2017/18 College’s Senior C Champions – Medallion Centre Senior Shield – St. Clare’s, Ballyjamesduff
2017 Medallion Centre Senior Shield: St. Patrick’s Dungannon 2-07 – Ballyjamesduff 5-09
By Séamas McAleenan
St Clare’s Ballyjamesduff have followed Loreto Cavan into the camogie record books with a second successive win for the county in the Ulster Senior Medallion Shield final in the Peace Link Grounds in Monaghan yesterday.
Although they conceded the opening goal, a fine effort from Jessica Hamill in the 7th minute, they were the better team overall and really took control between the 35th and 40th minutes when they fired home three goals without reply from the Academy who now have the unenviable record of losing three successive finals at this level.
Siobhan O’Reilly, who collected an Ulster club medal with Crosserlough back in November, was a huge presence in midfield while recently named Schools’ All-star Shanise Fitzsimons caused the Academy rearguard plenty of problems.
Áine McNulty in defence, Reagan Fay in midfield and Sian Fitzgerald at half-forward were Academy’s best players on the day, but they will probably be disappointed that they could not reproduce the form they showed in earlier rounds.
Shanise Fitzsimons got Ballyjamesduff off the mark with an 11th minute free and they went ahead eight minutes later when Hannah Boylan fired home from close range.
The teams exchanged scores from then until the break at which point St Clare’s held a 1-5 to 1-3 lead.
However the Cavan side had a dream start to the second half with Shanise Fitzsimons pointing for the third time from open play before Sophie Slowey started the goal run in the 35th minute.
Shanise added another goal, directly from a free in the 37th minute and then Daria Kaledek made it 4-6 to 1-3 three minutes later, and really there was no way back for Dungannon from that point.
To their credit the Academy hit back over the next ten minutes with 1-2, two frees from Niamh Forker followed by a goal from Rachel O’Neill.
However Hannah Boylan snuffed out any remaining hopes that the Tyrone side had with her second goal in the 50th minute and Ballyjamesduff held out for the final whistle to greet their first ever provincial camogie title with much excitement and celebration.
St Clare’s: A Kerrigan, L Briody, E Plunkett, N Majola, S Finnegan, C Maher, S O’Reilly, K McGonnell, J Brady, E Tierney 0-1, S Fitzsimons 1-6, 1-3 frees, H Boylan 2-1, D Kaledek 1-1, S Curran, S Slowey 1-0.
Subs: H Fitzsimons for L Briody (ht), C Charters for H Fitzsimons (46), D Reilly for S Slowey (50).
St Patrick’s: A Fitzgerald, S Palmer, A McLaughlin, C Nelis, R Cunningham, A McNulty, A McAteer, R Faye 0-1, J Hamill 1-0, S Fitzgerald 0-1, N Forker 0-2 frees, AJ Kernan 0-2, N Elian, C Little, R O’Neill 1-1.
Subs : F Farley for C Little (44), S McGeary for A McAteer (51).
Referee : Philip McDonald