Limerick 3-11 Cork 1-9
All-Ireland Minor A Championship Final Replay
Saturday 3rd May 2.30pm in Charleville
Limerick produced a dominant second-half effort to win the All-Ireland Minor A Camogie title for the first time in the replay at Charleville on Sunday. The title is also Limerick's first Camogie title of any sort at the top grade and Limerick's first top grade title in any Gaelic code since the U21 hurlers in 2002.
Willie Banks and his team made a few late positional and personnel switches to counteract the Cork attacking threat that did so much damage in the drawn game. This seemed to have the desired impact as despite playing into a strong breeze, blowing from the graveyard end of the Charleville pitch, Limerick opened up a 0-3 to 0-1 lead with points from Caoimhe Costelloe, Aoife Wilson and Caoimhe Lyons.
But Cork had a goal threat and, after an excellent save from Laura O’Neill, last week’s hat-trick hero Kate O’Keeffe pounced on the rebound to grab a goal edging Cork in front.
Limerick went back in front when Caoimhe Costelloe goaled after an excellent move involving Caoimhe Lyons and Kate Mulqueen. Cork leveled again with the next score and with the wind playing havoc with Limerick’s accuracy from the placed ball it was Cork who opened up a lead in the last five minutes when Hannah Looney, Joanne O’Keeffe, Aisling Wallace and Kate O’Keeffe all found the target from play to give the Rebels a 1-8 to 1-4 half-time lead.
Limerick re-emerged early from the dressing room and the management had them running drills while they waited for Cork to emerge. Limerick then came out of the blocks flying and were level by the 42nd minute, thanks to two points from Caoimhe Costelloe and one each from Leah O’Riordan and Kate Mulqueen.
Caoimhe Costelloe followed up with two pointed frees to put Limerick ahead before Cork finally got their first (and only) score of the second half, from a Rachel O’Shea free which followed their first period of pressure on the Limerick goal in the half.
Though the gap was only a single point Limerick were well in control and, with Karen O’Leary and Rebecca Delee exerting control around the middle, Cork’s dynamic forwards were starved of possession in the second half.
Limerick made sure of their win by scoring two goals in the last five minutes. Rebecca Delee dropped a long range effort short and Caoimhe Costelloe pounced on the loose ball for the first goal and Aoife Wilson found Caoimhe Lyons inside who kicked into the net for the score that sealed the win. Cork had a late penalty but it was too little too late and when it was saved Limerick broke to the other end of the pitch and appropriately player of the match (and birthday girl) Karen O’Leary got the final score with a well taken point.
Whereas the goals were decisive the defence also stood out, with Donna Mulcahy and Jane Wilson prominent in the half-back line, and it was their endeavours against the wind in the opening period and again in the closing minutes that laid the groundwork for Limerick’s historic victory.
SCORERS FOR LIMERICK: Caoimhe Costelloe 2-6 (0-4fs); Caoimhe Lyons 1-1; Aoife Wilson, Karen O’Leary, Kate Mulqueen, Leah O’Riordan 0-1 each.
SCORERS FOR CORK: Rachel O’Shea 0-5(4fs); Kate O’Keeffe 1-2; Hannah Looney, Aisling Wallace 0-1 each.
1 Laura O'Neill (Na Piarsaigh), 2.Katie Hennessy (Ballyagran), 3. Sinead MacNamara (Na Piarsaigh), 13. Leanne Browne (Newcastle West), 5. Jane Wilson (Na Piarsaigh), 7. Tara Fitzgibbon (Ballyagran), 8. Donna Mulcahy (Killeedy), 6. Rebecca Delee (Newcastle West), 9. Karen O'Leary (Newcastle West), 10. Deborah Murphy (Knockaderry), 12. Aoife Wilson (Adare), 19. Leah O'Riordan (Ballyagran), 14. Kate Mulqueen (Ballybrown), 11. Caoimhe Costelloe - Captain (Adare), 15. Caoimhe Lyons (Monaleen)
Panel: Shannyn Sheehan (Templeglantine), Orla Condon (Knockaderry) , Sara Shanahan (Killeedy), Helena Fitzgerald (Adare), Aisling Scanlon (Killeedy), Niamh Tuite (Treaty Gaels), Ellanah Mulcahy (Killeedy), Marion Quaid (Bruff), Marie Danagher (Ballyagran), Mairead Clancy (Ballybrown), Lisa Ryan (Murroe Boher), Shauna Tobin (Newcastle West), Aoife Barry (Murroe Boher), Neamh Curtin (Ballybrown), Kiara Carroll (Newcastle West), Megan O'Meara (Monaleen), Aine Cunningham (Killeedy), Roisin O'Meara (Ahane), Sinead Madden (Mungret), Lizzie O'Dwyer (Cappamore)
Mentors: Willie Banks (Manager), Adrian O'Sullivan, Rose McMahon (Trainer/Selector), Liz Hennessy (Liaison), Sara Fitzgerald (Physio), Margaret Delee (First Aid)