Wednesday, 21 March 2018 at 01:07 AM Galvin Early
The phrase 'a tale of two half's' is one that is oft overused. However tonight in Pairc Naomh Columba it was a saying that was more than apt. Owen Roes ladies- making their return to adult football after a 2 season absence- had struggled somewhat in the first half, and with 3-8 conceded like likely to ship a heavy defeat. However a second half transformation saw them hold their hosts pointless in the second half in a match where they could've snatched something from.
It was the home side that started sharp and they quickly rattled up a 2-4 to no score lead in the opening ten minutes with Ellen McGowan prominant for Urney. Nonetheless the O'Neills started to settle at this point and grab a foot hold in the contest. Amy-Rose Harte generated their first score of the season with a storming run and conversion. The hosts though replied with a major of their own, despite a decent initial save by Shauna Kelly.
Back came Owen Roes and Nicole Stewart rattled the cross bar after 15 minutes, with Riognach Devine being so close to punch home the rebound.
The Urney ladies had another purple patch in the closing stages of the half, and four unanswered scores left them 3-8 to 0-1 ahead at the interval.
It was a much more determined, and organised Owen Roes that appeared for the second half, and Michelle Christy set the tone for half with a strong run and score. The Leckpatrick ladies were doing all the running at this stage as midfield duo Roisín Devine and Hannah Corey started to influence the game.
Naomh Barr was introduced to the game with 15 minutes of the half to go, and her pace coupled with the tenacity of Stewart and Harte put Urney onto the back foot. Barr blasted over when a goal was on the cards, and from the kick out the hard working Harte drew a fine save from the Urney stopper.
Two minutes later though, and Owen Roes got their goal. Captain Roisín Devine was fouled when in the art of shooting, and Barr stepped up to send the keeper the wrong way.
Urney were restricted to loan breaks at this stage, but they floundered thanks to stoic defending by Christy, Caoimhe McNulty, Chloe Devine, and Keri McMenamin. A sweeping move started at the back via one of Christy's many interceptions and Corey clipped over via passes from Aoife McCrossan, Darragh Brady and Stewart.
Owen Roes were pushing hard at this point for the goal that would take them back into the game, but despite their best efforts luck was a stranger, and their final score came from an angled Barr shot.
Despite the negative result, the Owen Roes ladies will generate numerous positives from the game where they gave their all. The superb efforts of Harte, Christy and company augers well for ladies football if they can maintain their push.
Team: Shauna Kelly, Michelle Christy (0-1), Keri McMenamin, Caoimhe McNulty, Chloe Devine, Aoife McCrossan, Roisín Devine, Hannah Corey (0-1), Riognach Devine, Darragh Brady, Amy Rose Harte (0-1), Nicole Stewart, Shannon Donaghey. Subs: Naomh Barr (1-2) for Donaghey (34 mins).