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All-Ireland Ladies Football Under 16 B Final – Longford 4-15 Waterford 3-7
Longford defeated Waterford by 4-15 to 3-7 in the All-Ireland Ladies Football Under 16 B Final on Wednesday July 24th.
All-Ireland U16 B Final
Longford 4-15 Waterford 3-7
Report by Deniese O’Flaherty
Four second half goals helped Longford clinch the All-Ireland U16 B title with victory over a spirited Waterford in Birr on Wednesday night.
It was a game that ebbed and flowed but Longford took a hold of proceedings midway through the second half and never looked back.
Although Waterford scored two goals in the opening half, it was their keeper Nessa Nic Iomhair who was the busier of the two netminders.
She pulled off an excellent save to deny Lauren McGuire in the eighth minute.
A minute later, she denied McGuire again and in the 10th minute she saved Melissa O’Kane’s effort with her feet as Longford piled on the pressure.
Waterford went ahead by a point in the 11th minute through Aoife Brazil but points from Kamille Burke and Lauren McGuire (2) gave Longford the lead in the 15th minute.
The game changed in Waterford’s favour in a two-minute spell when Aine O’Neill grabbed their first goal and shortly after, Longford goalkeeper Riane McGrath brought down Catherine Hynes and Hayley Phelan dispatched the penalty to put the Déise ahead by five.
Credit to Longford, they ended the half well and outscored Waterford five points to one in the final 10 minutes. Waterford’s Roise Ni Mhuiri was sin-binned in the 28th minute and a minute later, Melissa O’Kane levelled for Longford. A free from Phelan gave Waterford a one point lead going in at the break, 2-4 to 0-9.
Longford started the second half brightly and took the lead in the 34th minute but that only lasted for a minute as Waterford broke and Phelan found the back of the net with a great shot. The Leinster Champions’ response was a goal of their own through Molly Mulvihill.
They kicked two poor wides before Mulvihill grabbed her and her side’s second goal of the game. Kamille Burke and substitute Caoimhe Mulvey scored late goals as Longford were crowned All-Ireland U16 B Champions.
Scorers: Longford: M Mulvhill 2-02, K Burke 1-03, G Shannon (4fs), L McGuire 0-04 each, E Duggan 1-00, M O’Kane 0-02.
Waterford: H Phelan (1-00pen,2fs) 2-02, A O’Neill (1f) 1-01, E Quirke, A Brazil 0-02 each.
Longford: R McGrath; A Wilson, Ti Alaba, G Kenny; C McCormack, A Donnelly, L Shannon, G Shannon, M O’Kane; E Lynn, L McGuire, S Tully; K Burke, M Mulvihill, K Shannon.
Subs: C McNamara for S Tully (30+2), K McKeon for E Lynn (37), L Valentine for K Shannon (45), E Duggan for L Shannon (54), C Mulvey for G Kenny (57)
Waterford: N Nic Iomhair; M O’Grady, E Gough, R Jones; R Ni Mhuiri, G Nugent, E O’Neill; E, B McMaugh; H Phelan, E Quirke, C Hynes; C Walsh, A O’Neill, A Brazil.
Subs: K Kilgrew for R Jones (38), Maeve Sheridan for C Walsh (42), D Fitzgerald for M O’Grady & M Keogh for C Hynes (57), S O’Brien for A Brazil (60)
Referee: N McCormack (Laois)
All-Ireland U16 B Final
Longford v Waterford; St Brendan’s Park, Birr, 7pm
This evening’s opponents are hoping to succeed Mayo as All-Ireland U16 B champions, and Longford have some pedigree in the All-Ireland U16 Championships.
The Midlanders won the All-Ireland U16 B title back in 2011 and just three years ago, they were crowned All-Ireland U16 C champions.
Indeed, when you consider that Longford boast a 100 per cent record from appearances in All-Ireland U16 Finals, that’s an impressive strike rate.
In the 1990s, Waterford were a formidable force in the All-Ireland U16 A Championship, winning five titles in 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996 and 1998.
In more recent times, the Déise have tasted success in the All-Ireland U16 B Championship twice, in 2015 and 2017, while they were also All-Ireland U16 B Shield winners in 2009.
In their semi-finals, Longford and Waterford got past the challenges of Tyrone and Roscommon respectively.
Interestingly, Longford and Waterford scored five goals each in those games, and green flags were critical to the outcome of both fixtures, as Tyrone and Roscommon registered more points than their opponents.
Longford: R McGrath; A Wilson, T Alaba, G Kenny; C McCormack, A Donnelly, L Shannon; G Shannon, M O’Kane; E Lynn, L McGuire, S Tully; K Burke, M Mulvhill, K Shannon.
Waterford: N Nic Iomhair; M O’Grady, E Gough, R Jones; R Ní Mhuirí, G Nugent, E O’Neill; E Power, B McMaugh; H Phelan, E Quirke, C Hynes; C Walsh, A O’Neill, A Brazil.