unior B Championship 1st Round
Simonstown v Royal Gaels
Final score: Simonstown 2-13 Royal Gaels 4-7
On Wednesday evening 10th May Simonstown Juniors played their 1st Round game of the Junior B Championship against Royal Gaels.
If you were of a pessimistic nature coming into the game you would have to think that everything was colluding against us – firstly home advantage had to be forfeited, then sickness, holidays, college and school exams depleted the squad to 13 players only being available for the game.
What a 13 they turned out to be!
Dunshaughlin started the match smartly and had a goal and a point scored within the first few minutes. These scores were quickly followed by a fine point from Eve Wardick which settled the Simonstown girls. Scores were traded for the rest of the 1st half and 2 more goals by Royal Gaels put the pressure on. A foul on Eve Wardick led to a penalty being awarded which Ellie Lane calmly put away and at the end of the 1st half the score was Simonstown 1-7 to Royal Gaels 3-4.
While the 1st half was difficult the girls worked hard throughout, with Rachel Flynn making some great runs forward to ensure that Laura McCabe always had an option on her kick outs.
The wind in the second half slightly favoured Simonstown and this coupled with some new-found confidence evident in some key players led to some great scores including the great run by Anu Bologun which resulted in a bullet of a goal, and some vital interceptions, runs and possession holding when required.
The main positive from the game overall was the work rate, each girl from 1 Laura McCabe to 13 Sinead Mooney worked hard throughout and at the end even though there were sore fingers, knees, hamstrings, hips and calves the girls never gave up. Lana Wardick and Leanne Harris are two to mention who put in huge efforts. It was great to see each of the mid-fielders Meabh Hanrahan and Rachel Flynn popping up to score some vital points and also defending when required. Ellie Lane had a great game winning a major amount of possession throughout which she distributed smartly. Eve Wardick operating in the full forward line showed that experience is a vital skill at this level – one minute she was down in the forwards scoring and the next she was in the full back line catching high balls in the goal mouth Kieran Donaghy style!
Special mention has to go to the backs who were tremendous in particular near the end when the Dunshauglin outfit were pressing hard to get a win. Laura McEnery, Orla Conlon, Jane Smyth (who lead throughout as a Captain should), Leanne Harris and Ella Martin defended as only you should.
As was said at the beginning what a 13 they turned out to be – main credit needs to go to the 4 U16’s – Orla Conlon, Laura McEnery, Ella Martin and Anu Bologun.
Royal Gaels throughout had the advantage of being able to introduce fresh legs but Simonstown hung on to achieve a well-deserved and heroic draw which was a fair result reflecting the huge passion and effort from both teams.
Final Score Simonstown 2-13 Royal Gaels 4-7
Team & Scorers:
Laura McCabe, Laura McEnery, Orla Conlon, Jayne Smyth (C), Leanne Harris, Ella Martin, Rachel Flynn (0-1), Meabh Hanrahan (0-2), Lana Wardick, Ellie Lane (1-4), Anu Bologun (1-1), Eve Wardick (0-5), Sinead Mooney.
Next up for the Juniors is Round 2 away to St Pats Stamullen on Monday 14th May at 8pm 💪