TULLAMORE 1st XI, who are currently placed second in the Leinster League table, met league leaders Monkstown in the Harriers Ground on Sataurday last and lost out by the odd goal in five.
The game started at a furious place something Tullamore had been expecting and were well prepared for. As a result of this Tullamore looked the brighter in the first half and dominated the first 10 minutes with mid-fielders Eimear Hackett, Sabrina Carroll and Ciara Molloy laying off good ball to the awaiting forwards. Niamh Redmond upfront was unlucky not to open the scoring after a good counter attack up the left side.
Tullamore kept the pressure on and 15 minutes into the game were rewarded for this pressure. The ball broke in the Monkstown circle and Patricia Periera sent a cracking shot to the back of the net. Monkstown were unsettled by this and Amanda Haslam for Tullamore was unlucky not to put Tullamore two ahead when her shot went just wide of the post.
It wasn’t long before Monkstown went looking for an equaliser and just before the half time whistle Monkstown sent in a dubious shot which seemed to confuse the Tullamore defence and the ball dribbled over the Tullamore line.
The second d half saw a new lease of life in the Monstown team however Emma Delahunt and Monica Clearly were superb in defence in keeping the Monkstown forwards at bay. Goalkeeper Clodagh Armitage as always pulled off a number of top class saves. 10 minutes into the half Tullamore went 2-1 down, however they didn’t not lose heart.
Tullamore’s midfielders battled hard to send in accurate passes to the awaiting forwards. And their second goal came from one of these passes as Niamh Redmond got on the end of a great ball after Kirby Cox and Sabrina Carroll battled hard to turn over possession. Niamh sent the ball flying through the goalies legs and Tullamore were back in the game.
Tullamore kept pressing for the winner, however against the run of play Monkstown got a great counter attack and caught the Tullamore defence off-guard and sent in a great shot which was to be the winner.
At the final whistle you could see the disappointment on the faces of the Tullamore players. They will now wait and hope that the rest of the fixtures go their way if they are to have any chance in capturing the league title.
Tullamore meet Railway Union at 12pm in the Harriers Grounds on Sunday next.
TULLAMORE: Clodagh Armitage, Deirdre Rigney, Kirby Cox, Emma Delahunt, Monica Cleary, Eimear Hackett, Sabrina Carroll, Ciara Molloy, Patricia Periera, Niamh Redmond, Amanda Haslam, Kate Cosgrove.
Tullamore seconds were not in action this weekend and they will play at home next weekend.
Hockey Ball: The 25th Anniversary Hockey ball will take place in the Tullamore Court Hotel on Saturday, March 26. Tickets are available from any committee member at a cost of €25 per person.