Tesco All-Ireland Intermediate Ladies Club Football Championship Final – West Clare Gaels (Clare) 3-9 St Conleth’s (Laois) 0-8
by Jackie Cahill
WEST Clare Gaels captured the Tesco All-Ireland Intermediate Ladies club football title in Nenagh on Sunday thanks to a comfortable 3-9 to 0-8 victory against St Conleth’s. West Clare Gaels suffered a heart-breaking All-Ireland junior final defeat in 2007 but atoned for that loss in style with an impressive ten-point victory against their Laois opponents at Nenagh’s MacDonagh Park. Katie Geoghegan, Niamh Lardner and experienced Clare county star Majella Griffin were the scoring stars on a famous day for the club as 15-year-old Shauna Harvey claimed the player of the match award on the back of an outstanding performance.
West Clare Gaels, playing with the aid of a first half breeze, were always in control of this game and led all the way after Leanne Lynch opened the scoring with a point from play. At half-time, West Clare Gaels led by 1-6 to 0-2 and the goal was scored by Lardner six minutes before half-time, following an inspirational run from defence by Sinead Kelly.
Early in the second half, West Clare Gaels were awarded a penalty and Geoghegan made no mistake with a comprehensive finish. Geoghegan netted again five minutes from time and was unlucky not to complete a hat-trick of goals as she rattled a late drive against the St Conleth’s crossbar. Overall, this was a most impressive display from West Clare Gaels, who had ten starters from the team that lined out in the 2007 junior decider. West Clare Gaels dominated proceedings but for St Conleth’s, Claire O’Connell enjoyed a fine game and finished with a personal tally of seven points, including five frees.
Scorers for West Clare Gaels: K Geoghegan 2-1 (1-0 pen), N Lardner 1-2, M Griffin 0-4 (3f), M Kelly & L Lynch 0-1 each.
Scorers for St Conleth’s: C O’Connell 0-7 (5f), M Allen 0-1