St Paul’s 2-9 Ballyroan 1-8
Laois Ladies MFC ‘A’ Final
A month after leading St Paul’s to Laois Junior glory, Emma Lawlor was back at her very best today as she helped the Minors to championship success.
She scored 2-6 of her sides’ total in a victory over Ballyroan that caps a remarkable year for her and her club.
The Ballyroan girls tried very hard as Kate Whelan lead the line for them with six points while Arianna Mezapelle and Ellen O’Donoghue got through a savage amount of work but it wasn’t enough.
St Paul’s played with the breeze in the first half but it was Ballyroan who opened the scoring through Kate Whelan.
Ballyroan were attempting to emulate the success of their male compatriots who won the MFC championship after a replay with Portarlington last weekend but St Paul’s got on top by the fifth minute thanks to two points from Emma Lawlor.
Rebecca Balfe added another point for St Paul’s and they really should have been further ahead as they kicked five wides in this period.
Kate Whelan hit back for Ballyroan with her second free and although Mary Kate Moore got St Paul’s fourth, the gap was back to one after 20 minutes thanks to Rachel Fitzgerald for Ballyroan.
But St Paul’s finished the half well to take a three point lead by half time.
Kate Whelan hit two more frees for Ballyroan but Emma Lawlor went on one of her trademark runs which cut the defence apart and created space for her to plant the ball in the net.
This left St Paul’s with a 1-4 to 0-5 lead at half time.
Kate Whelan cut the deficit on the resumption of play with her fifth free of the afternoon but the excellent Lawlor hit back straight away.
But Ballyroan took the lead after 35 minutes with the game’s second goal. Rachel Fitzgerald caught a sublime pass from Emily Mulhall to rifle the ball into the corner.
Emma Lawlor levelled matters with another free and from the resulting kick-out, she won the game again before racing forward and planting the ball into the net for the second time.
And Lawlor took her tally to 2-5 as we entered the final quarter of the game to put St Paul’s four ahead.
The game remained without a score for the next ten minutes as St Paul’s dominated possession with the excellent Gillian Keenan controlling things for them.
But Kate Whelan’s point with five minutes to play set us up for a grandstand finish.
Rebecca Balfe’s second point of the game gave St Paul’s some breathing space but Ellen O’Donoghue’s effort from the right wing for Ballyroan left three between them again as we entered injury time.
However, the second goal that Ballyroan needed never arrived and the excellent Lawlor made the game safe with a free from the final kick of the match.
SCORERS – ST PAUL’S: Emma Lawlor 2-6 (three frees), Rebecca Balfe 0-2, Mary Kate Moore 0-1 BALLYROAN: Kate Whelan 0-6 (five frees), Rachel Fitzgerald 1-1, Ellen O’Donoghue 0-1
ST PAUL’S: Sinead O’Rourke; Laura Kirwan, Zoe Keegan, Emily Gleeson; Aoife Langford, Niamh Crowley, Molly McCormack; Rebecca Balfe, Emma Lawlor; Kerrie Costello, Gillian Keenan, Ciara Langford; Mary Kate Moore, Isabelle O’Toole, Ciara Crowley. Subs: Holly Langford for C Crowley (15m), Leah Doyle for McCormack (45m), Aoibheann Maher for Costello (55m)
BALLYROAN: Thanh Phelan; Emma Cass, Caoimhe Murphy, Amy Fitzpatrick; Sarah McMahon, Arrianna Mezapelle, Ellen Donoghue; Leah Kelly, Rachel Fitzpatrick; Lucia Mezzapelle, Emily Mulhall, Kate Whelan; Panashe Karigumba, Caoimhe Delaney, Isabelle McWey. Subs: Fionola Kehoe for L Mezzapelle (40m)
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