Minor camogie team make a heartbreaking exit
WEXFORD EXITED the All-Ireland Minor camogie championship following a heartbreaking loss to Tipperary on Sunday at The Ragg.
In recent years the Slaneysiders have been competing at 'B' level but, back where they belong with the under-age elite, there are plenty of positives to be taken from a campaign that only ended with a tight loss against the highly-regarded Premier girls.
A narrow defeat to Galway in their opening game was followed with a draw against Clare and then a superb victory over old foes Kilkenny which left Wexford within one big win of a place in the last four.
However, Tipperary had shown great form in earlier championship outings, including a five-point win over fellow qualifiers Galway, meaning Wexford were under no illusions about their journey.
The travelling team really needed a good start but didn't get it as two Róisín Howard goals and a trio of points from centre-forward Jenny Grace gave the Munster side a 2-4 to 0-3 lead at the interval.
Wexford did get three points in the first-half. Chloe Foxe nailed two frees but the score of the half came from Laura Dempsey after a nice pass from Katie O'Connor.
The visitors introduced Michelle Martin at the break and she impressed, along with Amy Cardiff and Sarah Banville, as Wexford won the second-half with a good brand of hurling. Indeed, with a little better luck the visitors might just have overturned the deficit and booked their semi-final place.
Foxe and Sarah O'Connor both nailed a pair of dead balls in the second period and Niamh Walsh added the other score after good build-up play involving Una Sinnott and Michelle Martin. However, Tipperary got just enough from the second period with points from Courtney Ryan, Niamh Tracey and Jenny Grace to see the Premier advance to the last four.
The season is not over for Wexford after elimination from All-Ireland contention. After a break for the Leaving Cert. the Slaneysiders will compete in the Leinster championship with high hopes of bettering the likes of Dublin, Kilkenny and Offaly and adding some silverware to the cupboard.
Wexford: Laura Brennan; Muireann Byrne, Sarah O'Connor (0-2 frees), Farren Byrne; Katie O'Connor, Doireann Kavanagh, Amy Cardiff; Una Sinnott, Niamh Walsh (0-1); Hazel O'Leary, Claire O'Reilly, Sarah Banville; Victoria Burke, Chloe Foxe (0-4, 3 frees, 1 '45), Laura Dempsey (0-1). Subs. - Michelle Martin for Burke, Aine Kelly for O'Leary.