Tag: Donegal lgfa

Lorraine Hopes For A Kerry Victory.

The long journey to Dr Hyde Park in Roscommon won’t phase the Kerry ladies joint captain Lorraine Scanlon – after all she has been travelling the highways and byways of Ireland as an intercounty player since 2009. 

Scanlon was a mere 16 years of age back then when she made her debut in an away National League tie against Armagh, and she has been an ever present in the Kerry side since. She was not alone in gaining her first start that day and she was joined by her Castleisland Desmonds teammates Aisling Leonard and Aoife Lyons as Kerry embarked on a youth policy to try and wrestle back past glories. Kerry can still call upon 5 players that lined out that day with Scanlon, Sarah Houlihan, Amy Foley, and Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh all likely to feature against Donegal next Saturday. 

Scanlon’s debut against Armagh capped the end a hugely significant 12 months for the Knocknagoshel starlet. In 2008 she had been picked on the Irish U/16 basketball squad, and after months of travelling to Dublin for training, she was rewarded with a seat on the plane for an international tournament in Bulgaria. Superleague basketball beckoned afterwards, and a phone call from head coach James Weldon saw Scanlon line out with UL for the 2009 season. It is a year that she has very fond memories of.  

”I was just in 5th year at the time. It was all very new and exciting and I really enjoyed the experience of playing at that level. I didn’t play the year after though as I was in the middle of the Leaving Cert and with the football as well there just wasn’t the time. UL trained 2 nights a week and had a game at the weekends as well so I ended up having to make a choice so I chose the football”.  

Ironically Scanlon ended up in UL again after her Leaving Cert when she embarked on a PE degree there. Her love of basketball saw her tog out for the college’s inter varsity team and at weekends she played on the St Mary’s Castleisland Division 1 National League side. Once again she had to choose however, and in her 3rd and 4th years in the college it was the football that won out. 

“The football sessions in the college were from 9 to 11 and then I’d have to run across campus to try and make the basketball. It was too much in the finish so really football was number one in the college so I had to make a decision in third year. I continued to play with St Mary’s though, and we played National League up to the 2016/17 season. We took a year out last year but are back again in National League for the coming season so I’m really looking forward to that”. 

For now Lorraine’s attention turns to next Saturday’s mouth watering clash with Donegal, and she is under no illusions on the enormity of the task that awaits her Kerry side. Kerry shipped a 6-11 to 0-9 defeat to the Ulster kingpins in the National Football league last March and she is well aware of the threat that they possess. 

“That was a bad day. Everything that could go wrong did and we got a fair auld hiding. I think that we are in a better place now however. There is a great buzz in the camp, especially after our win over Tipperary 2 weeks ago. Although he is only here for a short while, Eddie (Sheehy) has brought his own style and vision to our play and I think that we are very much on an upward curve”. 

Donegal defeated Tipperary by 3 points in Round 2 of the qualifiers last Saturday, and it is a result that leaves Kerry automatically into the quarter final no matter what happens this Saturday. A win for either side will see them top the group, and it is very much the carrot that Scanlon feels Kerry needs. 

“If we beat Donegal we will more than likely be playing either Monaghan or Armagh in the quarter final. It all depends on how Cork get on against Armagh and will come down to scoring difference afterwards. If we lose to Donegal then we could end up playing the winners of Group 4 which are likely to be either Dublin or Mayo. Obviously we want to avoid either of those teams so a win is hugely important against Donegal. Having said that, we fear nobody so we will prepare for whatever cards we are dealt with”. 

First of all there’s the big tie against Donegal next Saturday though. The Ulster champions defeated Tipperary on a 0-17 to 0-14 scoreline in Round 2, with corner forward Geraldine McLaughlin chipping in with an impressive 12 points. Scanlon is fully aware of the threat that the Donegal forward will bring, but says that there is serious quality throughout their side. 

“McLaughlin is lethal of course. If given space she will make us pay so we will have a massive job on our hands against her. They also have the likes of Karen Guthrie and Niamh Hegarty as well and they are super players. We really will have to be on top of our game if we are to get a result. There is competition for places on our team now though, and that is a very positive thing. We will give it everything and hopefully come out with the right result on Saturday”. 

Kerry can report a clean bill of health coming into the game and thankfully the dead leg that Scanlon picked up against Tipperary in Round 2 is now fully healed. Kerry enjoyed a 3-13 to 2-10 win that day. Donegal are a step above Tipperary however, and they will have to call on all of their resources to defeat the Ulster champions. With a more attractive quarter final place on offer, the Kingdom girls could just about shade it. 

Rogers Strikes Late For Crucial First Win.

Kerry v Donegal Lidl National Football League Division 1 Round 3

Kerry 2-13 Donegal 2-12

There’s something about left legged players. They always seem to have that bit of flair and unpredictability in them that can delight you and drive you mad in equal measure.

On Sunday in Rathmore the Kerry ladies had two lefties that showed enough class and ingenuity to inspire their team to a well earned one point victory over high flying Donegal, in a game that Kerry simply had to win to avoid being caught up in a Division One relegation battle.

Not for the first time in a Kerry jersey Sarah Houlihan produced a top notch performance and her 8 points were a testament to her brilliance throughout the game. Houlihan had 2 off days against, against Cork and Dublin , but on Sunday everything she did was positive and she was a constant thorn in the Donegal side.

Equally so was wing forward Laura Rogers. A precocious underage talent, a series of injuries has delayed Rogers progress in becoming a star in the senior game. On Sunday with Kerry 2 points down, Rogers took off on a solo run and after waltzing past 3 Donegal defenders stuck the ball firmly into the back of the net . Kerry, now one point ahead with only 2 minutes left , played keep ball to see out the game as winners. Inspiring stuff when it was needed the most.

The game didn’t start so brightly for the Kerry girls. Donegal came out of the traps with all guns blazing and soon raced into a 4 point lead with just 5 minutes gone. Midfielder Karen Guthrie, who scored 2 of those points, was causing havoc as the Kerry midfield was struggling to get any foothold in the game. Kerry received a lifeline when Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh showed good poachers instincts to score a goal after Megan O’Connell made use of a long Sarah Murphy delivery to break the ball to the unmarked Ni Mhuircheartaigh who tapped it into the empty net.

Donegal replied with another point from Guthrie but good efforts from Ni Mhuircheartaigh, Houlihan and another leftie Miriam O Keefe, pushed Kerry 2 points ahead 1-4 to 0-5, with 14 minutes gone. Donegal then took over and scored 1-3 without reply as Kerry struggled with their kickouts.

First of all Kerry conceded a soft goal when a harmless looking Niamh Hegarty high ball was misjudged by Kerry goalkeeper Erris O’Carroll and corner forward Paula McGroarty was on hand to tap the ball into the empty net. Further Donegal points followed from Hegarty , Friel and dangerous full forward Geraldine McLaughlin .Houlihan steadied the ship for Kerry with 2 points, one from a free,  before Ni Mhuircheartaigh controversially had a goal disallowed as the referee adjudged her to have fouled her opponent when challenging for the ball.

Buoyed by this let off Donegal finished the first half as they had started and Hegarty and McLaughlin pointed to leave them 1-10 to 1-6 ahead at the break..

Some strong words from manager Graham Shine seemed to inspire his charges to a good start to the second half and Kerry put over 3 points in a row from Rogers, and 2 from Houlihan, to leave them just one in arrears. A bad Kerry wide was punished to the full by Donegal when Geraldine McLaughlin goaled from the kickout following a good long delivery over the top of the Kerry defence from Roisin Friel.

Donegal were now 5 ahead but Kerry refused to die. Houlihan put over 2 on the bounce with McLaughlin replying with one for Donegal. Ni Mhuircheartaigh pointed when a goal looked on to leave just 3 points in the game with 5 minutes left on the clock. Hegarty was sin binned for Donegal for back chat, and Houlihan pointed the free to bring it back to 2. Too little too late?

Rogers had different ideas and scored her wonder goal to finish off the Donegal challenge and gain 3 valuable league points for Kerry.

Kerry; Erris O’Carroll, Aislinn Desmond, Caroline Kelly, Eilis Lynch, Sarah Murphy Anna Galvin Ciara Murphy, Amanda Brosnan, Lorraine Scanlon , Laura Rogers 1-1) , Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh(1-3, 0-2f), Denise Hallissey, Sarah Houlihan(0-8, 0-5f), Megan O’Connell, Miriam O Keefe(0-1). Subs : Eilish O’Leary(O’Keeffe 25).


Donegal ;Laura Gallagher; Treasa Doherty, Ciara Hegarty, Kate Keaney; Theresa McCafferty, Nicole Mc McLaughlin, Shauna McGruddy; Katy Herron, Karen Guthrie (0-5, 1f); Grainne Houston, Niamh Hegarty (0-1), Eilish Ward; Roisin Friel (0-2), Geraldine McLaughlin (1-4,0-2f), Paula McCrory (1-0). Subs; Niamh McDaid(Houston 51).

Referee; N McCormack (Laois)

Kerry Team v Donegal

Kerry senior ladies manager Graham Shine has made one change to the line up for the visit of Donegal to Rathmore  for Round 3 of the Lidl National football league Division 1 which takes place  on Sunday at 1pm. 

Into the side at full forward comes Megan O’Connell of Southern Gaels who missed the 3 point loss to Dublin in the last round in Castleisland.  

Emma Sherwood is unavailable for selection and her absence sees Anna Galvin move into the centre half back position. 

Amanda Brosnan and Lorraine Scanlon continue at midfield while the in form Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh moves to the centre half forward position having played at full forward against Dublin. Caroline Kelly of Southern Gaels will once again captain the side from full back. 

Meanwhile Donegal have named an unchanged side from the team that defeated Galway by one point last weekend. 

The Kerry team in full is ; 

1 Elaine O Sullivan Southern Gaels 

2 EILIS LYNCH Castleisland Desmonds 

3 CAROLINE KELLY Southern Gaels 




7 Ciara Murphy Foxrock/Cabinteely 

8 LORRAINE SCANLON CastleislanDesmonds 

9 Amanda Brosnan Dr Crokes 






15 Miriam O Keeffe Finuge/St Senans 

16 Linda Bruggener Spa 

17 Patrice Dennehy Beaufort 


20 Erin Finnucane Clounmacon 

21 Elish O Leary Killcummin 

22 Niamh Carmod yFinuge/St Senans 

23 Cliodhna Hayes John Mitchells 

24 Erris O Carroll John Mitchells 




28 Jackie Horgan Finuge/St Senans 


Kerry v Donegal Preview.

Lidl Ladies National Football League Division One Round 3 Preview .

High flying Donegal travel to Rathmore next Sunday to take on the Kerry ladies in Round 3 of the Lidl National Football League Division One. Donegal travel with 2 wins out of 2, having defeated Armagh on a 4-10 to 0-11 scoreline in Round 1 and Galway by 2-10 to 1-12 in Round 2.  In contrast Kerry come into the game on the back of 2 defeats, a 5-17 to 1-11 hiding from Cork in Mallow followed by a 0-8 to 1-8 defeat to Dublin in Castleisland last weekend.

To be fair to Kerry the game against Cork came after just 3 weeks preparation with a new management team. You don’t go into Cork’s back yard and expect a result in such circumstances, and indeed the Cork ladies were merciless in putting Kerry to the sword that day. Manager Graham Shine learnt from the defeat and with 11 positional changes for the game against Dublin, the Kerry ladies gave a much improved performance against last year’s All Ireland finalists. Indeed if it wasn’t for some very wayward shooting (Kerry shot 12 wides) there is no doubt that they would have emerged victorious.

Donegal are back in top tier league football once more having won the Division Two title very impressively last year. They have adjusted to the higher level quite easily and will travel to Rathmore with confidence after their 2 wins. Geraldine McLaughlin is very much their star player, the full forward contributed 1-5 against Galway in the last round and scored the winning point in injury time. Roisin Friel and Niamh Hegarty will also have to be watched, Kaneisha McKinney and Katy Heron are a formidable midfield pairing ,while Nicole McLaughlin is a dynamic figure at centre half back.

It is likely that Shine will make some personnel changes to the Kerry side for next Sundays game. Megan O’Connell, who missed the game in Castleisland ,is likely to come back into the team and there is also the possibility of Shine having a look at a couple of new players as he strives to find the winning formula. He will be hoping that players like Aislinn Desmond, Lorraine Scanlon, Emma Sherwood, Amanda Brosnan and Anna Galvin continue with the good form that they have shown in the first 2 league games.

Kerry have failed to score a goal in the league so far. This lack of penetration has to be a concern to the Kerry management as you will rarely win games at this level without them. In contrast Donegal have struck 6 in their last couple of games, including 4 against Armagh ,so their goal scoring opportunities will certainly have to be curtailed. In fairness the Kerry defence looked very solid against Dublin, having endured a torrid time against Cork .The positional changes certainly worked from that point of view with the more defensive structure of the lineup making it much more difficult to penetrate the Kerry backline. Shine will be hoping for more of the same on Sunday.

If Kerry take their chances and stop Donegal from scoring goals there is every possibility that they will win. Sounds simple doesn’t it! Kerry to win by 2.

Kerry v Donegal in Rathmore on Sunday at 1pm.