National Ladies Football League Division 2B Round 1
Clare 0-12 Wexford 1-8
CLARE got their League campaign off to a winning start in Cusack Park, rallying against a formidable Wexford side to come from behind in the second half to snatch the win by a single point, reports Muireann Duffy.
Clare had a commanding start to the opening half, taking the challenge to Wexford who took longer to find their feet.
A direct attacking style suited the homeside, who made easy work of cutting straight through Wexford’s defence, but the roles would be reversed in the second half.
Fidelma Marrinan caused an early headache for Paul Carty’s side, proving a strong attacking threat and pointing two frees in the opening 10 minutes, but unforced Clare errors at the other end of the pitch quickly gave Wexford their way into the match.
Claiming four points from frees, Wexford put themselves ahead in the 13th minute despite Clare playing the better football.
However, capitalising on their 0-2 to 0-4 lead at the first half water break, Wexford did not make the same mistake of starting slow following the restart, asserting themselves from the word go and putting Clare firmly on the back foot.
A strong push from the Banner in the closing stages of the half, aided by two excellent points by Kilmurry Ibrickane’s Ciara McCarthy left them chasing by one point at half time.
Taking a leaf from Clare’s book in the second half, Wexford’s attack found their rhythm along the wings, but luckily for Evan Talty’s side, struggled with their accuracy.
A goal from a penalty in the 35th minute for Amy Wilson gave Wexford a four point lead, the largest margin of the day, but two further points from McCarthy pulled it back to 0-8 to 1-7 at the second half water break.
After the restart, a great pass in from substitute Chloe Moloney again found clubmate McCarthy to reduce the deficit to one with less than 10 minutes to play.
With the side’s pulling level with only one minute left on the clock, a draw seemed like a fair result, but an outstanding point from Marrinan in Clare’s moment of need got the Banner out in front for the first time in the second half.
Holding possession to see out the final seconds, the Banner breathed a sigh of relief come the final whistle, getting the win despite a ferocious Wexford effort.
Clare: Micaela Glynn (Kilmihil); Ellie O’Gorman (Kilmihil), Siofra Ní Chonaill (Doora Barefield), Orla Devitt (Eire Óg), Roisin Considine (Liscannor), Tara Kelly (Cúil Gaels), Caoimhe Harvey (West Clare Gaels) (Captain), Roisin Looney (Cooraclare), Aisling Reidy (Doora Barefield), Áine Keane (St Joseph’s Miltown Malbay), Ciara McCarthy (Kilmurry Ibrickane), Sinead Considine (Liscannor), Cliodhna Blake (Doonbeg), Fidelma Marrinan (West Clare Gaels), Laura Griffey (Burren Gaels).
Subs: Chloe Moloney (Kilmurry Ibrickane) for Griffey (HT), Grainne Nolan (Banner) for Keane (47), Carol O’Leary (NOF) for S Considine (58), Lizzy Roche (Burren Gaels) for Blake (58)
Scorers: Fidelma Marrinan (0-4, 2f), Caoimhe Harvey (0-1), Ciara McCarthy (0-6, 3f), Chloe Moloney (0-1)
Wexford: Katie Sludds; Emma Cousins, Aisling Halligan, Loren Doyle, Shauna Murphy, Roisin Murphy (Captain), Kellie Kearney, Clara Donelly, Ciara Banville, Derbhla Doyle, Caitriona Murray, Sherene Hamilton, Amy Wilson, Aoife Cullen, Ailis Neville.
Subs: Jane Rossiter for Doyle (HT), Rachel Bennett for Cullen (38), Juliet Rochford for Murphy (50), Niamh Moore for Cousins (50)
Scorers: Amy Wilson (1-5, 5f, 1 pen), Emma Cousins (0-1), Caitriona Murray (0-2, 1f)
Referee: Shane Curley (Galway)