Foxes take Feile title with flourish

by Stephen Findlater
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FOXROCK Cabinteely PRO Imelda Callaghan praised her club’s U-14 ladies footballers after they completed their third Division One Dublin Feile success in the past eight years last Sunday.
They took the competition by storm, battling through an exceptionally tough group on Saturday before seeing off local rivals Kilmacud Crokes in the semi-final after extra time.
And they followed up with an amazing comeback win on Sunday in Lawless Memorial Park in Swords, coming from 1-3 to no score to eventually win out, again after extra time, by 2-4 to 1-4 and progress to the national stage of the competition ahead of another local outfit, Ballinteer St John’s.
Speaking about the performance, Callaghan praised the entire squad for their efforts, especially given the youthful nature of the panel.
“We have ten players who will be back next year, and four of the side are still Under-12. You really need back-to-back panels to make this work, and we certainly are in great shape.
“It was a tough final. Ballinteer were terrific and they have some great athletes in their team, like the Carey twins. But we are delighted to have been able to do the job again.”
Doireann Shaffrey kicked a vital goal in extra time and she came in for praise for her “outstanding performance” all weekend, “covering every blade of grass and showcasing her intercounty talents”.
Eanna Fitzgerald cleaned up every scrap at full-back while Eve Reidy and Emma Hughes shone in midfield.
Of their U-12 contingent, Roisin McGovern provided key scores, while Jodi Egan showed her potential.
They began the campaign with a four point win over Fingallians before making hay in the second half of their second group game against Ballyboden St Enda’s in one of their best performances in the tournament.
Castleknock were also dispatched, but there were fears that playing in a four-team group in testing conditions would count against them come semi-final time.
Kilmacud had featured in a three-team pool and, when the battle went to extra-time, the Foxes showed no sign of fatigue and finished with a flourish, running up a four-point salvo to take their place in the final.
There they produced a thrilling comeback after a chastening first half to land the title, a just reward for the efforts of management team of Donnough Shaffrey, Diarmuid Byrne, Greg Clarke and Callaghan.

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