Sunday, June 28, 2009

Irish underage round-up: Day three

Ireland U-18 Girls 4 (Deirdre Duke 2, Katie Codyre, Gillian Pinder) Scotland 0
Ireland go into next week's Europeans off the back of a resounding 4-0 triumph over Scotland at Belfield to complete their three-game series with two wins and a draw.

Deirdre Duke (pictured, left) opened the scoring with a fine reverse in the 20th minute before Hermes club-mate Gillian Pinder made it 2-0 with 20 minutes remaining; once again on the reverse.

Katie Codyre profited from Anna-Mae Morton's excellent through ball to beat the Scottish goalkeeper one-on-one before Duke completed the rout in the 62nd minute when Ali Meeke's cross was not cut out by the Scottish defence.

Ireland U-18 Boys 4 (Shane O'Donghue 2, Andrew Skekleton, Stuart Loughrey) Scotland 3
Ireland gave Scotland a dose of their own medicine as they were the beneficiaries of a late, late goal to take victory in Edinburgh. Shane O'Donoghue fired in a last minute corner to edge the tie. Earlier, Ireland had led 2-0 before falling behind 3-2.

O'Donoghue and Shekleton again were on target to create the 2-0 advantage but Scotland stormed back with a drag-flick just before half-time as the game followed an identikit scoing pattern to the first game before the break.

A bullet drag-flick and a tap-in at the back post, though, turned the game on its head in the second half. Ireland reorganised, though, with Stu Loughrey roofing a neatly worked corner routine before an improvised reverse from Glenanne hitman O'Donoghue sealed the win in the dying monents.

Ireland U-16 Girls 1 (Joanne Orr) England 0
The U-16 completed their three-match series on a high another encouraging performance, continuing their upward ascent all weekend, taking a well deserved win.

Rebecca Barry went closest in the first half, her raised shot saved off the line in the 16th minute by a covering defender but Joanne Orr got the crucial goal 12 minutes into the second half to give Una McCarthy's side a share of the series - both sides adding a win to Saturday's draw while scoring four goals each.

Ireland U-16 Boys 2 (Nick Burns 2) England 1
Paul Cooke's charges completed a fine day for Ireland's underage sides, winning in style against a technically proficient English outfit with Midleton's Nick Burns (pictured) on target twice.

Ireland started in brilliant fashion, creating several clear-cut chances in the opening quarter, Josh Moffett's reverse going closest. Mark Ingram pulled off a fine save from a rare English break-out but the hosts deservedly took the lead when Tom Samuel nicked the ball and played through for Burns to out-strip the defence and roll in a reverse at the near post.

A second was disallowed soon after as Moffett's cross was deemed dangerous, though Burns acrobatic deflection was a sight to behold. 2-0 was achieved, though, when Darren Sweetnam's close-control earned Ireland their only corner of the game and Burns duly netted a high drag-flick. England pulled one back with three minutes to go.

* For more of Adrian Boehm's photos from Ireland U-18 girls, click here while photos of the Ireland U-16 boy's game are here

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