U16 camogie defeat against Rathnure

Hard luck to our U16 camogie girls who lost out to Rathnure on Wednesday evening last 4-6 to 2-5.

In their first game in the Wexford People Premier championship.  We lined out a very young team, essentially last year’s Under 14 side plus Shauna Kelly who was the only player up on the age, and they did well in the circumstances despite finishing up on the wrong side of the scoreline.

The most important thing to remember, it was a good, competitive affair throughout.  Teams will learn a lot more from being involved in the highest grade and our girls showed that they will be well able to hold their own at this level.  The scores were slow to arrive in the opening half when the wind was in our favour, with Zoe O’Leary opening our account from a fourth-minute free after Sarah Harding-Kenny was impeded.

Rathnure had got off the mark before that and then took the lead but our backs withstood a fierce onslaught of pressure midway through the half and did very well not to concede another score.  Full-back Sadbh McCarthy was especially prominent in that period while Larah Campbell also cleared a lot of balls from centre-half.

Jessie Harding got a lovely equalising point from a tight angle in the 19th minute and we improved generally after bringing full-forward Sarah Harding-Kenny out the field.  The lead was regained midway through the second quarter when Zoe O’Leary converted anther free and that’s how the score remained up to half-time (0-3 to 0-2).  We probably didn’t utilise the wings as often as we should have in that first half as a lot of deliveries went straight down the middle where Rathnure were strong.

The home side wasted little time in forging ahead on the re-start, picking off 2-2 in seven minutes with the points coming from placed balls.  However, Jessie Harding gave us hope when she blasted a penalty head-high to the net in the 40th minute after being fouled as she raced through (2-4 to 1-3). 

Unfortunately, the next score was a Rathnure goal that killed a lot of our momentum.  Nonetheless, points from Zoe O’Leary (free) and Sarah Harding-Kenny kept us in the hunt, but the black and ambers were a little too strong overall and struck 1-2 in less than three minutes to make the game safe.  To their great credit our girls kept battling and this will have pleased mentors John Harding (Manager), Mary O’Leary and Mick Lanigan.

That persistance was rewarded when Mikaela Lanigan scored a late consolation goal which left the final score as a fairer reflection of proceedings (4-6 to 2-5).  A warm welcome from the club to our newest recruit, Cody Brennan, who made her competitive debut in the last ten minutes.

Team as follows:  Ailis Neville, Chloe Mythen, Sadbh McCarthy, Caitlin Malone, Anna Whelan, Larah Campbell, Megan Scallan, Zoe O’Leary (0-3 frees), Shauna Kelly, Eleanor Lacey, Jessie Harding (1-1, 1-0 pen), Fiona Kinsella, Julia Halpin, Sarah Harding-Kenny (0-1), Mikaela Lanigan (1-0).  Subs;  Lauren Murphy for Lacey(49), Cody Brennan for Halpin (49), Caitlin Carroll for Malone (55).