Dynamic duo power Kilrush
Victory in twelve-a-side final
KILRUSH BUFFERS ALLEY
DRIVEN ON by the dynamic duo of Lorna Fortune and Emma Tomkins, Kilrush powered past Buffers Alley to the Minor camogie Roinn 2A twelve-a-side title in Monageer on Monday of last week.
Naturally, there were more than two reasons for this success. The defence was magnificent, the attack kept their opponents off balance throughout, and Rachel Kavanagh was an unsung defensive foil in midfield.
However, it was the class in possession and direct running ability of Fortune and Tomkins that turned a close game at half-time (1-3 to 0-4) into a contest that Kilrush never looked like surrendering.
Not that Buffers Alley didn’t have their chances. On the short pitch with the small goals there is a premium on good shot selection, yet the Monamolin side were constantly under pressure from a sticky set of defenders and it resulted in 19 wides being swatted.
Ten of those were in the first-half when the Alley were playing up the hill. There was a balance to the game in this period and Kilrush would probably have considered themselves a little fortunate to take a two-point lead in at the interval.
Scores from Amy Mitten (two), Sadbh Doyle and Sinéad Furlong helped their side into a 0-4 to 0-2 lead after 19 minutes.
However, Fortune dragged her side within one before she raced away on the right of goal and fired past Fiona Cousins.
Playing down the hill after the break, Buffers Alley tested ‘keeper Lisa Fortune with an array of balls into the goalmouth. What they found was a talented shot-stopper, someone whose composure put her whole defence at ease.
Fortune raced away from one of her long puck-outs to net in the 36th minute, but Saoirse O’Connor handpassed home a major response moments later.
When Kavanagh sent Tomkins away in the 41st minute, she fired to the net to make it 3-4 to 1-6.
The goal lifted Kilrush and soon Naoise Hennessy sprinted clear on the left and smashed home.
When Eilish O’Rourke popped over a classy point in the 57th minute, her side had built a 4-8 to 1-7 lead.
Buffers Alley refused to throw in the towel and Marina Mordaunt did beat Lisa Fortune after her initial shot was saved.
Fittingly it was Kilrush who had the last say, as Hennessy pulled home for her second goal and Lorna Fortune put the seal on a successful season with an injury-time free.
Kilrush: Lisa Fortune (joint capt.); Emer Fitzgerald, Maura O’Rourke (joint capt.); Jenny Doran, Eilish O’Rourke (0-1); Rachel Kavanagh, Lorna Fortune (2-5, 0-1 free), Emma Tomkins (1-3); Meg Donnelly, Hermione Murphy; Chelsea Sunderland, Naoise Hennessy (2-0). Subs. - Mary Claire McCrea for Fitzgerald, inj. (24), Sarah Kenny for Sunderland (39), Áine Doran for Donnelly (53), also Edana Mimnagh, Orla Byrne, Orla Fitzgerald, Leona Kenny.
Buffers Alley: Fiona Cousins; Becky Kavanagh (joint capt.), Andrea Kinsella; Aoife Whelan (joint capt.), Eleanor Hammel; Saoirse O’Connor (1-0), Sinéad Furlong (0-2, 1 free), Marina Mordaunt (1-0); Sadbh Doyle (0-2), Sarah Mordaunt; Amy Mitten (0-3), Beibinn O’Brien. Subs. - Amy Costello for S. Mordaunt (51), Orna Corrigan for Hammel (60+1), also Eimear Kavanagh, Gráinne DempseyDoyle, Rose McCarthy, Lauren Murphy, Nessa Níc Corcráin.
Referee: Aidan Breen (Marshalstown-Castledockrell).
The victorious Kilrush team.
The runners-up from Buffers Alley.
Maura O’Rourke of Kilrush under pressure from Amy Mitten.