It was a day of mixed fortunes for the Donegal u14 girls in Brookeborough on Sunday with a victory in the first game against hosts Fermanagh and a defeat in the second game against a very strong Monaghan team.
Donegal started slowly against Fermanagh and found themselves trailing 1-6 to 0-1 after 10 minutes but a few quick changes stopped the rot and drove Donegal up the field.
Ellie Long finished off a great team move with a shot to the top corner.
The Donegal girls really settled after this and started passing the ball, running off the shoulder better.
Another 1-1 from Ellie Long and 1-01 from Caitlin Doherty had Donegal in front by the interval.
An early second half goal from Fermanagh put them right back in the game and Donegal had to dig deep.
The response was immediate a great team move from back to front ended up with Annie McGroddy beating two defenders before sliding the ball past the Fermanagh keeper.
The move and score of the game came next when Aoibhin Randles blocked down a Fermanagh shot and then recovered the ball. A quick 1-2 with Aideen Friel then another with Bronagh Butler and one more with Annie McGroddy, she then struck the ball over the bar of the outside of her foot from out wide on the right.
Final Score Donegal 5-11 Fermanagh 2-09
Donegal scorers: Ellie Long 2-4, Caitlin Doherty 2-2, Annie McGroddy 1-2, Bronagh Butler 0-1, Bronagh Duffy 0-1, Aoibhin Randles 0-1
In the second game Donegal started slowly again and were trailing by four early on.
Donegal upped their game then and really went at Monaghan but they met a strong blue wall time after time.
It didn’t deter the Donegal girls and Ellie McAllister broke through only to see her shot saved by the very impressive Monaghan keeper.
Isuelt Ní Mhathúna was the next to break through the blue line and she beat the keeper with a rasping shot but it came back of the bar.
Monaghan broke down the field and got a goal of their own. That was a bitter pill to swallow but to be fair to Donegal they regrouped and went on the attack again.
This time Amie O’Shea found the keeper in top form saving from point blank range. Donegal finally got a score on the board after 17 minutes. Like a bus, two came together with two fine points from Aimee Boyle to leave Donegal trailing 1-5 to 0-2 at the break.
Donegal started strongly again in the second half but once again they came up against a very tenacious and physically strong Monaghan defence.
Monaghan broke away and got 2 quick scores. This really made them grow in confidence.
Donegal finally got a score when Amie O’Shea worked a good opening with Anna McDaid before slotting it over the bar a free from Aimee Boyle gave Donegal hope but once again Monaghan responded and finished the game off stronger adding three more points in the final minutes.
The U14 girls are now finished with the group stage and Donegal will play Armagh in the Ulster U14 Silver final on the 20th of April.