No joy in replay
Intermediate side beaten by Kilkenny
Wexford's missed opportunity in the first game proved costly as they lost their Leinster Intermediate camogie championship semi-final replay to Kilkenny in O'Kennedy Park on Sunday.
Kilkenny 4-6 Wexford 2-7
The Slaneysiders changed their gameplan for the visit of the Noresiders, dropping the sweeper system that has served them well in recent matches, and it backfired as Kilkenny advanced to the title decider with a bit to spare.
Leading by 3-3 to 0-5 at half-time, Kilkenny all but had the game won at the interval and added another 1-5 after the resumption to see off their neighbours by a comfortable seven points.
A Kelly Ann Doyle goal helped Kilkenny into a 1-2 to nil lead but Wexford hit back with a Sarah O'Connor '45. An Ellen Kelly point had further narrowed the gap, only for Doyle to get her second and third goals to complete her hat-tick inside 22 minutes (3-2 to 0-2).
Wexford pulled back three points from O'Connor and Kelly (two), but with Laura Norris on target before the interval the Kittens still held a comfortable lead at the change-around.
Kilkenny began the second-half like a team that knew they were heading to the final and pointed through Doyle (two) and Sarah Ann Quinlan. The hosts got a goal back when Kelly picked out Deirdre McMahon and she found the netting in the 44th minute.
Marie Morrissey made the score 3-6 to 1-6 with a point before Doyle pointed and Quinlan goaled to end any potential fightback. O'Connor did drill a free to the net six minutes from time, and Kelly added another point but it was Kilkenny's day.
Wexford will hope to re-group and look ahead to the All-Ireland championship that they will start with home ties against Down (July 4) and Galway before travelling to Cork and Meath.
Wexford: Geraldine Curtis; Nancy Dunphy, Farren Byrne, Aisling O'Connor; Brídín Doyle, Sarah O'Connor (1-2, 0-1 '45, 0-1 free), Marie Claire Morrissey; Louise Sinnott, Louise Stafford; Ellen Roche, Deirdre McMahon (1-0), Michelle Martin; Marie Morrissey (0-1), Ellen Kelly (0-4, 2 frees), Shauna Kelly. Subs. - Anna Whitty for L. Stafford, Clodagh Fitzhenry for S. Kelly.
Kilkenny: Noelle Murphy; Ruth Jones, Brigid Grennan, Therese Muldowney; Ciara Farrell, Rebecca Cleere, Edel Frisby; Sarah Crowley, Kelly Ann Doyle (3-4, 1-0 pen.); Emma Comerford, Sarah Ann Quinlan (1-2, 0-2 frees), Laura Norris (0-1); Sarah Walsh, Aisling Butler, Jenny Clifford (0-1).
Referee: Pat Kehoe (Carlow).
Wexford 0-9, Kilkenny 1-6: Wexford had come within a few seconds of pulling off a bit of a shock against Kilkenny the previous week in Thomastown.
The Slaneysiders were leading by a point heading into added time but were undone by a raised white flag from substitute Emma Comerford that forced a draw and meant the semi-final was destined for a replay.
Wexford led out of the blocks, with frees from Ellen Kelly and Sarah O'Connor putting the visitors ahead. Sarah Ann Quinlan and Ellen Roche traded points before Niamh Bambrick cut the gap to 0-3 to 0-2 midway through the second quarter.
The visitors, playing with the breeze, finished the half stronger and three points on the bounce from Clodagh Fitzgerald, Sarah O'Connor and Roche gave their side a four-point interval advantage (0-6 to 0-2).
Wexford kept Kilkenny at bay in the third quarter and added another O'Connor dead ball. However, as the game wore on the hosts began to register with more frequency with a brace from Quinlan making it 0-7 to 0-4.
Fitzhenry further increased Wexford's lead with seven minutes remaining but Quinlan added a quick 1-1 and out of nowhere the game was level. An O'Connor free sent Tom Dunphy's team into added time ahead but there was still time for Comerford to find the equaliser and force a replay.
Wexford: Geraldine Curtis; Nancy Dunphy, Farren Byrne, Aisling O'Connor (capt.); Brídín Doyle, Sarah O'Connor (0-4 frees), Marie Claire Morrissey; Louise Sinnott, Louise Stafford; Ellen Roche (0-2), Deirdre McMahon, Clodagh Fitzhenry (0-2); Marie Morrissey, Ellen Kelly (0-1 free), Amy Ryan. Subs. - Laura Dempsey, Shauna Kelly, Nessa Wickham, Olivia Lambert, Victoria Burke, Aisling Higgins, Michelle Martin, Eadaoin Howlin, Anna Whitty, Katie Lillis, Louise Hore.
Kilkenny: Noelle Murphy; Vivienne Forristal, Michaela Kenneally, Miriam Bambrick; Ruth Jones, Rebecca Cleere, Edel Frisby; Sarah Crowley, Laura Norris (capt.); Aisling Butler, Sarah Ann Quinlan (1-4, 0-3 frees), Claire Aylward; Niamh Bambrick (0-1), Sarah Walsh, Jenny Clifford. Subs. - Ann Marie Lennon, Laura Hegarty, Emma Comerford (0-1), Marguerite Hoynes, Brigid Grennan, Ailish Butler, Sonia Buggy, Maggie Simpson.
Referee: Ray Kelly (Kildare).