Junior Ladies

Junior Ladies 2017
Mentors: Alan Murph Mullen
Johnno Kinahan

​​​​​Westmeath Ladies GAA Junior Championship - 2nd July 2017
Athlone 3-9 Ballycomoyle 3-7

Athlone Junior Ladies win opening match in a tough battle.

Athlone Ladies opened their Junior Championship campaign with a significant win over Ballycomoyle in a tough contest in Pairc Ciaran on Sunday. This was a close contest, contentious at times, and in a match where Ballycomoyle held the lead for long periods, the Athlone Ladies had to dig deep to take victory.

Ballycomoyle took hold of the game early with a two early points but a superb goal from Cathy McGettigan settled Athlone. A further point Ballycomoyle point was answered by a well-taken score from Lorna Mulvihill, but the visitors then scored their first goal to lead 1-1 to 1-3. Athlone responded to this setback in the best possible manner when Niamh Byrne turned over possession and released Ally Mahon who found Chloe Moran in space, and she finished well for her side’s second goal.  At the other end, the pacy and skillful Ballycomoyle forwards were causing problems for the Athlone full-back line and they added a fourth point to bring themselves level, before scoring their second goal to open up a three point lead.  Again, however, Athlone replied with a goal, this time from Lorna Mulvihill, but the visitors regained the initiative with a couple of points to lead by two at half time.

The Athlone half-back line of Alannah Reynolds-Duignan, Kasey O’Neill and Lil Stuart-Trainor, and midfield of Cathy McGettigan and Eimear O’Rourke, got on top in the early stages of the second half and scores from the excellent Siobhan Coleman and Aoife Gill brought them level again, before corner-back Caoimhe Mannion gave Athlone the lead with a wonderful point after one of her trademark runs out of defence.

The home side were able to take advantage of a strong subs bench to introduce fresh legs as the humid conditions took their toll on energy levels, while the full-back line of Lauren O’Connor, Katie Henshaw and Caoimhe Mannion, augmented by Shauna Moylan, got to grips with the Ballycomoyle full-forward line and the visitors found scores a lot harder to come by in the second half, although they did add a point to bring themselves level again.

With the game in the melting pot as it entered its closing minutes, the experience of Aoife Gill showed when she finished neatly over the bar to edge Athlone into the lead, while Niamh Byrne gave Athlone some breathing space when she finished nicely after a surging run.  This forced Ballycomoyle to go throw everything at Athlone as they went for the match-winning goal, but keeper Aoife Temple and her defence held firm and Athlone held on to win a thrilling clash by 3-9 to 3-7.

Athlone:  Aoife Temple, Lauren O’Connor, Katie Henshaw, Caoimhe Mannion 0-1, Alannah Reynolds Duignan, Kasey O’Neill, Lil Stuart-Trainor, Eimear O’Rourke. Cathy MGettigan 1-0, Siobhan Coleman 0-2, Niamh Byrne 0-2, Ally Mahon, Chloe Moran 1-0, Aoife Gill 0-3, Lorna Mulvihill 1-1. Subs: Anna Redmond, Shauna Moylan, Ellen O’Connell, Sorcha O’Rourke, Sinead Dunning, Ciara Higgins, Amy Brill, Kelly Brill.

​​​​​Ladies’ Division 4 League Final
Athlone 1-11 St Joseph’s 3-6
Athlone ladies’ team suffered an agonising loss in the division 4 league final when they were defeated  by St Joseph’s by a single point after a thrilling (if nerve-wracking!) game in Tang on Sunday evening.

Athlone got off to the worst possible start when St Joseph’s scored an excellent goal in the first minute and, although Emma Carey opened Athlone’s account soon after with a fine point, the Streamstown girls were stronger in the opening stages as Athlone looked nervous and two points from frees stretched their lead to four after ten minutes.  They almost got a second goal soon after but Aoife Temple pulled off a great save to deny them and instead three well-taken points from Kelly Brill, Cathy McGettigan and Chloe Moran reduced the gap to just a point.  Athlone were now on top but were a little bit anxious in front of goal and were unable to find an equaliser, and instead St Joseph’s doubled their lead with a point on the break.  A good score from the returning Lorna Mulvihill brought Athlone back to within a point again, before it looked like the Shannonsiders had snatched the lead just before the break when Kelly Brill forced the ball home after a goalmouth scramble, however the goal was harshly disallowed.  Athlone did have the final say of the opening period when Lorna Mulvihill evened things up with the last kick of the half and they would have been pleased to be going in on level terms after their slow start.

Athlone started the second half as they had ended the first when Chloe Moran gave them the lead for the first time, but they were dealt a hammer blow soon after when St Joseph’s struck two goals in quick succession.  Chloe Moran responded with a fine solo point to keep Athlone in touch, but St Joseph’s were buoyant after their two goals and they added three more points to lead by seven with 10 minutes remaining.  To their credit, the Athlone girls refused to throw in the towel and after another Lorna Mulvihill point, they won a penalty.  Unfortunately, however, Katie Henshaw’s placed effort went agonisingly wide of the post with the keeper beaten, but even after this setback, Athlone refused to give up and Nadia Molloy reduced the gap further with a point.  Athlone did finally get the goal they deserved with a superb strike from Brionna Geoghegan, and with lots of time added on due to several injuries, they kept piling on the pressure in search of a late winner.  Brionna Geoghegan was unlucky to have a powerful free blocked on the line and, although the same player then added a point from a free to reduce the deficit to the bare minimum, there was no more time for Athlone to find an equaliser and St Joseph’s had hung on to win by the narrowest of margins, 3-6 to 1-11.

This was a heartbreaking defeat for the Athlone women who will feel that they did not reach the high level of performance that they did in earlier rounds of the league, but still came agonisingly close to winning the game.  However the team have made great progress this year under the management team of Alan ‘Murph’ Mullen, Johnno Kinahan and ‘Aunty Sheila’ Buckley-Byrne, and with huge numbers attending every training session and the great team spirit shown by the girls in the clubhouse after the game, they can look forward to the championship with confidence.

Best wishes to Emma Carey for a speedy recovery from the injury she suffered during the game.

Athlone:  Aoife Temple, Shauna Moylan, Katie Henshaw, Caoimhe Mannion, Lil Stuart-Trainor, Alannah Reynolds-Duignan, Kasey O’Neill, Cathy McGettigan (0-1), Eimear O’Rourke, Emily Henshaw, Lorna Mulvihill (0-3), Niamh Byrne, Kelly Brill (0-1), Emma Carey (0-1), Chloe Moran (0-3)  Subs Used:  Brionna Geoghegan (1-1), Nadia Molloy (0-1), Ally Mahon.

LGFA Division 4 League:

Athlone 3-10 Loughnavalley 1-8

Athlone produced a solid display to claim their second win of the Westmeath LGFA Division 4 League when they defeated Loughnavalley by 3-10 to 1-8 on Sunday last 2nd April.  This was a much anticipated fixture between two teams who have built up a close rivalry over the last few years and the match itself produced some great football in perfect conditions on the Davy Allen pitch.

After an evenly matched opening period, Eimear O’Rourke and Siobhan Coleman took hold of the midfield with good support from Brionna Geoghegan and the half-back line of Alannah Reynolds, Lil Stuart Trainor and Kasey O’Neill.  The full-back line of Lauren O’Connor, Katie Henshaw and Caoimhe Mannion, along with goalkeeper Aoife Temple were excellent in restricting the visitors' scoring opportunities, while up front the forwards worked well together to create several chances, with Niamh Byrne, Grace Halligan, Siobhan Coleman, Nadia Molloy, Cathy McGettigan, Lil Stuart Trainor and Emily Henshaw all getting some some excellent scores . Probably the best two scores of the game came from corner-back Caoimhe Mannion whose surging runs forward from corner-back, allied with some neat hand passing with the forwards along the way, led to two fine points.

The running game was a feature of Athlone’s display and their tenacity was rewarded particularly in the second half when they dominated the exchanges in every position. Emma Carey‘s persistence and the addition of Emma Johnson, Sorcha O'Rourke and the hard working Chloe Moran alongside the tenacious Shauna Moylan gave Athlone the added freshness they needed to see out a very disciplined and clinical display. Indeed, the excellent attendances that Athlone have been having at training under the new management team of Alan Mullen and Johnno Kinahan, were reflected in the large panel who turned out on the day and the coaches had plenty of options to bring in from the bench, which augurs well for the rest of the games in the campaign.  Overall this was an excellent display from Athlone and they fully deserved their second win of the campaign.  Next up in the league is away match versus Milltownpass next Sunday, April 9th, at 12pm.

Athlone : Aoife Temple,  Shauna Moylan, Lauren O'Connor, Katie Henshaw, Caoimhe Mannion, Alannah Reynolds, Lil Stuart Trainor, Chloe Moran, Kasey O’Neill, Eimear O’Rourke, Siobhan Coleman, Brionna Geoghegan, Emma Carey, Nadia Molloy, Emily Henshaw, Niamh Byrne, Amy Joyce, Rachel Barrington, Anna Redmond, Cathy McGettigan, Emma Johnson, Ally Mahon, Kelly Brill, Amy Brill, Sorcha O’ Rourke, Eadaoine Martin, Aoife Temple, Grace Halligan
Ladies Division 4
Athlone v Goldsmith Girls (14/3/2017)
Our Junior Ladies began their league campaign with a comprehensive win over a youthful Goldsmith Girls side in Páirc Chiaráin on Tuesday last.  Congratulations to the visitors who were making their first ever appearance in adult competition, although it was a baptism of fire against an impressive Athlone team who showed the benefits of their intensive early season training regime under their new management team.  Next up for the ladies is a challenge at home to Clara at 7pm on Saturday night.

Challenge - Thursday 9th February 2017
Great win against St. Manchans (Offaly)

Training continues on Friday at 6.30pm
New players welcome
Contact Johnno Kinahan