Cork City 1 Peamount United 2
CORK City were narrowly beaten in the final of the EA Sports Women’s U17 National League of Ireland Cup as Peamount United claimed the silverware following their 2-1 triumph at the Athlone Town Stadium.
Heidi Mackin’s stunning free-kick in injury time proved to be just a consolation as goals earlier in the second-half from Michelle Doonan and substitute Jess Fitzgerald secured Peamount the trophy.
City, who won the league at this venue last year, had the first shot in anger inside the opening minutes but Orlaith Deasy fired harmlessly wide of the near post.
Peamount, who were looking to bounce back having lost the league title to Treaty United recently, soon grabbed control of proceedings as Sarah Healy’s side struggled to keep possession, although at times that was due to the pressing of their rivals.
Defender Jill Giles headed just wide from a corner before Tara O’Hanlon sent a long-range effort over the bar midway through the first half as the Peas failed to create a genuine goal-scoring opportunity despite their dominance.
City’s best chance fell to Grace Fitzpatrick-Ryan in the 37th minute but after she was released in the box by a superb through ball from Ellie O’Brien, the attacker’s goalbound effort was somehow blocked by the recovering defence.
The Dublin club almost edged in front shortly before the half-time break as substitute Kelly cleverly hooked Michelle Doonan’s cross past the goalkeeper but crucially past the near post too from a tight angle.
But after an even start to the second period, Peamount took the lead with 52 minutes on the clock through Doonan, who collected Michelle Koujou’s superb long ball over the top before sliding it past the keeper.
The Rebel Army battled until the very end and after Ava Lotty saw a short cleared off the line from a corner and a header hit the bar from a set-piece, they pulled a goal back when Heidi Mackin’s long free sailed into the roof of the net.
But unfortunately for City, it wasn’t enough to force extra time as Jess Fitzgerald had earlier rolled the ball into the far bottom left corner to secure Peamount the cup.