Antrim Minors edge out Donegal to reach Ulster Semi Final
11th April 2018
Played on St Endas pitch in good conditions for football, Donegal got into their groove that little bit quicker than Antrim. They took a lead of 4 points to 1 before Antrim finally got to grips with the speed of the game. Antrim had to make a forced change with Cliodhna Kane replacing Orla Corr who hurt her hamstring.
Orlaith Prenter was instrumental in kickstarting Antrim forwards by scoring some lovely scores whilst Ciara Brown was a real driving force from midfield linking well with Lara Dahunsi. Aoibhinn Enright was working tirelessly linking our defence and attack throughout the half. There were some lovely scores from Aoife Taggart, Caitlin Taggart and Nicole Jones to finish off the Antrim scoring. All the while Donegal were pushing at the door to claw back scores but were repelled by some excellent defending from Antrim. Donegal were unlucky not to have a goal as the ref blew for a penalty. The subsequent penalty was brilliantly saved by Ciara Larkin who was superb throughout in goal. The refereee blew the half time whistle with Antrim taking a 0-8 to 0-6 lead into the interval.
Antrim came out in the 2nd half in a different manner than the 1st and started to cause Donegal a lot more problems going forward. A well workedgoal by Aoife Taggart put a bit of breathing space between the teams. Driven on by Maeve Blaney, Niamh Webb and Emma Louise McAreavey in the half back line, Antrim slowly continued to assert their authority on the game with another goal from Orlaith Prenter stretching the lead to 9 points. Donegal just kept in the contest by continuing to press when Antrim had a girl sin binned with 6 mins to go. Donegal saw their opportunity and attacked with fervour, scoring a goal and a point to bring it back to 5 points. A superb catch from Nicole Jones and quick pass in allowed Caitlin Taggart to finish off another goal to stretch the lead again. Donegal never gave up and scored another goal to reduce the lead to 5 with only a few minutes to go. Some resolute last ditchdefending from the Antrim full back line of Ciara Madden, Cliodhna Kane and Eimear Matthews kept the Donegal team in check, as they were ably assisted by Maria Hanna who burst forward at every opportunity. In the dying seconds Antrim had a superb goal line clearance from Ciara Larkin before the ref blew for full time and Antrim came away with the result they deserved.