Shannon Gaels 0-7 Leitrim 1-4
June 17, 2021 By Amy Brett
Shannon Gaels and Leitrim played out a low-scoring draw in the New York Ladies GAA Junior Football Championship at Gaelic Park Tuesday evening.
In an intense tit-for-tat battle, the two teams were well matched in all aspects of the field resulting in a tight game from start to finish.
Shannon Gaels opened the scoring with a point from Fiona Mullan, followed quickly by a matching score from her sister Catriona.
The Gaels seemed to dominate the opening fifteen minutes with their forwards inflicting a tremendous amount of pressure on the Leitrim defense. Francis Reilly added to the Gael’s score sheet with another point and it appeared as though their opponents were being left behind.
However, Leitrim captain Laura Wynne led by example and spurred the team back into contention with some super work in the half-back line that resulted in a pin-pointed pass straight into the hands of Shauna McGrath. The nifty forward wasted no time in turning and putting the ball into the back of the net to level the teams at the first water break.
But the Gaels responded by adding two more points to their tally; Fiona Mullan bagging her second of the day and Roisin getting her first.
The first point for Leitrim came soon after from Katie King and a second point from Lauren Redican had the game delicately balances at halftime on a scoreline of 5 points to 1-2 at halftime.
While Shannon Gaels dominated possession for most of the first half – and seemed to be on top of things – Leitrim was not giving up that easily.
Leitrim started the second half with a new lease of life; Lauren Redican was doing a massive amount of tracking up and down the field and the Gaels girls struggled to get the ball out of their own half. Aoife Mahers stepped up, as per usual, acting as a sweeper to clear any dangerous Leitrim balls coming her way and she was the standout performer for the Gaels on the night.
As the clock ticked on, Leitrim went one point ahead; McGrath adding to her tally with a lovely point from the right wing.
The Mullans duo were at it again though, with Catriona popping over her second point to level matters.
A number of wides from both teams kept the girls’ even with only 10 minutes to go. That’s when Roisin popped over another one for Shannon Gaels and it looked as though she had locked a crucial 3 points on the championship leaderboard for her side.
The Leitrim ladies weren’t going down without a fight though, and in the dying minutes, Roisin Plunkett popped one over the bar to bring the teams back to level, leaving us with a full-time score of 0-7 to 1-4.
Laura Wynne was the absolute stand-out player for Leitrim, in a true captain’s role, winning ball and creating runs all night long. Richelle Cleary, Shauna McGrath and Megan Fitzpatrick were also in top form for the side.
The Reilly and Mullans sister duos for the Gaels impressed massively, and great things lay ahead for both teams in this Junior Championship season.
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To submit a match report, please contact Michael Dorgan via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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