St. Kilian’s launched their senior girls league campaign with a plum home fixture vs St. Columba’s on Thursday, October 14th, 2022 with a new-look team for 2022/23, led by Class 11 captain Alana Brennan.
With support from classes 10 & 9 the girls got off to a solid start, pressing St. Columba’s deep into their own quarter for all of the opening 15 minutes. Alannah McCoole and Ella Cullivan unlucky not to break the goal line more than once but alas that opening goal just eluded us.
Coming out for quarter 2 it seemed St. Columba’s were fired up after surviving the first quarter onslaught and the second period of play was a much tighter affair. Captain Alana distributing well and the defensive unit of Hayley Billings, Maite Jacoby and Emily McElwain working well together and repelling Columbas’ attacks with relative ease – until disaster struck and a solitary breakaway opportunity handed the visitors an unlikely goal to take the narrowest lead into the half-time break.
The girls were rightly annoyed and came out for the 3rd quarter on fire but again found the visiting keeper in fine form and the industry around the circle from Ella Fahey, Anja MacKenzie, and Robyn McTiernan went unrewarded. After such a huge work rate from the girls the team fitness started to slip a little, and with just two subs on this occasion it meant everyone was working into the red. Eventually that solid midfield-defence axis cracked and allowed St. Columba’s in for a super goal from open play – to head into the Q3 break 2-0 and with all the work on the home side to glean anything from the tie.
Quarter 4 started brightly however and both Aifric Doherty and Sophie McElwain went close, and Grace Curtin had some lovely touches inside the circle – forcing the keeper into some quality clearances. Still the goal would not come despite a barrage of strong carries from Anja MacKenzie and Ella Cullivan, and strikes from Alannah McCoole at the top of the circle just missing Robyn McTiernan at the post for that elusive tap-in. At the death St. Columba’s sealed the St. Kilian’s fate with a late (and controversial) penalty corner which was superbly executed, giving K’s keeper Maria Carthy no chance.
Just like a school mock exam, the seconds ticked agonisingly away to put the game beyond reach. Final score 0-3 which flattered St. Columba’s a little – but our thanks to the visitors for a clean and friendly game and we look forward to a return visit later in the season.
K’s Player(s) of the match: Maite Jacoby & Ella Cullivan. Well done girls!