Dublin University Football Club (DUFC) Women were no match for Leinster League Division 2 leaders Maynooth University Barnhall today, losing out 25-10 at Santry Avenue in difficult conditions .
With the rain beginning to fall just as the match kicked off, the early proceedings were characterised by mistakes from DUFC. Barnhall nearly punished Trinity after an early infringement. Electing to go for a scrum just inside the Trinity 10-metre line, Katelynn Doran picked and went blind, breaking a couple of would-be tackles only to be forced into touch just shy of the line.
DUFC failed to secure the resulting lineout, something that would become a common theme throughout the match. After winning a scrum a few phases later, Barnhall capitalised, creating an overlap that outside centre Jai Keira McNamara converted with ease. A missed conversion left the score at 5-0.
With Storm Dennis wreaking havoc, both teams committed a number a handling errors from the restart inside the. DUFC were next to strike, after a badly sliced clearance kick from Barnhall’s Orfhlaith Murray gifted them a scrum five metres out. Trinity won a penalty off the scrum, and a quick tap and go sent Jane Leahy crashing over the line on the quarter-hour. A routine conversion in front of the posts allowed Honor MacNamara to give DUFC the lead.
Barnhall began to take control of the ball, but several unforced errors meant the game was played predominantly between the 22s.
Right on the half-hour mark, Barnhall made their possession count. Again, it was Doran who made the initial line break, and Barnhall worked it wide where DUFC’s Sinead O’Carroll was left in no-man’s land against three Barnhall attackers. Murray created the space with a dummy and crossed the try-line herself. She was unable to convert, however, leaving the score at 10-7, and a penalty from DUFC’s MacNamara on the stroke of half-time brought the game level going into the break.
If penalties punctuated the opening phases of the first period, it was injuries that marred the second, with four stoppages inside the opening minutes of the half. Barnhall came out of those 10 minutes stronger, and they capitalised on their momentum when lock Holly Leach powered over from close range to give the visitors a five-point lead.
As rain turned to sleet, Banhall grabbed their fourth try of the match, with a quick tap and go allowing them to build phases under DUFC’s before Cliodhna McLoughlin finally received the ball out wide. She touched down with ease in the corner, stretching the gap to 10.
DUFC just could not retain possession whenever they had it. Constant pressure from an unrelenting, physical Barnhall side meant they could not gain a foothold, and they could have few complaints when Barnhall’s Bianca Paun muscled her way over for another unconverted try that left the score at 25-10.
While the weather played a part, DUFC Women will be disappointed with a poor display against Barnhall today. With only two wins from eight matches so far this season, they’ll need to bounce back with a win over Mullingar in their next fixture.