- Result: Galwegians Women 17 - Highfield 34
- Venue: Crowley Park on Sun Jan 15th 2017
- Competition: AIL Womens League
Galwegians played Highfield in the first round of league for 2017. A tough day was had by an industrious Galwegians team who suffered a comprehensive defeat by Highfield on a balmy day at Crowley Park.
Galwegians’ got off to an ideal start clocking up twelve points in the opening ten minutes of the game compliments of newcomer international Nicole Fowley and Ursula Sammon with Clare Raftery adding a conversion.
Five minutes into the game, Galwegians’ Emma Clery provided Sammon with an excellent pass allowing her to sail into open space and speed from the 35 metre line to open the scoring for Galwegians, no conversion. Nicole Fowley capitalised from a mistake in the opposition line out when she got possession of the ball and kicked it through and followed it effortlessly from the 20 metre line to touch down for Galwegians’ second try which Clare Raftery converted with precision.
This boded well for the hosts however Highfield were not to be underestimated as they focussed on their comeback and capitalised on mistakes made by the hosts.
Highfield responded to this early onslaught 20 minutes into the game when Ellen Murphy evaded tackles and scored on the wing, no conversion 12-5. They attacked again shortly afterwards with another try from a similar situation the far side of the pitch taking full advantage of a lapse in defence, no conversion bringing the score 12-10 to Galwegians. Highfield once more exploited a gap and scored with no conversion as it went short of the posts, bringing the tally 12-15 to Highfield.
28 minutes into the first half saw second rower Denise Redmond sent to the bin for collapsing a maul reducing Galwegians to fourteen players. Upon Redmond’s return Nicole Fowley was penalised whilst clearing the ruck and was sent to the bin for her efforts, yet another blow for the home side.
Moments before half time Highfield looked as though they were going to score again after a lineout on the Galwegians’ five metre line. Galwegians managed to regain possession and kicked for touch. At half time Highfield were in the lead, 15-12.
Highfield began the second half with intensity, retaining possession from the kick off after a string of controlled phases of play to finally exploit a gap on the wing and score and convert the try, 17-12. Highfield returned once again to the Galwegians’ ten metre line however some excellent Galwegians’ defence soaked up any pressure after much hard work regained the ball and kicked for touch. However 10 minutes into the second half after some good attacking play Highfield scored again, no conversion, 22-12 to Highfield.
Galwegians made substitutions 8 minutes into the second half. Ellie Duffy made way for Galwegians’ coach Beth Mallard in the front row and Laura Ruddy for Fowley.
14 minutes into an action packed second half saw a penalty against Highfield for not supporting themselves on the ground which Clare Raftery kicked for touch. Galwegians’ safely secured the lineout which fuelled a determined Emma Clery with the ball. Clery romped over the line, no conversion, 22-17 to Highfield. Moments later Highfield were penalised by the referee and Galwegians were awarded a penalty from the restart from halfway.
25 minutes into the second half and Highfield found the line again and scored a try which they converted, 29-17 to Highfield. Nicole Fowled replaced Sarah- Jane Fox with 27 minutes gone, Killalea replaced O’ Toole. Highfield capped off their scoring with ten minutes remaining on the clock, 34-17
The penalty count mounted throughout the game for many infringements during ruck time. This counteracted the great efforts being made on the pitch particularly after excellent forwards play from Redmond, Sheridan and Roux.
Ball in hand, Galwegians looked far superior however momentary lapses in defence saw a cunning Highfield side reap the rewards and claim a bonus point victory over a deflated Galwegians’ side.
Galwegians take on Blackrock in Dublin for their next league fixture on the 22/01/17. All support welcome. KO 1pm.