Boden girls contested 3 Finals on Sunday – coming away with 2 trophies and 1 gallant defeat.
U-15D Championship Final – Faughs – 23/10/16
BBSE 3 – 4 Faughs 2 – 1
On Sunday afternoon our U-15’s took on Faughs in the championship final, in Russell Park, Blanchardstown. With our u-13B’s battling hosts Brigids on the pitch beside us at the same time, supporters were spoiled for choice as our match commenced. The majority of this team had battled bravely when losing to a strong St. John’s team in an under 16 shield final two short weeks ago, and many were on the side unlucky not to win their Féile final in 2015. Somehow this trip seemed different – there was a feeling that whatever superhuman effort might be needed these lassies were not leaving the Navan Road without the Cup.
We had qualified in style, topping our group, but we were expecting a tough test from our Tymon neighbours. The early signs were good – Elaine struck the bar early on, and Deirdre was a threat every time the ball was in and around their goal. An opening point settled the nerves. A second point quickly followed before a disallowed goal. Two points up and as they say it was ‘Boden all day long!’
Faugh’s pressure was significant however, and they fielded a side as determined as ours – their movement down the left wing was smooth and swift. Lauren Gray covered and harried in one corner and Aoife Leavy covered the ground repeatedly to come across and help out. The back looked secure but suddenly a neat Faugh’s move ended with the ball nestling in our net. A point down having been two up – surely not another hard-luck day on the cards.
That was never going to happen and we made the breakthrough our play deserved with a goal, and followed up with two sweet points from Ciara Woodcock from tight angles – Ciara quite clearly loving the freedom of corner forward.
We were shading the exchanges but scores were really hard to come by. Out the field, the forceful runs of Blathnaid and Chloe Murphy were punching holes in the Faugh’s rear-guard. These two have run marathons all season – and did so again on Sunday. At the back Ciara Duffy, flanked by Cathy and Hannah formed an impenetrable barrier that proved Faughs undoing time and again – these three have become a close working unit with the combined resistance of the Great Wall of China, and with Ciara holding the centre Hannah and Cathy’s pushed forward to great effect.
In the other corner Rachael was working tirelessly, dealing with a corner back who if let loose would have run wild and done damage – but she was never let. In midfield Muireann and Elaine held sway. Both were marking strong Faugh’s midfielders intent on playing a running game, and both held firm in their individual contests – on a heavy October pitch this is hard, tiring and often unseen work – but over the hour these two players were crucial.
Approaching half time, the match was held up for a number of minutes due to a serious hand injury to Deirdre, but our girls maintained their concentration on the resumption and resolved at half time to do it for Deirdre!
Lucy came on in the attack and Ciara McCullough replaced Deirdre at full forward, and both posed a significant threat. As well as threatening in front of goal the front three repeatedly stopped the ball from coming out easily – continuing from where Rachel had done in the first half.
The second half continued in a similar vein to the first, but with the hill in their favour Faughs began to exert significantly more pressure. Try as they might they could not overhaul the lead that Boden had built up.
Caoimhe in goal was not overly tested in the second half, having made two really vital stages in the first half – but anything she had to deal with she did very well and her control from the puck outs was re-assuring throughout – a calm head as usual. Shauna has been outstanding all season and was again on Sunday – the family DNA seems to have a catching skill built in – that or Yvonne starts training them from the cot – either way the ball seemed to find Shauna’s hand effortlessly all season – it’s a joy to see such skill.
In the closing stages, Robyn really came into her own, falling back to help an embattled defence, grabbing balls and lifting the siege by driving the ball half the length of the pitch time and again. It was a display that deservedly earned Robyn the award of Player of the Game.
In the final quarter Rena and Zara came on and added fresh impetus and fresh legs when it was badly needed. Chloe Curran, Megan, Mia, Ciara Dowling and Jemma all played crucial roles in ensuring that this team reached the final – the five sub rule meant that we couldn’t run them all – just as well for Faugh’s !!! The same could be said for Laura and Beth who were unavailable for the final.
Although injured for the closing stages of the championship, Vice-captain Emily Sharkey’s commitment to the cause never wavered, and she regularly attended training and matches. It was no surprise to see her supporting the girls in the final – although the mentors bit was clearly not to her usual fashion standards, and it was also great to see that Beth was able to come out and cheer the girls on.
At the final whistle we still held a six point lead. There was a massive outpouring of pure joy from players and supporters alike, as the cup was presented to Captain Ciara Duffy.
However, the injury to Deirdre was foremost in everyone’s mind. The good news is that as we go to press she is out of hospital and is recovering. James and Anne asked that we pass on a huge Thank You to all those who helped out when she was injured & they also asked us to give a big shout out to all in Crumlin Hospital – they were superb as always. Everyone wishes her a speedy recovery and can’t wait to see her back on the field swinging a hurley as only Deirdre can.
A word for Faugh’s – it’s never easy to lose a final – they were very sporting throughout, and most generous after the game, they also sent several messages wishing D well. They are a class outfit and silverware will come the way of this team before long. We wish them well.
2016 Champions – Not Bad! And all the sweeter for the wait …….
Robyn Flynn receives Player of the Match award
U-13 A Championship Final – Judes – 23/10/16
BBSE 4 – 4 St. Judes 1 – 7
Our U-13A’s faced neighbours St. Judes in the county championship final on Sunday morning in O’Toole Park. Having accounted for our girls with something to spare in the group stages, Judes entered the contest as favourites, but our girls were determined to give of their best.
What transpired was a game of massive intensity and skill that had everyone engrossed from the first throw-in until the final whistle. It culminated with Boden getting to put its name on this championship trophy for the first time in its history.
Conditions were ideal as we defended the road goal in the first half.
Exchanges were tight early on, with both sides competing for every ball as if their lives depended on it. We won a free which sailed just wide, before finally full forward Katie got possession and headed straight for goal. She was not to be denied and the ball was in the back of the net. Jennifer then slotted a free, before Judes opened their account with a point, and then repeated the act with a further point. Julie then switched to full forward and the move paid dividends as she netted from close range, Jennifer then found the range again from a free, and then followed up with a goal. The first half scoring was completed by a point from a “45” for Judes.
Things were just as tight in the second half. Jennifer opened the scoring with a point, but Judes were not lying down and replied with two points of their own. A goal from a Jennifer free settled some nerves, and she followed up with a point, to open up a healthy 11 point lead. However, Judes showed immense character and never gave up. Traffic at this stage was all in one direction towards our goal, but our backs stood up to the challenge, as our midfielders and forwards were forced back to help to “man the barricades”.
The pressure had to tell and Judes converted two frees, before finally got the goal their efforts deserved in the dying minutes. However, our girls shut up shop at that stage and saw out the remainder of the match, much to the delight of the large Boden support on the bank.
The cheers could be heard in Ballyboden as captain Julie lifted the cup, and followed up with a speech that indicated that a career in politics may yet beckon for her.
Jennifer took the player of the match award – a fitting tribute, not just to her performance in this final, but also to a string of starring performances that helped this team reach this final.
This was an absolute panel effort, with all 18 players contributing handsomely.
Lucy in goal never put a foot wrong, and made light of her early morning dash from Limerick, with her dad Ian doing a good impression of a champion rally driver.
In front of Lucy, the full back line was immense. Yvonne had the game of her life, while on each side of her, Sorcha and Sadie were the rocks on which many a Judes attach floundered.
Clodagh Delaney held the centre superbly while on the right wing, Sarah chose this day to give her top performance – even suffering to save one goal-bound shot with her helmet. On the left, Michaela displayed her wide range of skills, including keeping a tight rein on Jude’s most lethal forward.
In mid field, Erin and Mia held sway, with huge skill levels and massive work rate. They defended brilliantly throughout, as well as being the launch pads for a series of vital attacks. The centre spine of the attack, Katie and Julie, worked tirelessly and were a threat throughout.
On the wings Jennifer and Clodagh Reid worked brilliantly and gave their markers plenty of headaches, while in the corners Ella and Alana never gave an inch and were a thorn in Jude’s side throughout.
The contributions of Auveen, Caoimhe and Leah were all crucial when they entered the fray. Each provided fresh legs and energy at a time when the team needed exactly that.
A great achievement for this group of girls who have worked hard all year, but never forgot the art of enjoying themselves at training.
“CHAMPIONS 2016” has a nice ring to it!!!!!!
U-13D Championship Final – Brigids – 23/10/16
BBSE U13B 2 – 0 Brigids 3 – 3
At 1.00pm our final was on in Tom Russell Park, St Brigid’s GAA Club.
Just hearing about the As winning over St Jude’s in O’Toole Park made us really determined to do it and win against St Brigid’s.
They had other ideas and didn’t make it easy for us especially when they scored their first goal of the game in less than 10 minutes after the start. Ballyboden rallied and for the remainder of the half held St Brigids scoreless despite an onslaught of attacks. Ballyboden had a number of attacks and were hunted down in numbers by St Brigids but in the final move of the half Ballyboden worked the ball up the pitch and from close range Ciara Kelleher rifled a ball to the ball into the back of the net leaving the score a goal apiece at half time.
The Ballyboden backs were brilliant in this first half blocking a few shots on the Brigid’s goal, hooking and blocking if their life depended on it.
At the start of the 2nd half the tempo raised higher and the exchanges were fierce, St Brigid’s were awarded a free which they converted leaving them a point up. With the next puck out we got the sliotar down to Alice Rudden who solo’d through and hit a rocket that the goalie blocked and Shauna Feely followed up to slot home a dramatic goal which brought a great cheer from all of the Ballyboden supporters at the match and the rivalry was high! Score 1-1 to 2-0 Ballyboden in the lead.
The exchanges continued hard and fast and in a scramble in front of goal St Brigid’s were awarded a penalty which was very harsh on the Ballyboden girls as the match was played in a good spirit. St Brigids buried the ball in our goal. This proved to be a turning point and all the momentum swung back in favour of St Brigids. However Ballyboden kept trying but St Brigids never ever gave up trying to score and had tagged on 2 more points nearing the finish leading by 3 points. A late late goal flattered the scoreline leaving the final score of St Brigids 3-3 to Ballyboden’s 2-0.
Our captain Marina Fitzsimons said some nice words and congratulated St Brigids on their win.
Even though we lost, it was a great experience to reach the county final and come second place. We enjoyed the day.