in-a-row. Most of the present squad of player were involved, when the trophy was won for the first time in 2015 and retained in 2016.

The Bally girls completely dominated the first half. They were first to every ball and their accurate passing and running off the ball, caused Monagea all sorts of problems. Monagea were on the back foot from the throw-in, as Cathy Mee and Emma Kelly dominated the midfield area.

Full forward Jackie Lynch pictured scoring a goal, in Ballylanders ladies county final victory v Monagea in Bruff last Saturday. (TF)

Rosemary Rea opened the scoring with a fine point which was quickly followed by another from Caoimhe Clancy. Monagea responded with two points from frees. In the next 15 minutes Bally laid the foundations for this victory. A goal from Cathy Mee was quickly followed by another from full forward Jackie Lynch.

Further points were added by Áine McGrath, Kristy Carroll and two each from Rosemary Rea and Caoimhe Clancy. The forwards were very effective in front of goal and made the most of the chances that came their way. As half-time approached Monagea replied with another point.

This left the half-time score Ballylanders 2-8 Monagea 0-3.

Monagea began the second half positively and a good move produced a goal after 5 minutes. When they added two points, the gap was reduced to six. The Bally girls dug deep and some great play by the half back line of Triona O’Donnell, Clodagh McGrath and Áine McGrath, turned the tide in Bally’s favour.

Fifteen minutes elapsed before Bally registered their first score of the half. Again, Caoimhe Clancy and Rosemary Rea provided two valuable points. With 10 minutes remaining Andrea O’Sullivan received a ball in the Monagea square and was dragged to the ground. Kristy Carroll scored the resultant penalty at the second attempt.

HOME ARE THE HEROINES! Caoimhe O’Brien, Rosemary Rea, captain Cathy Mee, Kristy Carroll and Andrea O’Sullivan, returning to Ballylanders last Saturday evening having been crowned Limerick ladies senior football champions for the third year-in-a-row. (TF)

This goal killed the momentum of Monagea and they failed to score for the remainder of the game. Bally ran out comfortable winners on a final scoreline of Ballylanders 3-10 Monagea 1-5.

Karen Baily was very solid in goal and the full backline of Aoife Gallahue, Mairead Kelly and Maria Murphy were always on top. Kathleen Martin, Rosemary Rea and Andrea O’Sullivan worked tirelessly in the half forward line. While Jackie Lynch, Kristy Carroll and Caoimhe Clancy caused all sorts of problems for the Monagea defence.

As a result of this victory Ballylanders will represent Limerick in the Munster championship. Their first game will be a semi-final in which they play the champions of Tipperary or Waterford, on October 7 or 8.

Team and scorers: – Karen Bailey, Aoife Gallahue, Mairead Kelly, Maria Murphy, Triona O’Donnell, Clodagh McGrath, Áine McGrath (0-1), Emma Kelly, Cathy Mee (capt,1-0), Andrea O’Sullivan, Rosemary Rea (0-4), Kathleen Martin, Caoimhe Clancy (0-4), Jackie Lynch (1-0), Kristy Carroll (1-1). Aoife O’Sullivan.