Kepak Senior Championship Group 2 Round 3
Seneschalstown 3-13 Donaghmore/Ashbourne 2-08
Seneschalstown continued their fine form in this year’s Kepak Senior Championship when accounting for Donaghmore/Ashbourne in Ashbourne on Saturday evening. The win maintains their 100% and ensures they finish the group campaign with three wins from three outings. This victory was certainly less dramatic than their wins over Oldcastle and Navan O’Mahony’s but over the 60 minutes Seneschalstown played some excellent football and leaves them in good shape heading into their final four meeting with either Oldcastle or St. Peter’s Dunboyne.
On what was almost a winters evening weather wise in comparison with the Senior Mens game seven days previous, the home side were first to score when pointing inside the opening minute. There was then a delay when Sorcha Gough was treated for a knee injury and was forced to depart the fray. When the game resumed Kellie Stafford drew the sides level but Donaghmore enjoyed a strong five minutes when they plundered 1-01 for themselves to move four points ahead.
Stacey Grimes kicked her first score off the evening in the 16th minute from play, and after the Moores registered another point Seneschalstown received a timely fillip
After Seneschalstown worked a move up front, Orla Finnegan got in behind the defence to finish to the net and really get the Yellow Furze girls up and running. From the resultant kick-out Seneschalstown punished the home side for their failure to exit and Finnegan popped over the leveller.
The sides shared four points in as many minutes in the run up to half-time. Grimes accounted for both of those Seneschalstown points, one being a free and the other from play after working a move from a quick free.
Seneschalstown looked like they would head into the changing rooms ahead when Kellie Stafford powered her way through the defence to point but they were rocked when Ashbourne got their second goal to move two ahead again. Tara Traynor ensured the gap was only one point at the break when her shot crept over the bar with the aid of the keeper’s fingertips in the final play of the half.
Despite being behind at the break, you got the feeling that once Seneschalstown went ahead they would have the scoring ability to pull away.
Orla Finnegan equalised three minutes in the new half after finding herself in space in front of goal and when another press on the Ashbourne kickout was successful, Grimes was able to put Seneschalstown in front for the first time in the game.
There was a ten minute spell without a score but both keepers were called into action. Louise Coyle made two big saves during this period to keep Seneschalstown in front. An Ashbourne point broke the scoring duck to level the game, but once Róisín Commons fired over to restore the lead Seneschalstown were never headed again.
With nine minutes left Amy Gilsenan got on the scoresheet from centre back for the second game in a row and a minute later Grimes converted a tricky free from the right side of the pitch. Moments later, the game was put to bed.
Stacey Grimes managed to find herself in acres of space in the full-forward line and when she was picked out she carried the ball towards goal. Despite the best efforts of a retreating defender Grimes stepped inside her and placed the ball to the bottom right corner to move Seneschalstown six ahead with seven minutes to go.
Donaghnore reduced the deficit to four points with two in a row but it was all in vain, especially when Orla Finnegan somewhat fortuitously bagged the third goal. Finnegans miss-hit point attempt escaped the grasp of the goalkeeper and ending up in the net.
Deep into injury time Grimes added on one last free and the referee blew for full-time before the kick-out was taken.
Another satisfactory evening for Seneschalstown who will now plan for another semi-final and look to reach their second final in three years having done so in 2021. Fixture details will be posted as soon as we have them.
Seneschalstown: Louise Coyle, Tiana Kyle, Natasha Mullen Leanne Clarke, Leah Ryan, Amy Gilsenan (0-01), Caragh Monaghan, Kiah Geraghty, Seánaidh Hickey, Kellie Stafford (0-02), Sorcha Gough, Tara Traynor (0-01), Stacey Grimes (1-06, 3fs), Róisín Commons (0-01), Anna Wogan.
Sub: Orla Finnegan (2-02), Meadhbh Hickey