Drumragh Ladies positive debut season at senior level continued with a third victory on the bounce on Monday night. Carrickmore were the visitors to Clanabogan Park and fell to the home side on a scoreline of Drumragh 3-7 Carrickmore 2-8.
Drumragh started brightly and goaled after three minutes when Amy Cox’s speculative shot ended up in the back of the away net. Carrickmore responded almost immediately and scored a goal of their own after 5 minutes. However this didn’t deter the home side and the Sarsfields struck again when Full Forward, Clodagh Loughran fired to the net following excellent build up play involving Neamh Woods and Amy Cox. The home side increased their lead with a fine run and point from inspirational midfielder, Neamh Woods. Drumragh suffered a setback when right half forward, Breanna Breslin was sin-binned and Carrickmore made the extra player tell when they recorded a goal and three points without response in an eight minute spell to leave the visitors in front by two approaching the closing minutes of the first half.
Fortune favours the brave however and following another attack, the Carrickmore defender helped Clodagh Loughran’s shot into the back of her own goal under pressure from the inrushing Saffron Baxter to ease the Drumragh girls back in front. Both sides swapped points just before half time with Drumragh’s score coming courtesy of a long distance point from Amy Cox to leave the minimum score between the teams. The half time score was Drumragh 3-2 Carrickmore 2-4.
Drumragh started the second half brightly and Neamh Woods increased the lead with a well taken point after 31 minutes. Carrickmore struck twice in a 3 minute spell to leave the sides level after 35 minutes. Both sides enjoyed a period of defensive dominance with the Sarsfields defensive unit of goalkeeper, Oonagh McMackin, Coblaith McKenna, Joanne Barrett, Saoirse Mullin, Rachel Cleary, Josephine Quinn and Beth Donaghy putting in a superb shift against a talented and mobile Carrickmore attack.
Carrickmore went in front after 39 minutes with a point from a free kick and both sides wasted good opportunities to build on their tallies. Amy Cox drew the teams level on 49 minutes with a fine score following good work by substitute Julie Anne Quinn. Drumragh kicked on in the latter stages of the game with some excellent approach play as the midfield pair of Neamh Woods and Laura Harkin gained the upper hand. The forwards led by the experienced pairing of Clodagh Loughran and Amy Cox and ably assisted by Sorcha McKenna, Grace O’Neill, Breanna Breslin and Saffron Baxter worked extremely hard to fashion scoring opportunities. An Amy Cox point put the home side back in front by the minimum score before the same player tagged on another point following great work by Julie Anne Quinn and Grace O’Neill to leave two between the teams before Carrickmore reduced the deficit to the minimum after 62 minutes, their first score in more than 20 minutes. Back came the home side and excellent interchange play between Josephine Quinn, Neamh Woods and Beth Donaghy presented Amy Cox with another scoring opportunity which she took to complete the scoring. Referee Frankie Sweeney brought the proceedings to a close with a final scoreline of Drumragh 3-7 Carrickmore 2-8.
This was an excellent team performance and was well received by the vociferous home support. Seamus Woods’ young team have acquitted themselves well in their first season at this level and it augurs well for the future. With one game to go, the Sarsfields girls can look forward to another season at the top level.
Special mention must go to the County players on show who turned out for their clubs and put in such a fantastic shift following their exploits in the All Ireland Intermediate Semi Final against Sligo just 48 hours earlier. Well done to Neamh, Joanne and Josephine and Carrickmore’s Gemma Begley, not only on their superb result on Saturday for the County but also on their contributions to an excellent game last night.
Drumragh: O McMackin; C McKenna, J Barrett, S Mullin; R Cleary, J Quinn, B Donaghy; N Woods (0-2) L Harkin; G O’Neill, A Cox (1-5) B Breslin; S Baxter, C Loughran (2-0), S McKenna;
Sub: J A Quinn for S Baxter (45 mins)