|City of Derry Ladies
||24 - 10
City Of Derry Ladies 24
Enniskillen Ladies 10
Enniskillen ladies travelled to City of Derry RFC on Sunday to play the hosts in this years Rosie Stewart shield final. In bright clear conditions the two sides faced off in what proved to be an intense physical encounter throughout. Within the opening 5 minutes Derry proved their physicality in the scrums which resulted in good link play between their scrum half and number 8 who ran at the Enniskillen line and, with a few missed tackles from the skins defence, ran through for the 1st try of the game. This proved to be the perfect start for the City Of Derry side as they began to gain momentum and didn't shy away from moving the ball quickly from the break down and running at the lagging Enniskillen defence. Possession remained with Derry as they turned over ball consistently; spotting space out wide their scrum half quickly offloaded to their 10 who again ran at skins, off loading to their winger who ran in for their second try of the day.
Following the restart, Skins began to find their feet and apply more pressure in defence which culminated in a knock-on and another skins drive up the field. In what was a running theme for the game, the first skins line out was stolen by Derry and they mauled the ball well, gaining important yards and eventually going over in the corner for their 3rd try. From the kick off play remained around the midfield point and Some powerful charges by the skins pack, namely Ashling Maguire, brought skins deep into the Derry half where they finally began to play the rugby they’ve displayed in previous encounters, quickly recycling ball at the break down and going through more penetrating attacking phases. Unfortunately this was to no avail as a lot of this building pressure ended disappointingly with handling errors. Again the Derry scrum half and number 10 worked well together and played the ball slickly through the hands to go over for their 4th try and go in at half time 24-0 up.
The second half was a much different affair as Skins came out with an aggression and determination that was absent in the 1st half. From the kick off they were much more dogged in defence and Derry began to make mistakes. The defensive line pushed up quickly and didn't allow Derry the momentum they were granted in the 1st half. From this, Skins began to counter ruck and compete for ball at the breakdown. Pauline Gallagher managed to turn over ball on the half way allowing skins quick ball to out half Noreen Nethercott, displaying some fancy footwork to find a gap in the Derry line to go over for skins' first try of the day, just rewards for her tireless work throughout the game. Derry returned to play eager to score and proved disruptive at the breakdown, where once again Skins were slow to react at the ruck. Although remedying this in the second half, it resulted in a number of turnovers, most notably 20 minutes into the 2nd half when, against the run of play, Skins lost possession through a turnover ball which was quickly distributed to a Derry back who broke the scrambling defensive line and looked sure to score, only to be tackled by determined full back Alice hurst. Enniskillen settled themselves and grew more patient in defence as the encounter went on. With both sides tiring from this physical slog Enniskillen had to dig deep in the last 10 minutes and, after turning over a Derry scrum on the 22, Skins began to play phase after phase of excellent rugby that finally wrought rewards when Shauna Mcmorrow crossed the line for a well deserved team try, leaving the score 24-10 at the final whistle. The work rate and dedication of every player was commendable, and even though the result didn't go Enniskillens way the 2nd half was a worthy reflection of the hard work and determination of the girls throughout the season as they continue to develop.