Late Raheny equaliser denies Youths valuable three points
WITH RESULTS as they were in Castlebar and in Ferrycarrig, Peamount United looked set to be crowned champions until Mary Waldron snatched a late equaliser for Raheny to ensure that the race for the title goes to the final day.
Wexford and Raheny had produced two very close games in their previous encounters and this game in Ferrycarrig was no exception as both sides were eager to grab all three points for different reasons. Raheny needed to win to keep the pressure on leaders Peamount while Wexford are very keen to finish off the season in third place.
After being crowned player of the month last Wednesday, Cherelle Khessal showed why she picked up that award as she hassled the visitors' defence from the start and on five minutes she got on the end of a Linda Douglas through ball but was unable to find sufficient strength in her shot to trouble Lynn Bradley in goal. She had a tough job playing up front alone but she covered every blade of grass on a pristine Ferrycarrig pitch but found herself well marshalled by Shauna Newman and Seana Cooke and her shots on target were kept to a minimum.
At the other end, Mary Waldron, Rebecca Creagh and Ciara Grant were all causing the Wexford defence some problems but the home side showed calmness under pressure and dealt with the visitor's attempts to trouble keeper Charlotte Mccormack. With ten minutes to go, a through ball from Edel Kennedy put Cherelle Khessal through for the best chance of the first half but Lynn Bradley stood up well to the effort. Minutes later, Mary Waldron broke through but Charlotte Mccormack pulled off a fine save in the Wexford goal to ensure the sides went in level at half time
The second half continued in the same vein as the first with both sides creating chances and both defences and keepers remaining well in control. Raheny enjoyed their best spell when Siobhan Killeen came on to replace Sandra Mulhall on the hour mark and for 15 minutes, the Youths defence had to work hard to keep them at bay.
The breakthrough in the game came on 75 minutes when Cherelle Khessal broke down the right wing and crossed the ball for Sadie Murphy to volley to the net off the crossbar, much to the delight of the sizeable home crowd. Raheny came in search of an equaliser and twice Charlotte Mccormack was called on to save point blank shots and minutes later dived bravely at the feet of Kileen and Creagh to deny the visitors a goal
However, with two minutes to go, Ciara Grant crossed to Mary Waldron who headed powerfully off the crossbar and into the net for a well-deserved equaliser. The visitors could have stole all three points in the end when Siobhan Kileen rounded Mccormack but found her shot cleared off the line by a very impressive Jessica Gleeson and minutes later the final whistle sounded the end of a match where a draw was probably a deserved result
In a match where both sides showed the positive side of the Women's National League, Rebecca Creagh, Mary Waldron and Seana Cooke all impressed for Raheny while Cherelle Khessal, Jessica Gleeson and Charlotte Mccormack all excelled for the home side.
WEXFORD YOUTHS WOMEN
Charlotte Mccormack, Clare Conlon, Jessica Gleeson, Laura Heffernan, Linda Douglas (Rianna Jarrett) Ciara O'brien, Maria Delahunty, Edel Kennedy, Cherelle Khessal, Nicola Dunphy, Sadie Murphy
Lynn Bradley, Elaine Murray, Shauna Newman, Seana Cooke, Rebecca Creagh, Rachel Graham, Katie Mccabe, Sandra Mulhall (Siobhan Kileen) Rebecca Walsh, Ciara Grant, Mary Waldron VENUE: Ferrycarrig Park REFEREE: Michelle O'neill