Date Time Competition Season
2 July 2023 2:00 pm All Ireland Junior Championship 2023

Match Report

Mee Guides Limerick Into Junior Semi-Finals

Cathy Mee served as the catalyst for Limerick this afternoon, her 2-3 helping them overcome a stern Sligo side to book their spot in the semi-finals.

Mee was the hero for Limerick and with Down’s big win up north, that saw both through ahead of their meeting in Newcastle West next weekend to determine who tops the group, Mee scored two goals past the midway mark of the opening half, as their defence stood tall to keep out Sligo.

They ended the first half leading 2-5 to 0-5, but Sligo started the second half the better and put them under intense pressure until they found the net, but Limerick held their nerve and remained calm to take their scores, they might rue missing some goal chances to put the game to bed, but will be in the final four of the championship.

Limerick started well with an early score from Deborah Murphy in the second minute, but Sligo failed to hit a reply immediately, a misplaced pass first allowed Limerick to clear the danger, before Tara Brehony had their first shot at the posts but it tailed wide. 

Leah Duffy found the Sligo reply in the fifth minute with a terrific right footed effort on the far side of the field, Amy Ryan and Katie Walsh exchanged further scores as the opening was tight as both teams were patient in attack.

Duffy aided Sligo into coming into the game and then gave them the lead 13 minutes in, but points from Iris Kennelly and Karen O’Leary put Limerick back ahead at the end of the first quarter, Wlash kicked her second point a minute later and the sides were level for the fourth time.

The Treaty Women found the net after 17 minutes through Cathy Mee, off the back of a well worked attack Iris Kennelly tried to put Limerick back in front with a point but it came off the crossbar, the Sligo defence chased the loose ball down, but Mee reacted well to get a touch on the ball to put it past the Sligo players along the surface, creating space and then struck a left footed shot which saw the ball roll along the ground into the right hand bottom corner for a 1-4 to 0-4 lead.

Mee two minutes later found the net for a second time, again from a well worked move she used her pace to cut inside and broke the tackle well and looked to the posts, but her shot dipped and looked to go in over Ellen Maguire in the Sligo goal, the keeper had caught the ball to prevent the shot dipping under the crossbar, but was deemed to have stepped over the line just after the save and the umpires signalled the goal was given, a dramatic two minutes in Newcastle West.

In the blink of an eye the game went from being deadlocked to a six point lead for the hosts, they held that six point margin until the 25th minute, Limerick’s defence was strong but with an advantage occurring Sligo were awarded a free as they could find no way through, Walsh tapped over her third point and the lead was five, 2-4 to 0-5.

Limerick ended the half the better as Mee kicked her first point of the tie off a free, restoring that six point margin, they went in search of further scores but were unable to breach the Sligo rearguard, Mee had a second free with the final act of the opening half but from a long way out it dropped short of the goal, but Limerick headed into the break knowing their 2-5 to 0-5 lead had them in the driving seat for the semi-finals.

Sligo almost had great scoring chances in the opening minute of the second half, Walsh looked to the posts but it drifted right and wide, then from Carol Bateman’s kickout, Sligo turned it over and almost had a goal on as the keeper was stranded, but Limerick cleared the threat for a 45.

Bateman made up for that error two minutes later as Walsh dropped a free short, the keeper saved and then held possession to deny Sligo an early sniff of a goal chance, the pressure looked on the Shannonsdiers in the early few minutes as the scoreline from Newry had Sligo out of the championship.

All the pressure coming in four minutes and it eventually reaped a reward for the Magpies, Aife Haran with a dangerous high ball into the square, Walsh was the target and had Bateman and a Limerick defender to beat, Walsh flicked home inside in the square leaving a goal between them, after a dramatic start to the second half.

Limerick were struggling in front of goal and almost had a chance at their third goal after 40 minutes, Karen O’Leary made a terrific burst to get through the Sligo defence but a big shoulder came in and stopped the Limerick forward from pulling the trigger.

Another goal chance came a minute later as Roisin Ambrose made a great one two move to break through on the Sligo goal, but yet again the crossbar was hit by a Limerick player, it broke to Iris Kennelly, she hit the post and was put under pressure, but the referee signalled for a free, with 43 minutes gone Limerick were on the board in the second half as Mee converted, back to a four point game.

From here the tempo dropped as both sides started to hold onto possession more, but some errors creeped in for both teams and turnovers were frequent, we had to wait 13 minutes for the next score and it came for Limerick as Mee struck another free, but Duffy cancelled it out as we had just minutes left of normal time.

Limerick could have put the game to bed in the 58 minute, Caoimhe McGrath laid a pass off to Ambrose who was racing toward the Sligo goal, she then flicked a pass across the face of goal for Karen O’Leary, but her chance at goal was saved well by Maguire in the Sligo goal.

As the clock ticked into the red, it was up to the discretion of the match referee, how long would be added, it was a nervy six minutes of added time but the Limerick defence as they had done throughout the contest, held firm and just the sole score from Duffy, saw their lead shrank as they booked their spot in the semi-finals.


1Carol Bateman Goalkeeper
2Fiona Bradshaw Defender
3Yvonne Lee Defender
4Alva Quaid Defender
5Grace Lee Defender
6Laura Walshe Defender
7Lauren Ryan Defender
8Roisin Ambrose Midfielder
9Katie Heelan 20 Midfielder
10Deborah Murphy Defender 2'
11Cathy Mee 19 Forward 17', 19'
30', 43', 56'
12Iris Kennelly 18 Forward 14'
13Leah Coughlan Forward
14Amy Ryan 22 Forward 8'
15Karen O’Leary Forward 15'
16Sophie Hennessy Goalkeeper
17Meadhbh MacNamara Defender
18Caoimhe McGrath 12 Forward
19Rose Hyland 11 Forward
20Ellie Woulfe 9 Forward
21Anna O’Dea Forward
22Clare O’Meara 14 Midfielder
23Amy Curtin Forward
24Roisin Breedy Forward
25Sarah Dillon Defender
26Laoise Browne Forward
27Chloe Brosnahan Forward
28Kate Kennedy Forward
29Grainne Mc Kenna Forward
30Andrea O’Sullivan Forward


1Ellen McGuire Goalkeeper
2Claire Dunne Defender
3Aoife Morrisroe Defender
29Cara King 22 Defender
5Jade Lyons Defender
6Sinead Naughton 30 Defender
7Tara Brehony Defender
8Sarah Cunney Midfielder
9Sinead Regan 28 Midfielder
19Aife Haran Forward
11Sarah Reynolds Forward
12Ciara Gorman 24 Forward
20Katie Walsh Forward 34'
11', 16', 25'
14Lauren Normanlly 13 Forward
15Leah Duffy Forward 5', 13', 57', 60+5'
16Lauren Fitzgerald
4Jennie Creegan Defender
10Orla Naughton Forward
13Megan McCormack 14 Forward
17Rachel O’Brien Forward
18Ciara Scanlon Defender
21Isabella Henry
22Sarah Curley 29 Defender
23Tara Philips
24Maeve Casserly 12 Forward
25Fiona Feeney
26Kate Hosey
27Ellie McDermott Defender
28Leah Kelly 9 Forward
30Roisin Molloy 6 Midfielder


Newcastlewest GAA
Newcastle West, County Limerick

Diarmuid Kearney is a freelance Sports Journalist based in Co Kerry. He has more than 5 years experience covering domestic and international soccer for different media organisations, while also working for local and national print and digital organisations covering GAA.