Defending champions Colga FC have progressed to the last eight in this year’s WFAI U-16 Irish Cup after defeating Castlebar Town 2-0 in Kilcornan on Saturday.
Colga and city rivals Salthill, who overcame Yeats of Mayo by 3-0 in Sunday’s fixture, will now go into the draw for the quarter-finals.
Colga’s midfield prowess was on top in the first half, creating chances for both Rachael Bannon and Louise Brennan. It eventually bore fruit when on 21 minutes when Bannon, from a through ball, produced a clean strike for the first goal of the day. Current Irish internationals Keara Cormican and Lisa Casserly, who marshalled the middle of the park, continued to created a solid platform for further attacks.
Castlebar began to push forward with attempts from Kirsten Sheeran, but these failed to test Saoirse Burke in goal. Further breaks from midfield were also thwarted by a well-organised back four which included Maria O’Dowd, Donagh Hanrahan, Linda Corcoran and Alana Moran, who expertly marshalled the defence throughout the match.
Although O’Dowd’s quick thinking put Eimear Feeney down the wing, her cross was unlucky not to find either Brennan or Ruth Horkan as the half finished with Colga 1 - 0 ahead.
Facing into the elements in the second half, Castlebar were on the back foot, and it was not long before they conceded a second goal. It came when Casserly dispossessed the rearguard to coolly finish to the net from 12 yards.
This goal six minutes into the second half gave Colga the momentum to create further chances for Bannon, Casserly and Horkan, who broke well from midfield. Although under pressure in the final quarter as Castlebar pressed hard, Colga refused to concede.
Seven Colga players will represent the club on the Connacht u-16 and u-18 squads.
The full squads are: U-16, Saoirse Burke (Colga ), Kirsten Sheeran (Castlebar Town ), Shauna Fox (Salthill ), Alana Moran (Colga ), Cadhla Gillen (Salthill ), Maria O’Dowd (Colga ), Eilish Healy (Killala ), Lauren Boles (Strand Celtic Sligo ), Sarah Rowe (Ballina Town ), Fiona Treacy (Ballina Town ), Lisa Casserly (Colga ), Rebecca Maughan (Kilmurry ), Keara Cormican (Colga ), Ailbe Clancy (Manor Rangers Sligo ), Stacey Muldowney (Castlebar Celtic ), Sara McGeogh (Yeats Utd ), Aileen Collins (Castlebar Celtic ), Eileen Collins (Killala ), Chelsea Farrell (Ballina Town ), Ciara Lynagh (Salthill ), Katie Carter (Salthill ). Connacht U-18: Laura Mannion (Manulla ),Avril Kilkelly (Castlebar Celtic ),Carol Hegarty (Ballina Town ), Amy Hopkins (Castlebar Celtic ), Stacey Freyne (Manulla ), Emma Hansberry (Strand Celtic ), Laura Carroll (Salthill Devon ), Shaunagh Jackson (Salthill Devon ), Aoife Brennan (Manulla ), Jenny Linnane (Colga ), Leah Philips (Colga ), Alanna Naughton (Killalla ), Ina Butler (Salthill Devon ), Sarah Prendergast (Castlebar Celtic ), Aileen Gilroy (Killalla ), Dora Gorman (Salthill Devon ), Jennifer Byrne (Bealnamulla ),Vicky Mc Enery (Bealnamulla ), Sarah Loyd (Bealnamulla ), Sorcha Dowd (Longford Town ).