In a thrilling under 16 ‘A’ County camogie final, Toomevara and Cahir served up just about everything that is good in camogie at this level in a very entertaining game that took place in the Ragg, with Cahir winning 0-16 to 2-6
A minute’s silence was observed for the father of Kieran Slattery, Juvenile Secretary, who died suddenly earlier that day.
Cahir had the edge over their opponents from the beginning and had that little more balance over the pitch too as well as more fuel in their tanks. Both sides had a nervous start and the strong wind that blew into the Thurles corner of the pitch, didn’t help matters either as Cahir drove three wides before their ace free taker Ashling Moloney found the target seven minutes into action. Adding a second within the minute, Toomevara replied in the tenth minute thanks to Gillian McKenna’s accuracy from placed ball. Underfoot conditions were poor from the earlier rain but Cahir converted a further three, Aoife Corcoran, an Ashling Moloney free and Ashling McCarthy’s great point from long range, over the remainder of the quarter while Nicole Sheppard kept the Toomevara flag flying.
Cahir was far more confident in possession and drove on, keeping Toomevara well away from the goalmouth and while Aishling Moloney picked off another three points from placed ball, she also was finding it difficult at times to find the target so strong was the breeze as it played havoc with the ball. The industrious Roisin Howard also got in on the scoring act before Marguerite Young and Cliodhna Ryan helped Gillian McKenna keep Toomevara in contact.
Trailing by six points at the break, Toomevara struck like a thunderbolt and denied Cahir’s attack as they pushed hard for an early resumption goal. Toomevara worked the ball downfield where Gillian McKenna crossed to Marguerite Young and she pulled low giving Keely Halpin not a ghost of a chance between the Cahir uprights. Digging deep, Toomevara found form and Gillian McKenna fired over her third point, this one from a free and within 30 seconds later, Cliodhna Ryan had the deficit reduced to one.
The large crowd of spectators were vocal in support for their respective teams as Ashling Moloney brought Cahir back up to two. Marking was so tight that fouls were committed on both sides, and the ball was up and down the field with some great displays of defending on both ends before Cliodhna Ryan left one separating the sides again.
Cahir couldn’t get past the Toomevara watertight back line and Ashling Moloney who was having a great game, split the uprights and as the breeze strengthened, Moloney put three between them. After beating the Toomevara mid fielders on the puck out, Aishling McCarthy added the insurance point and the frustration from their opponents who just couldn’t handle the Cahir attacking force, was evident.
Aishling Moloney struck a further two for Cahir but a great late attack from Julieanne Burke, Aideen Hogan, Gillian McKenna and Nicole Sheppard who was fouled, saw Hogan drop the free in the square where Chloe Connolly caught and blasted but it was too little too late as Cahir’s Aishling Moloney tapped over the last puck of the game and to see her side crowned worthy champions.
Cahir’s management team can take great credit for their side’s great second half defending as they rose to the challenge when Toomevara pulled out all the stops in a great effort to send Cahir off course, which failed to work for them as the Southern club bathed in victory.
Scorers: Cahir: Aishling Moloney 0.11f, Aishling McCarthy 0.3, Roisin Howard, Aoife Corcoran 0.1 each.
Cahir: Keely Halpin, Ellen English, Emma Buckley (Captain), Caral Casey, Aishling Moloney, Roisin Costigan, Clara O’Donnell, Aishling McCarthy, Grainne Quirke, Caoimhe Condon, Roisin Howard, Aoife Corcoran, Joyce Arbuckle, Roisin O’Donnell, Eadaoin O’Gorman.
Subs: Eileen Flannery for E. O’Gorman, Maureen Murphy for Ellen English, Clare Doyle for J. Arbuckle.