Experience proves key as Wexford grab win
by PRO on the 20th of May 2021
The Kilkenny Intermediate team travelled to Enniscorthy for the opening round of the Division 2 camogie league on Saturday.
Led by Captain Roisin Phelan, Kilkenny were aware of the fierce opposition they were going to encounter. Wexford, who compete in the Division 1 championship proved to be the most experienced of the two sides on the day.
From the throw in you could see their movement was second to none, they were eager and back with a point to prove.
With a powerful wind behind them they quickly gathered the ball worked it into the centre forward Joanne Dillon who split the posts for the opening score of the day.
Moments later saw Therese Donnelly awarded a free due to a late challenge by a Wexford defender. Sophie O’ Dwyer, whose free taking abilities proved instrumental for Kilkenny throughout the game, made no mistake of getting herself on the score board for Kilkenny’s first score.
It was a good response from Kilkenny, but Wexford seemed to be first to every ball. Their tenacious efforts in the rooks saw them awarded a free just in front of their own 45. Wing back Emma Walsh lobbed the ball high into the full forward line.
There was nothing Sinead Farrell the Kilkenny keeper could do as the ball skidded awkwardly on the Astroturf at the mouth of the goal and it zipped to the back of the net.
Wexford seemed to gather momentum and added 4 more points to the score board. While just one score by Aisling Curtis from play was all Kilkenny could seem to muster as they saw themselves trail 0-2 to 1-6 at the first water break.
Kilkenny started to find their stride in the second quarter. Ciara Murphy’s dogged display at corner back teamed with Roisin Phelan’s composure at full back saw Kilkenny begin to break down the Wexford efforts.
However, the Wexford sweeper was causing huge problems for the Kilkenny attack. Full forward Sarah Crowley was forced out towards midfield in search of the ball. Her efforts were not in vain. She was awarded 2 frees in quick concession that O’ Dwyer glided over with ease.
O’ Dwyer added one more point from play to her tally. But with 5 out of the 6 Wexford forwards now on the scoreboard Kilkenny were down 0-5 to 1-10 at the half time.
The wind seemed to die down considerably in the second half, but two Kilkenny substitutions 5 minutes in proved influential for Kilkenny.
Laura Greene’s efforts around the centre of the field saw Kilkenny gain most of the possession throughout the third quarter. Her pressure on the Wexford midfield resulted in a free for over carrying which O’ Dwyer once again slotted between the posts, while Ciara Phelan’s aggression saw Kilkenny start to win more possession from their own puck out.
Anais Curran was the only Wexford forward yet to get her name on the score board and she really found her own in the 3rd quarter when the rest of the Wexford forwards seemed to be under too much pressure from the Kilkenny defence. Two phenomenal points from play ensured the Wexford scoreboard remained ticking over, but another free from Sophie O’ Dwyer and a long range shot from Hannah Scott saw Kilkenny outscore Wexford for the first time. (0-3, 0-2)
Ciara Murphy continued to impress for the visitors. She burst out through the Kilkenny defence and a strong challenge on her own 45 saw her awarded a free. Aoife Prendergast stood up, this sharpshooter launching the ball with ease over the black spot, this would to be her first of four frees scored on own half backline in the final quarter. The accuracy and ferociousness of her strike was a huge talking point in the game.
Eva Hynes added to Prendergast’s tally with a point from play and one from a free. However Wexford proved far too strong for Kilkenny. Substitute Aoife O’ Connor was instrumental for Wexford slotting over 3 points and ensuring a Wexford victory.
A lot will be gained from the match, which was a thrilling opening match for the division 2 league. Wexford’s experience was evident on the field and the challenge will prove vital for Kilkenny going into their match against Laois on Saturday
Kilkenny scorers: Sophie O’ Dwyer (0-6) 4 frees, Aoife Prendergast (0-4f), Eva Hynes (0-2) 1 free, Hannah Scott, Aisling Curtis 0-1 each
Wexford scorers: Kate Kirwan (0-4), Ellen Rocher (0-3f), Anais Curran (0-3), Aoife O’ Connor (0-3) 1 free, Emma Walsh (1-0f), Joanne Dillon (0-2), Roisin Kelly (0-2), Aoife Guiney (0-1).
Kilkenny Team: Sinead Farrell, Ciara Murphy, Roisin Phelan (Capt.), Niamh Sweeney, Aine Phelan, Leann Fennelly, Aoife Prendergast, Aisling Curtis, Ciara O’Keeffe, Eva Hynes, Hannah Scott, Danielle Quigley, Sophie O’Dwyer, Sarah Crowley, Therese Donnelly.
Subs: Laura Greene for O’Keeffe, Ciara Phelan for A. Phelan, Shauna Treacy for O’ Dwyer, Jane Cass for Sweeney
Wexford – Laura Brennan, Louise O’Leary, Aine Lacey, Laura Dempsey, Katie O’Connor, Sarah O’Connor, Emma Walsh, Ciara O’Connor, Linda Bolger, Anais Curran, Jackie Quigley, Kate Kirwan, Mag Byrne, Joanne Dillon, Roisin Kelly
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