All Ireland-Post Primary Schools LGFA Senior ‘A’ Championship
Sacred Heart School 3-7
Loreto College Cavan 1-12
A DATE with destiny beckons for Westport’s Sacred Heart senior footballers after they marched into the All-Ireland PPS Senior ‘A” championship final after a great game on Tuesday.
Westport’s own Aoife Staunton was Sacred Heart’s scorer-in-chief with 3-2, but every single one of their players left their mark on this epic clash with Loreto College.
After blazing a trail with 2-6 in the first half, the Westport school were limited to 1-1 in the second period by a dogged and resilient Loreto outfit.
The contest had descended from gun-shoot to sniper battle by the time Chloe Chambers kicked Sacred Heart’s only point of the second half – one that ultimately sent them into an All-Ireland final.
Lining out without two key players in Fionnuala McLaughlin and Ellie Hyland, Sacred Heart got off to a brilliant start.
After leaking the game’s first score, the Connacht champions strung together 1-2 in three minutes, with the excellent Hannah Sheehy teeing up Aoife Staunton for her opening goal.
A dangerous Loreto outfit hit back with five unanswered points before the momentum swung back in Sacred Heart’s favour from the 16th minute onwards.
The fightback began when captain Laura Moran kicked a free before Sheehy once again fed Staunton in front of goal; she saw her first effort saved but made no mistake on the rebound.
Three points from Sheehy, Moran and Staunton put the Mayo ladies three up before Loreto gnawed back the lead to one point by half-time.
The Cavan women hit the first three scores of the second half before Aoife Staunton put away a penalty to put Sacred Heart two points in front again.
John Coyle’s team went through something of a mini-drought for twenty minutes, but never yielded and fought doggedly for every 50-50 ball.
Loreto levelled but, with a minute to go, Sacred Heart found the wherewithal to turn the ball over and worked it up to substitute Chloe Chambers, who sent it over the bar and the Westport faithful into raptures.
Read the full match report, plus reaction from the winning camp in next week’s issue of The Mayo News.
Aoife Calvey (Westport); Eimear Geraghty (Westport), Alana McDonnell (Burrishoole), Ria Cafferkey (Westport); Ava Kelly (Burrishoole), Beth Hoban (Carnacon), Eabha Carney (Kilmeena); Sarah Mulroy (Westport), Sorcha McCarney (Westport); Lisa Hastings (Kilmeena), Laura Moran (Westport) (0-2, 2f), Hannah Sheehy (Burrishoole) (0-1); Ava Palasz (Burrishoole), Aoife Staunton (Westport) (3-2, 1 pen), Christina McEvilly (Westport) (0-1)
Subs used: Chloe Chambers (Westport) (0-1) for McEvilly (38); Saoirse Byrne (Westport) for Palasz (41).
Emma Mulvaney; Aoibheann Morrison, Ciara Rogers; Clodagh Doyle, Sarah Cullivan, Lucy Crowe, Ailbhe Kennedy; Tara McAnena, Ellie Brady (0-1); Dearbhla Brady, Ella Boylan (1-6, 2f), Emma McIntyre; Emma Keogan, Clodagh Clarke (0-4, 4f), Sarah Clarke (0-1)
Subs used: Katie O’Meara for McIntyre (34); Laura Miney for Brady (34); Kate Fegan for Cullivan (35); Kayla Barley for Rogers (60).
Referee: G Chapman (Sligo)