Lidl National Football League Final Replay
Magnificent Tipperary girls win Division 3 league title, gain promotion and extend unbeaten run to ten games.
By Paudie Everard, Moyle Rovers
Tipperary are Division 3 champions following a two point win over Wexford in the replayed league final played in Birr on Sunday May 14th. Tipperary faced into the strong breeze for the first half but it was Wexford who settled best with early points. With a quarter of an hour gone Wexford led by four points to one, Tipperary's only score a pointed free from Aishling Moloney. Scores were hard to come by as the Wexford defence were playing very well. Tipperary then hit a good patch and had the next three points from play. Two from Orla O'Dwyer and one from Jennifer Grant to draw level on four points each.
Wexford stepped up a gear as the Slaneysiders scored a point followed by a goal and three points. Their goal was helped by the strong wind which carried the high ball to the net. Tipperary had an Aishling Moloney point and an Aisling McCarthy free to leave them trailing by five points at half time 1-8 to 0-6. Wexford had looked the more composed team and their defence was playing very well, restricting the Tipperary forwards from numerous scoring chances.
Tipperary would need a good start to second half to prevent the game getting away from them. Aisling McCarthy scored two very good frees with the aid of the breeze as Wexford had Bernie Breen sin binned for persistent fouling. Aishling Moloney then scored the next three points from play to draw level. Tipperary then went two points ahead with a Gillian O'Brien point and another Aishling Moloney point putting her player of the match award beyond doubt. Everything was going Tipperary's way having scored the last seven points but the game had a few twist in the sand turns yet before the issue would be decided.
Gillian O'Brien was sin binned on forty five minutes and Roisin Howard was introduced as Tipperary tried to restructure. Wexford found new impetus and scored their first point of the second half. On twenty minutes Maria Curley was sin binned and a minute later Aishling Moloney also faced the long walk to the side-line having being adjudged to have fouled a Wexford player. Wexford drew level on the resultant free and a twelve player Tipperary team now faced a full fifteen Wexford team.
It was backs to wall stuff as the Tipperary forwards helped out defensively and everyone gave a supreme effort to do the impossible. The game was now at frantic pace as both sides knew victory could be theirs. A Wexford player was then sin binned as Gillian O'Brien came back on the field of play. Wexford still had the numerical advantage but Tipperary threw everything they had at the game. They were rewarded with two frees and they were expertly put over the bar by Aisling McCarthy to close out a magnificent result as Wexford tried in vain for the last minute goal that might snatch it for them. Holding Wexford scoreless when they had three extra players was decisive for Tipperary and they can look back on this match with great pride. It was a testament to their character and courage when the odds looked heavily stacked against them.
Tipperary Captain Samantha Lambert accepted the cup on behalf of the team and Tipperary now look forward to division two football next year where the challenges will be more suited to a team of this calibre. Congratulations to all involved in the win. It was the perfect end to a great league campaign that had many highlights. It all began with a magnificent comeback against Wexford in the opening game when nine points down well into the second half they went on to win by two goals. Aisling McCarthy scored ten points against Roscommon which earned her player of the month for February and culminated in the replayed final with a player of match display from Aishling Moloney who scored five points from play. Unbeaten all through the league Shane Royanne was a worthy recipient of the Lidl/Irish Daily Star Manager of the Month during the week. His selection team of Alan O'Connor, Elaine Harte, Tony Smith and Physio, Maria Aherne deserve great praise for their commitment to this team and to Ladies Football in Tipperary. The championship beckons and Limerick await in the first round in June. We wish the team and Management team the very best of luck in Championship ahead but in the meantime we heartily congratulate all involved with this hearting win.
Tipperary Team - Lauren Fitzpatrick; Brid Condon, Siobhan Condon, Emma Buckley; Niamh Lonergan, Samantha Lambert (C), Maria Curley; Elaine Fitzpatrick, Jennifer Grant (0-1); Orla O'Dwyer (0-2), Aisling McCarthy (0-5, 5f), Gillian O'Brien (0-1); Caoimhe Condon, Aishling Moloney (0-6, 1f), Mairead Morrissey.
Subs used - Roisin Howard for Niamh Lonergan (46th), Elaine Kelly for Mairead Morrissey (52nd)
Panel - Patricia Hickey, Catriona Walsh, Eimear Myles, Roisin McGrath, Rachael O'Donnell, Laura Dillon, Maire Condon, Alison Lonergan, Nicola Loughnane, Aoibhe O'Shea, Aoife Corcoran, Sarah Everard.
Manager - Shane Ronayne. Mentors: Alan O'Connor, Elaine Harte, Tony Smith. Physio Maria Aherne.
All Ireland Under 14 Blitz
Commiserations to Tipperary Ladies Football Under 14 team who were defeated by Galway in the All Ireland Under 14 A Blitz Final on Saturday last in Rathleague, Portlaoise.
Post Primary Blitz
On Wednesday last Tipperary Ladies Football held their Under 15 Post Primary schools blitz. Well done to all 17 participating teams.
The A Final was contested by Loreto Clonmel and Colaiste dun Iascaigh, Cahir. Loreto Clonmel were the stronger and defeated Colaiste dun Iascaigh, Cahir on a score line Loreto Clonmel 3-3 Colaiste dun Iascaigh, Cahir 1-0.
In the B Final St. Anne's, Tipperary Town overcame Templemore; St.Anne's 2-4
While the C Final was a tightly contested game with neighbours Cashel Community School and Presentation Clonmel competing against each other; Cashel Community School B 3-2 Presentation Clonmel B 2-2.
On Tuesday, May 16th Tipperary Post Primary Schools will compete in the Tipperary Ladies Football Under 14 Post Primary School Blitz in Rockwell College.