Blues advance to County Final

Jessica O'Neill under pressure from Rachel Kelleher. Pic: Caroline O'Keeffe
Jessica O’Neill under pressure from Rachel Kelleher. Pic: Caroline O’Keeffe

County Champions Newmarket-on-Fergus kept their dreams of completing a two-in-a-row alive with a ten point semi-final win over Clooney/Quin.

Newmarket-on-Fergus 3-07
Clooney/Quin 0-06
Venue: Clarecastle

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Goals proved to be the difference as two green flags from Iris Kaiser and a Rachel Kelleher effort were vital for Newmarket. At the other end Clooney/Quin never looked like doing the same.

Two of Newmarket’s three goals came in the opening twelve minutes. Alarmingly those strikes from Kaiser and Kelleher would turn out to be their only scores of the opening half as points from Deirdre Murphy and Sarah Costelloe left just two points between the sides at half-time.

Former County captain Deirdre Murphy hit over the first score of the second half but Newmarket replied with four points on the trot. Blues captain Roisin McMahon had taken over the free-taking duties and slotted over placed balls from some awkward angles to settle her side.

Aileen Kilmartin rises highest to collect the sliotar. Pic: Caroline O'Keeffe
Aileen Kilmartin rises highest to collect the sliotar. Pic: Caroline O’Keeffe

Murphy added another free for Clooney in what was their second and final score of the second half. Darren Hayes’ Newmarket finished strong with McMahon, Niki Kaiser and an excellent Aileen Kilmartin point sending them on their way. A rasping shot from Iris Kaiser sealed the win for the Blues as her strike left Sheelagh Daffy with no hope.

Defensively Newmarket were impressive with few sides in the County capable of breaking down their half-back line of Carol O’Leary, Roisin McMahon and Aimee McInerney. To hold on to the McMahon Cup they will need to get more scores from their six forwards.

It’s another disappointing finish to the season for Clooney/Quin, a team who have plenty of ability and always show a lot of promise. The concession of goals especially the two in the first quarter really hindered their chances, they came back fighting but struggled to cope with a strong finish from their opponents.

Newmarket-on-Fergus: Ciara McCarthy; Jane O’Leary, Laura McMahon, Aoife Griffin; Carol O’Leary, Roisin McMahon (0-04 3f 1’45), Aimee McInerney; Aine O’Brien, Niki Kaiser (0-02); Sharon McMahon, Gemma McInerney, Michelle McMahon; Rachel Kelleher (1-00), Aileen Kilmartin (0-01), Iris Kaiser (2-00). Subs: Annmarie Hayes for M McMahon (32)

Clooney/Quin: Sheelagh Daffy; Jessica O’Neill, Mairead Kelly, Aisling Corbett; Aisling Hannon, Orlaith Duggan, Ciara Grogan; Mairead Ryan, Kelly McLean; Kate McCarthy, Mary Clune, Claire Ryan; Christine Colleran, Deirdre Murphy (0-05 4f), Sarah Costelloe (0-01). Subs: Aoibheann Duggan for McCarthy,

Referee: Fintan McNamara (Killanena)

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