Big Success for Colaiste Abhainn Ri
by PRO on the 18th of January 2023
Coláiste Abhainn Rí Callan 3-9
Sacred Heart SS, Tullamore 0-2
By Robert Cribbin
Coláiste Abhainn Rí Callan celebrated Leinster camogie glory when running out dominant winners over Sacred Heart, Tullamore in the provincial decider on Saturday afternoon.
The Kilkenny school were never troubled with Aisling O’Shea and Ava Brett netting goals as well as Ciara O’Shea top scoring with seven points.
While it was a free-flowing attacking showing from the winners, they were also very solid at the back as the Callan defence restricted Tullamore to just two second half Chloe Fogarty frees.
The game, played in bitterly cold conditions on the all-weather pitch at Heywood, saw Callan start with a strong wind behind them in the opening period.
After tight exchanges in the opening few minutes, Callan eventually took the lead with Windgap midfielder Ciara O’Shea knocking over a free after Ava Brett was initially fouled.
Callan then doubled their advantage a couple of minutes later with O’Shea on target again as she scored from play on the counter.
Despite the big winning margin, Colaiste Abhainn Ri still squandered a number of scoring opportunities until Ava Brett struck for the game’s opening goal in the 10th minute when the centre forward pounced on a loose ball to score after Tullamore stopper Leah Gallagher earlier made a great save.
While Gallagher was out of luck on that occasion, the Sacred Heart joint-captain then produced a pair saves to deny both Ciara and Aisling O’Shea.
The Callan attacks continued to motor in a half that was all one-way traffic and after Ciara O’Shea knocked over a well taken 45, the Kilkenny side led 1-3 to 0-0.
A couple more goal opportunities went astray before Aisling O’Sullivan and Molly Conroy pointed either side of Ciara O’Shea knocking over another 45.
A nine-point half-time advantage looked a sizeable one for Callan but they were against the elements in the second period.
Tullamore got themselves off the mark when Chloe Fogarty knocked over a free and she doubled her tally a couple of minutes later.
A Ciara O’Shea free kept the winners ticking over and they soon found their second win with the impressive midfielder scoring twice more from play as Coláiste Abhainn Rí led 1-9 to 0-2 by the halfway mark of the second half.
The game was all but settled at that stage but Callan still had time to launch a late flourish to warm the supporters in attendance.
Aisling O’Shea, who’d been relatively quiet up till then, soon came to life as she scored the first of her two goals when finding the net with a ground shot in the 50th minute.
A third Callan goal then arrived a couple of minutes later with O’Shea finding the target again when scoring on the back of Ava Brett having a shot saved from close in.
Despite being outclassed on the day, Sacred Heart Tullamore kept at it until the end but a stubborn Callan rearguard kept them at bay on numerous occasions and as well as claiming the Leinster crown, Callan can now look ahead to an All-Ireland semi-final in a couple of weeks time.
Teams and Scorers
Coláiste Abhainn Rí Callan – Ciara O’Shea (0-7, 0-2 frees and 0-2 45s); Aisling O’Shea (2-0); Ava Brett (1-0); Aisling O’Sullivan, Molly Conroy (0-1 each).
Sacred Heart SS Tullamore – Chloe Fogarty (0-2, 0-2fs).
Colaiste Abhainn Rí Callan – Jenny Saunders (Windgap); Aoife Power (St Brigid’s), Jessica Cuddy (Tullaroan), Eleanor Hayes (Windgap); Orlaith O’Shea (Windgap), Nathania Jackson (Windgap), Aisling O’Sullivan (John Lockes); Emer Smith (Windgap), Ciara O’Shea (Windgap); Molly Conroy (St Brigid’s), Ava Brett (St Brigid’s), Caoimhe Power (Windgap); Chloe O’Donovan (John Lockes), Elly Holland (Tullaroan), Aisling O’Shea (Windgap).
Sacred Heart SS Tullamore – Leah Gallagher; Niamh Spollen, Blathnaid Egan, Ellie Lawlor; Emily Conlon, Hannah Troy, Aisling Hughes; Molly Kelly, Bridin Walsh; Lauren Leavy, Chloe Fogarty, Maebh Rouse; Tara Cleary, Jane Murray, Kerri Healion.
Referee – Kieran Bowe (Laois)
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