Tarf quartet shine in seventh heaven

by Gazette Reporter

FOUR Clontarf women starred as Dublin minors retained the Leinster championship for the seventh successive year with a comprehensive victory over Kildare.
Caoimhe O’Connor hit the net, while Heather Bolger, Sarah Fagan and Aoife Bell featured as dominant Dublin prevailed 6-13 to 2-12 in Clane on Easter Monday.
Clanna Gael Fontenoy’s Ella Thirroueiz and Parnells’ Siabh Hannigan were also part of a sensational attacking display.
The destination of the title was effectively settled by the break as Dublin went into the changing rooms with a 5-8 to 1-6 lead, with four of those goals coming between the 11th and 16th minutes.
Dublin showed just why they have dominated at age-grade level in recent years with a devastating attacking performance that left their neighbours scrambling for answers.
The Lilywhites had chances in the early stages but failed to make them count. The Girls in Blue were ruthless, by contrast, as shown by the scoring blitz that effectively settled the tie.
The Dubs led by 0-3 to 0-2 after ten minutes, and a tightly-contested affair looked to be on the cards until Sheehan took the game by the scruff of the neck with a clinical forward display.
St John’s clubwoman Sheehan scored her first goal in the 11th minute and followed it up with her second two minutes later.
Caoimhe O’Connor added a third goal in the 14th minute before Sheehan completed a five-minute hat trick to put the champions in firm control.
The Ballinteer player added her fourth goal, and Dublin’s fifth, in the 27th minute to cap of a dazzling first-half display as her team took an unassailable 14-point lead into the break.
Dublin refused to take their foot off the gas in the second half and landed two quick points thanks to a fine solo effort from Cuala’s Eimear Loughlin and one from O’Connor.
There was time for Naomh Olaf’s Ciara O’Sullivan to add goal number six 15 minutes into the second half.
The substitute buried the rebound after Sheehan’s initial effort had been well saved by Lilywhites goalkeeper Emily McGrory.
Fingallians’ Dearbhla Snow and St Sylvesters’ Danielle Lawless were also impressive as they each notched 0-3 tallies.
Kildare belatedly struck back, with substitute and Irish soccer international Lauren Kelly scoring 1-4 in the second half including a penalty for a technical foul in the small square.
The damage had been done in that blistering first half, however, and Dublin easily held to on to seal their ninth championship of the last ten and seventh in a row.
The Leinster champions will have time to reflect on a job well done with a date against the yet-to-be-determined winners of the Connacht minor championship on either July 15 or 16.

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