Not content with reaching their first ever Leinster Schoolgirls Senior Cup quarter-final, Newbridge College stormed into the final four of the marquee competition to complete the semi-final line-up.
Their 3-1 win over Mount Sackville added another historic note to what has already been a ground-breaking season for the Co Kildare school which also saw the school reach the Claudia Tierney Cup final for the first time.
Against Sackville, Aoife Fitzgerald netted twice with Rachel McMullen getting the other goal. Early on, they had the lions share of possession and circle entries with McMullen slotting a lovely individual goal.
A quartet of corners went astray before Mount Sackville fought back to equalise. Newbridge, however, pinned them in their own half and 23-metre area for long periods and Fitzgerald managed to bundle one over the line in the second half. The third followed in similar fashion and made the game safe.
For coach Gavin Groves, he says has been delighted with the evolution of the team: “Every aspect of our game has improved this year,” he said. “It’s a huge statement for what we are doing down here in the school. We think we aren’t too far away from something very special.”
The likes of Sarah Jennings, McMullen, Kate Hannon, Aine Fisher, Aoife Fitzgerald and Aoife Sexton have been driving forces and they have been able to add Leinster Under-16 players Caoimhe Byrne and Aoife Glennon to give the side a further boost.
In the semi-final, they have been paired against Loreto Foxrock’s array of stars, gunning for revenge for their 3-0 Claudia Tierney final defeat. The final four games take place on February 22 with this tie raising the curtain at 12pm at Grange Road.
Foxrock knocked out reigning champions Muckross Park with two goals from Siofra O’Brien putting them through with a 2-1 win.
In the other half of the draw, Mount Anville scraped by the challenge of St Gerard’s. Robyn Murray put the Bray school 1-0 up from a well-worked corner. India Cotter equalised before half-time and then Natasha Twomey swooped to make it 2-1.
Gerard’s had a corner on the final whistle but Kate O’Hogan saved well to secure the victory. They will play St Andrew’s in their semi-final following their 6-1 win over Santa Sabina.
Senior Cup, quarter finals: Mount Anville 2 (I Cotter, ) St Gerards 1 (R Murray); Muckross Park 1 Loreto Foxrock 2 (S O’Brien 2); St Andrew’s 6 Santa Sabina 1; Newbridge College 3 (A Fitzgerald 2, R McMullen) Mount Sackville 1
Semi-finals (both at Grange Road, February 22): Newbridge College vs Loreto Foxrock, 12pm; St Andrew’s vs Mount Anville, 2pm