Intermediates have a lot of work to do
WEXFORD WERE comprehensively defeated by Down in their last match in the Irish Daily Star National League Division 2.
The Slaneysiders had to give away home advantage due to the heavy rain and with no pitch available in Wexford the sides travelled to the Bray Emmets pitch. Seven players were unavailable due to either injury or work committments which also didn't help their chances.
Down had the advantage of a strong wind in the first-half and made good use of it by clocking up 1-10 in the period. Wexford's only score in the first-half was their opening point which came from Emma O'Connor in the fourth minute.
Despite having plenty of possession, Wexford failed to register any further scores which is something that they will look to address before the championship season commences.
Down's scores started coming from a very good Fionnuala Carr who pointed a free, also in the fourth minute, and further overs came from Kelly O'Higgins, Niamh Mallon and Anna Rogan, with Mallon popping over another from a placed ball in the 13th minute.
Mallon and Carr added two more points before Mallon nailed another free in the 23rd minute. The same pair scored again, picking off lovely points from play before Mallon blasted the ball to the net just on half-time (1-10 to 0-1).
After the resumption Jackie Quigley added two points for Wexford from dead balls before Down's Nicola Branniff found the back of the net in the 36th minute.
Catherine McGourty added a point from play for Down, Niamh Mallon followed with another and then punished Wexford further as she struck the back of the net seconds later.
Jackie Quigley added another point for Wexford coming from a free but Mallon netted again as Down heaped pressure on the Wexford defence. Quigley added a fourth point from a placed ball in the 48th minute and then Wexford had a good period with points coming from Niamh O'Connor, Quigley (two) and Victoria Burke.
Marie Morrissey added a final point for her side but then Down ran back down the field and Maria McNally struck the back of the net just on full-time. All in all it was a frustrating day for Wexford who know they have much work to do before their championship campaign starts against Kilkenny on June 28.
Wexford: Laura Brennan; Brídín Doyle, Amy Ryan, Emma Leacy; Niamh O'Connor (0-1), Nicola Byrne, Molly McGuckin; Jackie Quigley (0-6, 5 frees), Rachel Collier; Anna Whitty, Mary Cummins, Emma O'Connor (0-1); Marie Morrisey (0-1), Hazel O'Leary, Deirdre McMahon. Subs. - Farren Byrne for McGuckin, Niamh Walsh for O'Leary, Victoria Burke (0-1) for Collier.
Down: Niamh Hazard; Karen Tinnelly, Ciara McGovern, Caoimhe Crossey; Clare Cleland, Lisa McAliskey, Emma McCormick; Aoife Keown (1-0), Catherine Rocks; Kelly O'Higgins (0-1), Bríd McGourty, Orla Maginn; Niamh Mallon (2-6), Fionnuala Carr (0-3), Anna Rogan (0-1). Subs. -Maria McNally (1-0) for Rocks, Nicola Branniff (1-0) for Mallon, Paula McKay for Rogan, Paula Gribben for Cleland, Nicola O'Hagan for Keown, Catherine McGourty (0-1) for B. McGourty.
Referee: Walter Cole (Cork).