Claremorris will go in search of national glory when they take on Salthill Devon in the FAI Under 17 Women’s Cup final. Back row, left to right: Liam Horkan, Emily Foy, Cara Higgins, Roisin Horkan, Naoise Heffernan, Saoirse Ronayne, Anna Burke, Bree Hession, Eabha Finnerty, Caoilinn Walsh, Caragh Murphy, Ger Ronayne. Front row, left to right: Jessica Higgins, Isobel Philips, Ashling Cummins, Katie Clarke, Ciara Bracken, Amy Cummins, Emma Walsh, Siomha McNulty, Alyssa Murphy.

Claremorris AFC go in search of national glory

CLAREMORRIS AFC's Under 17 Girls will finish off their season with a FAI Under 17 Women's Cup final against Salthill Devon FC at Eamonn Deacy Park this Sunday at 8 p.m.

This team started off in this competition back in April coming through away ties against both Strand Celtic and Yeats United from Sligo. It was opposition from Limerick next as the girls travelled to the University of Limerick to take on a Club District of Castletroy side.

After emerging victorious it was a trip to Longford for the semi-final as they overcame Ballymahon AFC. Salthill Devon now stand in the way from a piece of history, who themselves overcame Peamount United in the other semi-final.

This team has had an amazing season, and were very unfortunate in losing a Connacht Cup final on penalties to Mervue United.

After securing the Under 17 Girls Premier Division they then went on to do the league and cup double when they overcame Killala to win the Mary Walsh Under 17 cup.

As well as in domestic competition, they are very competitive at provincial and national level. The main reason for this is that the quality of teams they are facing in Mayo is very high. There is a lot of brilliant work being done with girls football in Mayo and it is seen every week.

"This is a very close-knit group," said Claremorris secretary PJ Kilcourse. "Ger Ronayne, Liam Horkan and Agnes Clarke have been there with them from the start. It's amazing what they have achieved. We have a very successful and vibrant girls side of our club from Under 17 to our academy, and it all started with this team. They are our oldest girls team in the club.

“They are a huge inspiration to everyone in the club. Amazingly they all qualify for Under 17 competitions again next year as they are still a very young side.

"Whatever happens on Sunday we are so proud of this team. It will be a magnificent occasion. We would encourage as many supporters not just from our club but throughout Mayo to come out and give these girls the support they deserve."

In a statement on their social media today, the club said: "It has been another extremely sad week in the community. We will forever mourn the loss of a young life and forever offer our support to the Flynn and Hughes families in their grief. Thankfully at times like this we are able to turn to family and friends for support and to try and make sense of the world.

"Thankfully also, at times like this, we have sport to turn to in order to try and normalize what is far from normal.

"Mayo versus Galway for an All-Ireland title – football? Yes, but not what you would expect!!

"On Sunday evening next, Claremorris AFC Under 17 ladies have the opportunity to crown what has been an amazing journey so far in this FAI National Cup competition.

"This journey didn’t just start in 2022 though and these girls, along with their coaches, Ger, Liam, and Agnes, have been an example of all that is good in our Club as they have created a bond over the past five years that has taken them, as a team and as a group of friends, to much deserved success along the way and the reward of a national final!

"The community of Claremorris and everyone in Claremorris AFC are rightly proud of what these girls have achieved, putting Claremorris on the map. These girls will walk tall on Sunday evening knowing that, even though we are a small club in comparison to other clubs who have fallen along the way, Claremorris Under 17 ladies are here on merit and fully deserve their place in the final!!

"If you are free on Sunday evening, please make your way to Eamonn Deacy Park in Galway for the 8pm kick off and give the girls from Claremorris all of your support!!

"So…the very best of good luck to Naoise, Emma, Siomha, Saoirse, Isobel, Ashling, Amy, Cara, Bree, Roisin, Caoilinn, Katie, Alyssa, Eabha, Anna, Emily, Jessica, Caragh, Ciara and their coaches Ger, Liam and Agnes!!

"Up Claremorris!!"