Soccer: New breed look part as Alex' clear final hurdle
ALEXANDRA COLLEGE 3 LORETO SECONDARY SCHOOL 2
ALEXANDRA College will aim to make it third time lucky when they go in search of the final national title up for grabs in this year's FAI Schools season.
Dave Collins' side came from behind last week to edge out Loreto Secondary School in the Minor Girls Leinster final in Newtownmountkennedy.
Incredibly, it was Alexandra's third Leinster showpiece of the season -- the senior side won theirs, while the first years recently lost out at the final hurdle.
Capping their second provincial title of the season with an All-Ireland success would be particularly fitting for the school as the seniors were dramatically denied national success at the third attempt in their own final.
Alexandra's latest group of youngsters would do well to emulate the success of the existing group of senior players, who won provincial honours at each age group in recent years.
They never did clear that final hurdle though and the minor side can begin their own careers with a bang by going one better in the coming weeks.
Bray school Loreto threatened to ruin Alexandra's chances of Leinster glory last Thursday when they took the lead in the opening minutes, but were soon pegged back.
Captain Aisling Nugent led by example from midfield mid-way through the opening period when she intercepted a pass in the opposition half and capped a fine solo run with an equally impressive finish.
The scoreline remained the same until half-time, but a strong start from Alexandra was capitalised on when Anna Roopnarinesingh gave them the lead with a thunderous strike. The same girl then gave her side a two-goal lead and looked to have sealed victory when she reacted first in the box to finish soon after.
Loreto responded late on to reduce the deficit to a single goal, but Alexandra held out for the win and took the provincial title and a place in the upcoming national semi-final.
ALEXANDRA COLLEGE: Louise McCollum; Amber Gleeson, Lilly O'Donnell, Aoife Roland, Tammy Small; Louise McPhillips, Aisling Nugent, Sophie Gleeson, Emily Shannon; Anna Roopnarinesingh, Ceithleann Ní Chonlon.