Paul Corcoran reports from Éamonn Deacy Park
Galway WFC have sealed the U-17 Women’s National League and Cup double after seeing off Wexford Youths in the League Final at Eamonn Deacy Park on a scoreline of 3-1.
Blessing Kinsley took the lead for Wexford early in the second half, but Galway fought back with three goals coming from Annie Gough, Kayla Brady and Aoibhin Donnelly to seal the victory.
Both sides were evenly matched during the opening exchanges and it took until the 11th minute for the first clear cut chance to be registered.
Saoirse Healey found Anna Fahey in the box with a lovely through ball, but Doyle-Kavanagh was able to block the shot down to keep the sides level. The ball went as far as Shauna Brennan, but she dragged a shot wide to kill the play.
Fahey went close once again in the 19th minute. This time her movement inside the box got her into an excellent position to receive the ball from Shauna Brennan, but the striker’s snapshot was blocked away by Doyle-Kavanagh for the second time.
In the 36th minute Galway could have taken the lead with a lovely move. Brady played a long ball into Kellie Brennan; the winger held the ball well before playing it out wide to Shauna Brennan. The defender set Fahey up again with a great cross, but the striker failed to capitalise on the chance and Doyle-Kavanagh gathered the ball.
Doyle-Kavanagh just about managed to keep the sides level going into the second half after Shauna Brennan won a free just outside the box.
Annie Gough struck an excellent ball high and into the box and the goalkeeper just about got her hands to the ball to slap it away from goal.
The deadlock was broken in the 47th minute completely against the run of play. Therese Kinnevey collected the ball just outside the box, but the defender turned and played a poor pass goalward into the path of Blessing Kinsley who took aim and struck the ball around Abbie Ronayne who was off her line.
That lead only lasted three minutes with Galway scoring of those beautiful rare goals directly from a corner kick. It was Annie Gough who struck the ball in high, Doyle-Kavanagh just could not leap high enough as the ball escaped her grasp and curled into the net.
Kelsey Munroe started the drive for Galway to take the lead with a great run from the back. She knocked the ball forward to Kellie Brennan with a great through ball, but Doyle-Kavanagh closed her down quickly to make the save.
The ball fell to Brady just outside the box, however, and with the goalmouth exposed the midfielder smashed the ball into the bottom corner.
Second half substitute Abbie Callanan nearly killed the game off for Galway in the 76th minute with a blistering shot on goal.
It was Saoirse Healey who played the cross across the box to the forward but the resulting shot was saved excellently by Doyle-Kavanagh to keep the deficit at one.
The victory sealing goal eventually came just before full-time courtesy of Aoibhin Donnelly. The midfielder started the move by playing the ball out to Kellie Brennan who played it on to Shauna Brennan.
The defender took the ball into the box before squaring it to Donnelly and the midfielder finished the move by smashing the ball into the top corner.
Galway WFC: Abbie Ronayne; Shauna Brennan, Kelsey Monroe, Therese Kinnevey, Annie Gough; Kellie Brennan, Kate Slevin, Kayla Brady, Jane Trehy, Saoirse Healey (Aoibhin Donnelly, 78); Anna Fahey (Abbie Callanan, 68).
Subs not used: Hannah Walsh, Hana Ueno, Ciara McManus, Emma O’Donnoghue, Bryna Milton, Allanah McNeill.
Wexford Youths: Jean Doyle-Kavanagh; Becky Connaughton, Aimee Bates-Crosbie (Laura Butler, 71), Neema Nyangasi, Breda Cushen; Eimear Gabbett, Freya Roche, Kira Bates-Crosbie, Beth Evesson, Seren Ward; Blessing Kinsley.
Subs not used: Amie Dreelan, Marie O’Callaghan, Aine McDonald, Maeve Williams, Shanise O’Reilly, Cliodhna Donnelly.
Booked: Becky Connaughton (40), Beth Evesson (52).
Referee: Bartley Folan.
Extratime.ie Player of the Match: Kellie Brennan (Galway WFC).