DESPITE the deplorable underfoot conditions, Mullinavat proved too strong for Thomastown as they booked their place in the senior camogie championship final.
Goals as they say win matches, and truthfully despite Thomastown’s best attempt, they were facing a stiff uphill climb after just 20 minutes in Kilmacow on Saturday evening.
Shelly Farrell opened the scoring for Thomastown, but they were rocked back seconds later.
A booming free from Elaine Aylward caused problems for the Thomastown backs, while slack defending saw Michelle Quilty pounce quickest to finish from close range.
Goal number two arrived in the tenth minute, when Angela Kenneally’s inch perfect delivery saw the Thomastown defence way out of position and Leanne Fennelly found herself in acres of space.
Her initial shot was well saved by Grace Clarke, but Fennelly managed to get the faintest of touches to sidefoot the sliotar over the goal-line (2-1 to 0-2).
The winners shot five more points as they led 2-6 to 0-4 at the interval. Quilty was on fire, scoring 1-3 during the opening half.
In a low-scoring second half Mullinavat were always in control. Even though conditions deteriorated, they outscored their opponents (0-4 to 0-2), a run that included three points in the last ten minutes.
Scores from Quilty (2) and a point each from Amy Butler and Rebecca Haberlin confirmed Mullinavat’s overall superior dominance. Back to their best form, they gave a clear sign that they mean business as they attempt to retain the Senior title.
Defensively they were in control led by the superb Aylward sisters, Elaine and Sinead. Tactically, they got it spot during the second half.
The midfield duo of Amy Butler and Aine Kinsella did relentless work operating as extra defenders, while the half-forward line of the Angela Kenneally, Julie-Anne Malone and Miriam Frisby along with Leanne Fennelly dropped back to midfield, where they grafted to overpower Thomastown in the middle sector.
Thomastown will be disappointed following their league success, but they had the best player on view in Megan Farrell who shone above the rest in an awesome individual display.
Sarah Walsh and goalkeeper Grace Clarke did well, but their problems lay further afield as they hit just 0-2 from play. Despite the best attempts of point scorers Shelly Farrell in the second half and Niamh Donnelly, Mullinavat’s experience proved too strong for Thomastown to bear.
SCORERS: Mullinavat - Michelle Quilty (1-6, 0-3 frees); Leanne Fennelly (1-0); Julie-Anne Malone, Angela Kenneally, Amy Butler, Rebecca Haberlin (0-1 each). Thomastown - Anna Farrell (0-4, 0-3 frees, 0-1 45); Shelly Farrell, Niamh Donnelly (0-1 each).