By Mark Strange
Larne v Cliftonville
Unfortunately for the girls, a slow start to the game proved too much to recover from as a couple of early Cliftonville goals were enough to win the game for them. After these goals, Sophie Aiston had the best Larne chance in the first half after getting on the end of a great pass from Holly McKeen only for the Cliftonville ‘keeper to make a good save.
In the second half, the girls got stuck in and created some scoring chances but could not find a way through. However, they can be very proud of themselves for they played after the break.
POTM: Luci Brownlee
Larne v Rosario
The Larne girls started their league campaign with a convincing win over Rosario. Every girl played fantastically and stuck to the game plan. Hannah McClenaghan opened the scoring with a great strike from outside the box with Teagan Gribben adding a second shortly after.
The girls kept their foot on the gas after this but the Rosario goalkeeper made some good saves. However, she could not stop Aiston from getting her second just before half-time. Just before the break, Larne slacked off slightly and allowed Rosario back into the game, meaning it was at half-time.
The girls learned from this, though, and came out at the start of the second half determined not to let the opposition have any more chances to get back into the game. Teagan Gribben grabbed another two to complete her hat-trick as she and Sophie Aiston shared the five goals between them. Hannah McClenaghan also put in a great performance. It was a great start to the season and the hope is that the girls can continue this form going forward.
POTM: Teagan Gribben
Larne v Berlin Swifts
The girls had a strong performance against a good Berlin Swiftettes side, starting well and moving the ball well. However, Berlin took the lead against the run of play with a long-range strike from distance.
It did not take long for the equaliser to arrive as Pasleigh Baird bundled the ball in from close range from a corner to leave things all square at half-time. In the second half, Sophia Hamill turned into the game-winner as she scored a double while stand-in keeper Mia Campbell made some smart saves to keep the advantage at two and left the team with the win.
POTM: Sofia Hamill
Larne v Carryduff
The Larne U17 girls put five past Carryduff in an extremely pleasing performance. The first half was a difficult affair with the swirling wind and Carryduff putting in a physical performance. However, the Larne girls went into the break ahead thanks to a Morgan Beatty strike.
The second half did not get off to a great start as goalkeeper Kate was sent off rather harshly for a last-ditch challenge where she appeared to get the ball but the referee disagreed. However, this did not deter the Inver Women as Alix Morgan added a quick-fire brace before a Rachael Robinson strike from distance made it four.
Carryduff attempted to get back into the game but the Larne back four held tight and Mia Snoddy broke away from the defence to add a late fifth. A special mention to debutante Bethany Gibson and young left-wing Zara Mahoney.
POTM: Riley Harrison
Larne v Bloomfield
It was the first league match of the season for the U15 girls against a Bloomfield team who were also stepping up from 9-aside to 11-aside. Larne started with the winds to their backs and after around ten minutes of play, they settled into their style of play and began to test the Bloomfield goalkeeper.
There were three quick-fire goals with the first a stunning strike from the outside of Eimear Ward’s boot before Jodie Maybin passed the ball into an empty net following a good save from the Bloomfield goalkeeper off Dee Kenny’s shot. Lucy Irwin made a mazy run through the defence to make it three with a great solo effort.
After being denied before, Dee Kenny was not to be stopped again as she was not content with just one but two goals cutting in off the wing and rifling past the ‘keeper with her left boot. It was Larne’s game at the break.
The Larne girls certainly made the most of the headwinds in the first half but were up against the weather in the second half which allowed Bloomfield back into the game. However, they were only able to get two goals back and Larne would still get the last say in the game as Dee completed her hat-trick to round off an excellent performance for her personally.
POTM: Chloe Morrow
Larne v Crewe Boys
The first period was a very even affair between Larne and the Crumlin side, with Yasmin Aiston giving the Larne girls a narrow lead at half-time. In the second half, Yasmin added her second before Devone O’Toole also scored a double. Leah Lynas and Sophia Sanlon were solid at the back before two late goals for Crumlin. However, the game finished with a deserved victory for Larne.
POTM: Lacey Mitchell and Megan McLean