Ireland U15 Girls capture Bob Docherty Cup

Ireland U15 Girls capture Bob Docherty Cup

Bob Docherty Girls International U15 Cup Republic of Ireland U15            1-0     Scotland U15Gemma McGuinness 50 The Republic of Ireland U15 Schools team captured the Bob Docherty Cup today (15 April) at the expense of current holders and host nation Scotland.  A gruelling three-day match series saw Ireland win all three competitive games in determined fashion.  The final game of the tournament saw the Irish up against their toughest test yet with favourites Scotland featuring in an early morning kick off. It was a game played at a very high standard but neither side took their chances. The solitary goal of the game came courtesy of Moville Community College student Gemma McGuinness deep into the second half.Thursday's encounter was a nervous contest for the Irish knowing that only a win would secure the title with Scotland sharing the leader board on level points. Scotland won both their fixtures against Wales (2-0) and Northern Ireland (2-1) and it was an epic battle for the prestigious title.Both sides had plenty of opportunities to register a score but good goalkeeping from Nicole Cranny denied the Scots on several occasions.Drogheda's Shauna Newman returned to the squad for the final game after recovering from an injury en-route to the tournament. She was instrumental in keeping the Scottish at bay and led from the back as Ireland advanced on goal. Missed opportunities came from the boot of Katie McCabe, Amber Barrett and Sarah Rowe.The Scots were unfortunate not to equalise in the dying minutes of the game as a strike from distance struck the post much to the relief of the travelling Irish supporters.On Wednesday, Ireland began their 3-0 win over Wales with a goal from Katie McCabe after just 3 minutes. This was followed ten minutes later by a cracking strike from Longford's Aisling Reynolds followed by a third by another Mean Scoil Mhuire student, Aoife Darcy, 15 minutes from time.  Michael Gallagher had the perfect start to his campaign when the team produced a magnificent performance against the North on Tuesday afternoon/ The girls were quick out of the blocks and Katie McCabe slotted home the opener from a clever cross from Sarah Rowe in just the second minute of the game. McCabe and Rowe were instrumental in an excellent team performance and caused difficulties for the Northern Ireland defence.  After ten minutes, McCabe broke from halfway and calmly rounded the keeper to score her second. The Irish girls were well on top at this stage and pressed home their advantage when Aisling Reynolds volleyed home from 20 yards on 15 minutes. It was a superb strike from a player who performed solidly in midfield throughout the game. Northern Ireland came back into the game gradually and a mix up at the back allowed Moya Feehan to pull one back after 18 minutes. The second half was a more even affair characterised by the work rate of the Irish girls.  The back-four performed solidly and the centre of midfield allowed McCabe and Rowe to torment the North full backs. Michelle Farrell and Gemma McGuinness, assisted by Amber Barrett, toiled tirelessly up front. The game was effectively wrapped up on 50 minutes when McCabe burst into the box and was taken down. She confidently scored the penalty herself to complete her hat trick. The management team of Michael Gallagher (St. Joseph's College, Athlone), Margaret Mulhall (Moville Community College), Dave Collins (Alexandra College, Dublin) and Ian Carry (FAI) are to be congratulated on a wonderful achievement for Schools football.  This is Ireland's fifth title in eight years with Ireland remaining unbeaten since 2007. Roscommon native Gallagher said of the triumph: "The girls were tremendous over the course of the tournament. We were very lucky to have such a talented panel of players who all featured in the three fixtures. We're so proud of their achievements here today. We knew it would be difficult to travel to Scotland with the hosts winning the tournament in Belfast last year but we stood up and were counted when needed." Ireland last won the Tournament in Galway in 2008 and were unfortunate with a runners-up spot last year in Belfast. The panel were very young last season which saw five players return this season. The experience gained from last year was evident as the team delivered confident performances to win all three fixtures. Despite losing Schools International Clare Shine to Noel King's U17 squad, the team remained positive and did themselves proud.  Assistant Manager Margaret Mulhall said: "It was a major disappoint to lose one of our International stars but the management were convinced of the girls' ability to do well and they certainly did that this week. The victorious Irish will play Scotland in an International friendly next week to conclude their season's campaign.  Ireland played the Scots away last May and lost 3-0 in that friendly. They will be hoping that their current run of form be maintained when they kick-off in Curragh Athletic, Killygordon on Sunday, 25 April (KO 12 noon) REPUBLIC OF IRELAND U15: Nicole Cranny (Heywood Community School), Aine Bennett (Eureka Secondary School, Kells), Chloe Mustaki (St. Kilian's Deutsche Schule), Emily Cahill (Newpark Comprehensive School), Shauna Newman (St Oliver's Community College), Carys Johnson (Colaiste Muire, Buttevant), Sarah Rowe (St. Mary's Secondary School, Ballina), Aisling Reynolds (Mean Scoil Mhuire, Longford), Niamh Kelly (St Louis Community College), Michelle Farrell (Moyne Community School), Katie McCabe (St. Paul's Secondary School, Greenhills), Ciara O'Connell (Mount Mercy College), Keara Cormican (Presentation College, Athenry), Gemma McGuinness (Moville Community College), Aoife Darcy (Mean Scoil Mhuire), Richelle Timothy (Castlerea Community School), Amber Barrett (Loreto Community School, Milford), Amy O'Connor (St. Vincent's Secondary School, Cork)MANAGEMENT TEAM: Manager: Michael Gallagher, St. Joseph's College, Summerhill, Athlone, Assistant Manager: Margaret Mulhall, Moville Community School, Coach: Dave Collins, Alexandra College, Dublin, GK Coach: Ian Carry, FAI Physio: David Kieran, Team Doctor: Dr. Natalia BratuRESULTS:Tuesday, 13 April (Lochinch Grounds, Pollock Country Park) KO 3pmRepublic of Ireland 4-1 Northern IrelandScotland 2-0 WalesWednesday, 14 April (Lochinch Grounds, Pollock Country Park) KO 3pmRepublic of Ireland 3-0 WalesScotland 2-1 Northern IrelandThursday, 15 April (Glasgow University, Garscube Sports Complex) KO 10.30amNorthern Ireland 2-1 Wales, Republic of Ireland 1-0 Scotland
15th Apr 2010