Seconds still seek first win

Jason Goodison

Published 26/03/2016 | 00:00

Anna Whitty tries to evade Kilkenny's Catherine Walsh
Anna Whitty tries to evade Kilkenny's Catherine Walsh
Defender Nancy Dunphy clearing her lines as Aine Fahy looks on

Kilkenny got the better of neighbours Wexford in their Irish Daily Star National League Division 2 encounter in Piercestown on Sunday.

Kilkenny 2-10 Wexford 0-3

However, the Kittens were slightly flattered by the final scoreline after two late goals sealed their win.

With both sides setting up defensively, opting to take a player out of their full-forward line to employ a sweeper system, the game promised to be a relatively low-scoring one.

This promise held true, certainly for five-sixths of the game. Aine Fahy and Jenny Clifford opened the scoring for Kilkenny before Ellen Roche answered back for the home side in the twelfth minute.

Kilkenny, who registered eight first-half wides, failed to trouble Kerrie Daly between the sticks for the Model county but gradually picked off points through Keeva Fennelly, Marguerite Hoynes and Fahy to extend their lead to four points.

Again, Roche replied for Wexford, pointing well under pressure. Roche's 19th-minute point was the last before the interval, to which Kilkenny took a 0-5 to 0-2 lead.

Fahy added an early second-half point before the game was almost turned on its head. Wexford substitute Aideen Brennan intelligently found Deirdre McMahon whose shot at goal was well saved by Kirsty Maher.

Two minutes later the pair almost linked up again. This time a searching McMahon pass only needed the faintest touch by Brennan to be turned goalward.

Kilkenny, eager to make Wexford rue missed opportunities, attacked with a new sense of purpose. Catherine Walsh and Clifford added points before Fahy delivered the crushing blow in the 51st minute. Sarah Walsh found the dangerous forward who handpassed the ball into the net past Daly.

A second goal four minutes later removed any hope of a Wexford revival. Miriam Bambrick picked out Fahy whose shot deflected into the path of Noelle Maher and she prodded home.

At the other end of the pitch, Roche scored her third point but the Model county's race was finally run.

Maher added to her goal with a point while Fennelly notched her second score in injury time to earn Kilkenny a flattering 13-point win. Wexford will be hopeful of a different outcome next Sunday when they take on Carlow at home.

Wexford: Kerrie Daly; Nancy Dunphy, Shauna Redmond, Farren Byrne; Anna Whitty, Katie O'Connor (capt.), Michelle Harding; Niamh Walsh, Michelle Martin; Brídín Redmond, Ellen Roche (0-3, 1 free), Michelle Kehoe; Sarah Eustace, Deirdre McMahon, Amy Ryan. Subs. - Aideen Brennan for Kehoe (27), Kerri O'Brien for Harding (55), Aine Barron for Redmond (57), also Amy Eusatce, Ciara Mythen.

Kilkenny: Kirsty Maher; Eimear Corr, Jennifer Norris, Katie Nolan; Laura Greene, Aine Fahy (capt., 1-3, 0-3 frees), Ciara Murphy; Edel Frisby, Eilish Regan; Sarah Walsh, Keeva Fennelly (0-2), Catherine Walsh (0-1); Marguerite Hoynes (0-1), Angela Kenneally, Jenny Clifford (0-2). Subs. - Noelle Maher (1-1) for Hoynes (30), Edel Coonan for Kenneally (46), Miriam Bambrick for C.Walsh (54), Niamh Leahy for Frisby (56), Sabrina Walsh for Greene (57).

Referee: Ger Browne (Tipperary).

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