By DARAGH SMALL
Kilkerrin/Clonberne manager Kevin Reidy praised the influence of Olivia Divilly for the reigning Connacht champions as they take aim at another provincial crown.
Divilly, who is an All-Star nominee after she helped guide Galway to an All-Ireland final this year, spent recent weeks competing in an AFL trial in Australia, but flew home to score 0-5 in Kilkerrin/Clonberne’s 4-9 to 2-4 victory over Carnacon.
The loss of home advantage due to a deluge of rain shortly before throw-in didn’t affect the champions and goals from Annette Clarke, Lynsey Noone, Louise Ward and Ailish Morrissey sealed the win.
“There aren’t enough words to describe Olivia,” said Reidy. “She is playing outstanding football for us. She scored five points there today and in the county semi-final and final she was brilliant.
“She is playing outstanding football for us but she is part of a team there. They all just work so hard for each other. They are all best friends.”
Carnacon had claimed their 20th Mayo SFC title in-a-row last week, but even the return of Cora Staunton wasn’t enough in the Connacht semi-final. By the time she entered the fray, her side trailed by 0-3 to 0-0.
Divilly scored three early frees but Carnacon burst into life following Staunton’s introduction in the 15th minute. She set up Erina Flannery for a goal five minutes later and Carnacon went in front with Staunton’s first point.
The game swung back in Kilkerrin/Clonberne’s favour when Annette Clarke finished a goal and after that Carnacon would never get back on terms.
The Galway champions gained control when Lynsey Noone scored her side’s second goal and Kilkerrin/Clonberne took a 2-5 to 1-2 half-time lead.
Despite Aoife Brennan’s consolation, Louise Ward and Morrissey both found the net in the second-half as Kilkerrin/Clonberne advanced to take on Roscommon champions Kilbride in the provincial decider.
Meanwhile, the Leinster SFC club final will be a repeat of the 2018 decider after champions Foxrock-Cabinteely and Sarsfields Mountmellick came through their respective semi-finals yesterday.
Foxrock-Cabinteely ran out 4-13 to 0-7 winners against Kildare champions Confey, with a goal straight after half time and their fourth ten minutes from time denting any hopes of a Confey comeback.
It was a lot closer in the second semi-final, and goals from Amy Loughman and Laura Marie Maher helped the Laois winners carve out a 2-10 to 2-6 win against Simonstown. With Kelsey Nesbitt on song after the break Simonstown closed to within a point at one stage, but Sarsfields held on to win.
In Ulster, Donegal’s Termon and Monaghan club Donaghmoyne will compete in the senior club final. Geraldine McLaughlin was in form for Termon once again and her first-half goal saw them recover from a slow start, and despite Coleen McQuaid’s goal there was no way back for St Macartan’s.
Down champions Bredagh proved very tough opponents for Donaghmoyne, but with a home crowd roaring them on, Amanda Casey’s brilliantly worked goal finally wrapped up a 3-11 to 2-6 win for Donaghmoyne.
Connacht SFC Club Semi-Final
Kilkerrin/Clonberne (Galway) 4-9 Carnacon (Mayo) 2-4
Leinster SFC Club Semi-Final
Foxrock-Cabinteely (Dublin) 4-13 Confey (Kildare) 0-7
Sarsfields Mountmellick (Laois) 2-10 Simonstown (Meath) 2-6
Ulster SFC Club Semi-Finals
Termon (Donegal) 1-9 St Macartan’s (Tyrone) 2-5
Donaghmoyne (Monaghan) 3-11 Bredagh (Down) 2-6Tweet