*Scariff/Ogonnelloe’s Marian Rodgers has a shot on goal. Photograph: Caroline O’Keeffe
Gone but certainly not forgotten as Scariff-Ogonnelloe’s trademark never-say-die tested perennial champions Slaughtneil to their optimum on Sunday.
By Eoin Brennan
Unfortunately for the Clare and Munster champions, their rallying call to arms came too late to alter the result but it was still a huge source of pride for manager Jim Minogue at the final whistle.
“You couldn’t be any more proud of our girls, they died with their boots on there and gave it everything. Slaughtneil got a great foothold in the game in the first half and I think we went nine points down at the start of the second half.
“But then we came back into it big time and eventually brought it back to three and maybe we just needed to get that goal a bit earlier. I mean time just ran out on us for a finish but in fairness the girls gave it everything and we couldn’t have asked for any more.
“There was a savage work-rate there as there always is. That was definitely the toughest game we’ve had all year. The intensity was savage, there was no time on the ball and someone was on you the whole time but the girls were relentless until the end and it’s just a pity that we came up that bit short.”
Scariff/Ogonnelloe did have the chances though as five clear-cut chances at goal were carved out before Marian Rodgers finally broke that hoodoo at the death.
“Overall in the game, we probably had more goals chances but it’s just the way the game went in that they got their two in the first half and it took us until the end of the game to get our goal. And maybe if we have gotten it earlier, we could have closed the gap quicker and it might have given us more time. But that’s the way the game goes, goals win games sometime and that’s the way it went today.”
It was certainly no shame to be just edged out by a Slaughtneil team that haven’t been beaten over the last four years and as Minogue outlines, there were infinitely more positives to take from Scariff-Ogonnelloe’s maiden voyage into the All-Ireland senior series.
“This was a massive learning curve for us this year and I think we showed today that we are every bit as good as them. Just with the way the game panned out, maybe Slaughtneil’s extra experience got them over the line but I couldn’t fault our girls one bit, they gave it absolutely everything and with the amount of improvement and progress they’ve made this year has been huge.
“That’s no consolation today, we wanted to get to the All-Ireland final but that’s just the way it works out and hopefully we’ll be back.”