Emphatic Windgap retain title

Michael O’Leary

Michael O’Leary

Windgap 3-8

Dicksboro 1-5

WINDGAP finished their year in style, scoring 1-3 in the last five minutes as they saw off the Dicksboro challenge and retained their minor Roinn A camogie crown.

The game - moved to Palmerstown due to the inclement weather - was in the balance right up to those stirring final minutes.

Dicksboro spurned a glorious goal chance to draw level (2-5 to 1-5) in 51st minute when Sonya Buggy found herself in front of goal after breaking free from the Windgap defence. However, her goal-bound hand-pass was brilliantly stopped by Windgap goalkeeper Laura Walker.

Windgap effectively sealed victory with a 55th minute goal following forceful pressure from the persistence of substitute Katie Dunphy and the trojan working Fiona Walsh. The two combined along with Michaela Kenneally, who let fly with a rasping shot from tricky angle for the game-clinching score (3-5 to 1-5).

Niamh Phelan added three late points including two frees as Windgap cruised to victory in the end.

Whirlwind start

The winners made a whirlwind start and they were already a goal up inside 40 seconds.

Niamh Phelan stood up to a free, and her shot caused havoc with the blinding sunshine for Dicksboro goalkeeper Aoife Prendergast. The sliotar crept under the bar. Windgap were off and running.

Orla Hanrick pointed a free to open Dicksboro’s account, but the city girls squandered two goal chances in the first ten minutes. Louise Kenny and Ciara Tyrrell combined but were denied by last ditch defending, while Eva Maher’s ninth minute shot hit the side netting.

Not long after Niamh Phelan pointed a free, Laura Moore plundered a well-taken goal to put Windgap in the driving seat (2-1 to 0-1).

Hanrick (free) and Laura Moore exchanged points as the sides continued to search for big scores. Eva Maher blazed the sliotar inches over the crossbar with the goal at her mercy in the 18th minute, before Michaela Kenneally blasted the ball over the crossbar when in front of goal.

Dicksboro were given a lifeline in the 27th minute when Orla Hanrick’s free attempt ended up in the net. However, Michaela Kenneally concluded the first half scoring with a point to stretch Windgap’s lead to four points (2-4 to 1-3) at half-time.

Scores were more difficult to come by in the second half, with just three points on the board by the 54th minute. However, that all changed as Windgap pulled out all the stops in those final frenetic minutes to retain their title.

Windgap - Laura Walker, Aisling Cody, Claire Grace (captain), Gemma Long, Eimear Moylan, Catherine Foley, Ciara Molloy, Suzie Dunphy (0-1), Niamh Bambrick, Niamh Phelan (1-4, 1-3 frees), Laura Moore (1-1), Fiona Walsh, Leanne O’Neill, Michaela Kenneally (1-2), Amanda Power. Subs: Katie Dunphy, Sarah Grace,

Dicksboro - Aoife Prendergast, Rebecca Knox, Niamh O’Connor, Claire Nolan, Danielle Kenny, Alex Horan (captain), Nicola Tynan, Lucy Sherwin, Sonia Buggy, Rachel Lynch, Orla Hanrick (1-4, frees), Louise Kenny, Niamh Brown, Eva Maher (0-1), Ciara Tyrrell.

Referee - Pat Hayes (Graigue-Ballycallan).