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It was the away team who came away with maximum points at Eamonn Deacy Park thanks to an early first-half goal from senior Republic of Ireland international Aine O’ Gorman which sees Noel Kealy’s side start their 2017 Continental Women’s National League campaign in the right key.

O’ Gorman’s strike arrived just seven minutes in, the 27-year-old hitting the back of the net with a coolly dispatched effort inside the area after she was set up by a neat assist from Dearbhaile Beirne.

With the lead secure, Jetta Berrill used her pace in the 12th minute to cut back from the right for Lauren Kelly six yards out, but her effort was too soft and was easily blocked on the line. O’ Gorman then had a long-range effort deflected wide for a corner in the 32nd minute that came to nothing before Julieann Russell controlled a loose ball expertly before curling an effort on goal that drifted narrowly off target.

Aislinn Meaney, Galway’s best player of the opening half, made several tremendous runs down the left flank in an effort to inject some creativity, but there were no goals or even any shots on target for Clery’s troops in the opening 45.

It took the away side just two minutes to fire an effort on goal from Julieann Russell, the left-sided player firing an effort just yards wide of the Galway goal, before Emily Cahill got her foot on the ball inside the Galway only for Hughes to produce a super save to deny.

In the 57th minute, UCD should have doubled their lead through Beirne after she chipped the ‘keeper from wide on the right only to see the effort hit the crossbar before eventually being ushered away to safety by the Galway defence.

The hosts will rue poor decision making in the final third, such as when Meaney opted to have a pop on goal that was blocked down when she should have played in a team-mate, but they did call Brooke Dunne into action in the 66th minute with a long-range Meabh de Burca effort that almost snuck in as well as a speculative shot by Lisa Casserly minutes later.

A disappointing result for the Tribeswomen on the night, but UCD will be happy to get off to a win.

Galway WFC: Tina Hughes (gk), Aoife Walsh, Jenny Byrne (Alina Cheatham 25), Shauna fox, Meabh de Burca, Lisa Casserly, Aislinn Meaney (Rachel Baynes 80), Lynsey McKey, Tessa Mullins, Grainne Barrett (Therese Hartley 60), Megan Carroll

UCD Waves: Brooke Dunne (gk), Jetta Berrill (Aisling Dunbar 88), Emily Cahill, Claire Walsh, Karen Duggan, Orlagh Nolan, Dearbhaile Beirne, Lauren Kelly (Catherine Cronin 67), Julieann Russell, Aine O’ Gorman, Katie Burdis

Referee: Emma Cleary (Sligo)

Trevor Murray

 

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