Wicklow: 6-10 Carlow: 3-8
Wicklow Minor Ladies took on Carlow in Tinahely in the Leinster Championship on Saturday February 28th 2015.
After a heavy defeat in the opening round against Meath the Wicklow girls needed a positive result in this encounter and Carlow, having beaten Longford in the opening round, were also determined to battle this one out. Both teams worked hard throughout the sixty minutes and this was a tough encounter with some very good periods for both sides. Carlow opened the scoring in the 3rd minute but a curling ball from Wicklow’s Clodagh Fox in the 4th forced the goalkeeper to step over the line in her attempt to control it and the goal was speedily awarded. Ciara Byrne quickly added a point for Wicklow and two goals from Molly Cullen and Katie Miley in the 7th and 10th minutes gave Wicklow a very solid lead. Further points from Miley, Cullen and Byrne left Carlow with an uphill battle to stem the tide. Points from Aoibhinn Gilmartin and Róisin Byrne brought Carlow’s tally to 5 and a goal in the 22nd minute reduced Wicklow’s lead to just five points. Wicklow had begun to allow Carlow to breach their defensive line and Carlow took full advantage with some excellent passing and well taken scores. Niamh O’Brien steadied the ship for Wicklow with a goal in the 27th minute and two further points from Ciara Byrne and Molly Cullen extended the Wicklow lead to ten points at half-time on a score line of 4-6 to 1-5.
Wicklow made a strong start to the second half with a well worked goal between Amy Ryan, Katie Miley and Molly Cullen in the opening minute. Carlow responded with three points from Aoibhinn Byrne and Róisín Byrne. There followed a scoreless spell for both teams until Clodagh Fox added a point for Wicklow in the 14th minute. Two quick goals from Róisín Byrne lifted Carlow spirits but there were instant replies from Niamh O’Brien, Annie Conroy and Eabha Barnes who all added points for Wicklow. Aoibhinn Byrne added a final point for Carlow in the closing minutes but a 28th minute goal for Ella Doran left Wicklow convincing winners on a closing score-line 6-10 to 3-8. Chloe Dwyer had a confident performance in the Wicklow goal and she was well supported by her backline of Shauna Byrne, Mary Healy, Laoise Marron, Annie Conroy, Jessica Byrne and Mayghan Doyle. Molly Cullen and Amy Ryan were very effective at mid-field and Aisling McDonald, Niamh O’Brien, Ciara Byrne, Lisa Lawlor, Katie Miley and Clodagh Fox made full use of any ball that came their way in the forward-line. Subs Sarah Kendrick, Aoife Grace, Ella Doran, Eabha Barnes and Jade Manley also contributed significantly to an all-round solid performance from the Wicklow girls. Best for Carlow were Aoibhinn Byrne, Antoinette Dowling, Mairéad O’Shea, Aoibhinn Gilmartin and RóisÍn Byrne.
The Wicklow management will be happy with this result as injury worries continue to plague the panel. The girls were due to face Kilkenny in the next round but as Kilkenny have pulled out of the competition their next encounter will be away to Louth on March 28th and finally at home to Longford on April 11th.
Wicklow: Chloe Dwyer, Shauna Byrne, Mary Healy, Laoise Marron, Annie Conroy (0-1), Jessica Byrne, Mayghan Doyle, Molly Cullen (2-1), Amy Ryan, Aisling McDonald, Niamh O’Brien (1-2), Ciara Byrne (0-2), Lisa Lawlor, Katie Miley (1-2), Clodagh Fox (1-1), Chelsea Snell, Ella Doran (1-0), Jade Manley, Sarah Kendrick, Eabha Barnes (0-1), Aoife Grace, Hannah Dowling, Alanna Conroy, Medb O’Kane, Amy Burke, Aimi Healy, Katie Bouchier.
Carlow: Shannon Cotter, Katie Mooney, Anne Roche, Ciara Nolan, Doirrean Walsh, Mairéad O’Shea, Gráinne Mulllins, Aoibhinn Byrne (0-2), Katie Byrne, Antoinette Dowling, RóisínByrne (2-4), Caoimhe Byrne, Leah Coffey, Nicole O’Hara, Eva Kealy, Grace Kelly, Aoibhinn Gilmartin (0-1), Ellen Atkinson, Orlagh Hickey, Tara Ryan, Katie Brennan, No. 22 (1-1) (not listed in programme).