Intermediates out of running
Third loss on trot proves fatal
Wexford are out of contention for a semi-final place in the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Intermediate camogie championship after falling to Laois in Innovate Wexford Park on Saturday.
Laois 2-12 Wexford 1-8
Having lost their opening two ties against Tipperary and Antrim, the Slaneysiders had very little chance of progression anyway, but that didn't prevent them from giving a decent account of themselves for three-quarters of this tie.
Tom Dunphy's side played with the breeze in the first period and made use of it in the early stages. Joanne Dillon's rocket, from Oonagh Doyle's pass, was saved over the bar by Laura Dunne in the third minute, a score that was followed by a successful Aideen Brennan free.
Louise Mahony got Laois on the scoreboard but Wexford were in the ascendancy. When Ellen Roche's ball into the goalmouth broke off Margaret Byrne into the path of Dillon, the Rathgarogue-Cushinstown clubwoman made space for the shot and rattled the Laois net.
Moments later Dillon saw her shot saved after Byrne's block. Brennan knocked over her second free but back came the visitors with their opening goal when Elizabeth Ryan added the finishing touches to a slalom run from Sarah Ann Fitzgerald.
Points from Brennan and Dillon left Wexford 1-5 to 1-1 clear after 17 minutes, but they would only manage three more in the remainder of the contest. Meanwhile, after two quick points narrowed the gap, Joan Dollard found the net from Niamh Dollard's handpass.
A pair of Brennan dead-balls gave the hosts a 1-7 to 2-3 interval lead, but Sarah Ann Fitzgerald quickly levelled after the re-start. Margaret Byrne cut in and tapped over Wexford's final point in the 35th minute.
Still, it wasn't easy for Laois. Fitzgerald's third and fourth points ensured they led going into the final ten minutes (2-6 to 1-8). Another from the full-forward, and a Niamh Dollard point, gave the visitors a goal lead with seven minutes left.
When Byrne flashed a shot wide right in the 54th minute the game was up for Wexford, and four late points gave Laois breathing space. Wexford play their final game of the season at home to Kilkenny on Saturday week.
Wexford: Jemma Doyle; Nancy Dunphy, Farren Byrne, Leanne Foley; Michelle Harding, Rachel Kelly, Michelle Martin; Leah Walsh, Ellen Roche; Oonagh Doyle, Deridre McMahon (capt.), Aoife Curran; Aideen Brennan (0-5, 4 frees), Joanne Dillon (1-2), Margaret Byrne (0-1). Subs. - Brídín Redmond for Curran (48), also Rebecca Doran, Anna Whitty, Amy Ryan, Shauna Kelly, Leanne Foley, Niamh Walsh, Katie O'Connor, Michelle Kehoe, Clodagh Jackman, Derbhla Doyle, Shauna Redmond, Amy Eustace, Sarah Eustace, Ciara Mythen.
Laois: Laura Dunne; Aisling Burke, Mairéad Burke, Aoife Hyland; Olga Parkinson (capt.), Elaine Mahony, Margaret Hogan; Síle Burke, Róisín Kilmartin; Niamh Dollard (0-1), Louise Mahony (0-2), Joan Dollard (1-0); Elizabeth Ryan (1-2), Sarah Ann Fitzgerald (0-7, 3 frees), Sarah Bergin. Subs. - Sarah Creagh for Hogan (47), Aoife Burke for J. Dollard (47), Aisling O'Dea for Kilmartin (53).
Referee: John Darmody (Westmeath).