DONEGAL SOCCER

Finn Harps Academy Girls make history in Antrim as they take Plate competition

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Finn Harps Academy Girls make history in Antrim as they take Plate competition

Finn Harps girls team

In the prestigious Antrim Rovers Summer Football Festival Finn Harps girls emerged as Plate winners in a hugely competitive tournament. This is the first time ever that any female time representing Finn Harps has won an inter-club tournament. Congratulations to all the girls at the Academy - they have entered the history books of the club!

The tournament took place in the excellent facilities of Allen Park, Antrim. A well organised two-day tournament saw over 100 teams participate with the girls taking centre stage on Sunday.

Harps Girls began their day with a cagey 0-0 draw against Larne FC who compete in the Belfast League. Captain Lexi Campbell ably commanded the Harps defence and Kerry McCready made a few great saves to keep the score level. Grace Masterson and Alisha Ferry performed admirably as well. In the next game against another Belfast League club, St. Mary’s FC., Harps, although dominant were defeated with a last-minute goal. This game saw fine performances from Aoife Slevin, Clara McGuinness, Elizabeth McGee and Lauren Ferry.

The third and final group game saw Harps face a physically strong Carrick Rangers team. This game saw the excellent Ella McHugh become the first scorer ever for a Harps female team when she found the net midway through the game. Great performances in this game also from Marie Sweeney, Tess McFadden and Ava Boyle.

The semi-finals saw Harps face St. Mary’s FC., who had earlier defeated them. However, on this occasion the more determined Finn siders dominated the game with an outstanding team performance, culminating in a beautiful team goal finished by the super-sharp Ella McHugh.

The final pitted Harps against North Belfast FC. Both teams had chances in the early exchanges with Harps hitting a post and Belfast just shooting over. Harps grew in confidence as the game wore on and after a few great blocks by the Belfast defence speedy Sara Thomas broke through and finished superbly to put Harps a goal up. This was how the game finished much to the delight of those present who had witnessed some great skilful football from the Finn Harps.

Captain Lexi Campbell, who was a power of strength throughout the competition and is a great on-the-pitch organiser, was presented with the prize much to the delight of the girls and Coaches Aisling Barron and Micheál Doherty.

Finn Harps Academy Girls train on Sundays in the Academy grounds and new members are always welcome. It’s a great way to get improve your football and to make friends. Contact the club office for further details.