Rathcline ladies were crowned the county Intermediate football ‘A’ champions on Saturday last when they overcame Mostrim by the narrow margin of two points in the final replay at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park.
Rathcline had to work hard for this title and after a disappointing defeat in last year’s decider, they endured two tough games in the championship preliminaries before being forced to line out for a third time against Mostrim when their previous county final confrontation ended all square at Leo Casey Park, Ballymahon.
After some early nerves Rathcline took this game to Mostrim, recording the first three scores through Claire Greene (2) and Paula Kenny, but Mostrim then threatened and Rathcline defender Laura Guinan was forced to clear the ball off the line after a tussle for possession could have gone either way.
Mostrim eventually registered their first score through the boot of Eimear Monaghan and was soon followed by a converted Sarah Tierney free to leave just one between the sides. That was as close as it would get in the first half as the Rathcline went on to outscore their opponents four points to two to leave the half-time score 0-7 to 0-4.
Rathcline extended their lead in the second half as top scorer Claire Greene pointed beautifully from the throw-in but Mostrim struck back when a Sarah Tierney attempt dropped short and fell to Loren Katie Logan, who fired home from a difficult angle for a goal to close the gap to just a solitary point.
Mostrim retained plenty of possession but the scores just didn’t come their way and some gutsy defending from Rathcline, particularly player of the match Lauren Farrell and experienced corner-back Geraldine Hanley, added to Mostrim’s frustrations.
Mostrim added two more scores from play from the Kenny sisters while Ann Duffy and Laura Healy converted points for Rathcline before Claire Greene stepped up to perfectly execute another free and ensure victory for Rathcline who will now take on the Westmeath champions in the Leinster Intermediate Club Championship on October 6th.
RATHCLINE: Karena Mulvihill; Lauren Guinan, Aodhnait Casey, Geraldine Hanley; Patrice Nolan, Lauren Farrell, Sinead Farrell; Jo Donlon, Noleen Donlon; Aoife Bannon (0-1), Laura Healy (0-1), Claire Greene (0-6, 3 frees); Paula Kenny (0-1)), Michelle McCormack, Ann Duffy (0-2).
Sub used: Caoimhe Murray for M McCormack.
MOSTRIM: Michelle Burke; Stephanie Reilly, Leanne Keegan, Rebecca O’Hara; Nikita Cassidy, Louise Monaghan, Sinead Noonan; Briana Connell, Gemma Kenny (0-1); Oonagh Hussey, Sarah Tierney (0-1, free), Eimear Monaghan (0-2); Catriona Monaghan, Edel Kenny (0-2), Loren Katie Logan (1-0).
Sub used: Megan Reilly.
Referee: Patrick Maguire (Granard).