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McConnell shines as Donaghmoyne charge into final

Three Ulster ladies teams threw their All-Ireland ladies club credentials on the weekend line but only Donaghmoyne in the senior ranks made progress.

Monaghan representatives Donaghmoyne were doubly engaged in All-Ireland last four contests, with both A and B teams trying to reach their respective finals at senior and junior grade.

The Donaghmoyne junior squad played first on Saturday at home base but lost out by a two-goal margin to Cork side Boherbue.

Donaghmoyne’s senior side fared better 24 hours later when clearing the semi-final hurdle provided by Shelmaliers of Wexford.

There was no luck, though, for Fermanagh and Ulster intermediate champions Newtownbutler who were defeated by Cahir from Tipperary at Donagh in yesterday’s intermediate semi-final.

Donaghmoyne beat Shelmaliers (Wexford) 1-21 to 0-7, Catriona McConnell scoring an impressive 12 points, 10 of them in open play mode, as the Monaghan side booked their All-Ireland final spot against Mayo’s Carnacon.

Donaghamoyne blitzed their opponents in a dazzling first half display that finished 0-15 to 0-1 in favour of the Fontennoy girls.

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As well as McConnell’s eye-catching total, Donaghmoyne harvested supporting scores courtesy of Niamh McCarty (1-2), Hazel Kingham (0-3), Sharon Courtney, Niamh Callan, Majella Woods and Fiona Lafferty (0-1 apiece).

It’s full steam ahead now in terms of Donaghmoyne’s preparations for the All-Ireland final a week on Sunday as they endeavour to end 2012 by pocketing the ultimate prize.

Carnacon, with multiple All-Star Cora Staunton among their ranks, will provide stern opposition but hopes are high round Donaghmoyne that this current crop of players can write another memorable chapter into the club’s history.

Newtownbutler (Fermanagh) lost to Cahir (Tipperary) by 5-10 to 3-5 in the Intermediate semi-final.

The opening half proved to be Newtownbutler’s undoing in their quest to reach the All-Ireland intermediate club championship final. They actually led at the break by 2-2 to 1-4 but a series of missed opportunities when on top came back to bite them in the second half as Cahir took command.

Noelle Connolly netted a brace of first half goals for the Fermanagh and Ulster champions but the home team should have added a good bit more to the scoreboard during this segment of play.

Maura McDonnell converted a second half penalty for Newtownbutler, the likes of Rose Connolly, Roisin Courtney, Marcella Connolly and Maria Connolly contributing points.

Cahir, though, found top gear at the opposite end of the park and a scoring burst spelt the end of Newtownbutler’s great championship run this season.

Donaghmoyne B were defeated 3-6 to 1-6 by Boherbue (Cork) 3-6 in the junior semi-final.

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