Friday 26 December 2014

Jacob on song as Wexford show mettle to hold off plucky Cork

Published 07/07/2014 | 02:30

Photo: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE
Photo: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Wexford look like they're a team on a mission this year and they hit Cork with a sensational first-half blitz to inch closer to an All-Ireland semi-final spot.

Helena Jacob's side beat champions Galway in their opening tie and showed their mettle once more at Wexford Park, although they had to withstand a strong second-half fightback from the Rebelettes.

The hosts flew from the traps and led by two points when Siona Nolan picked out Katrina Parrock with a superb long ball and the St Ibar's forward beat her marker before goaling from close range.

Kate Kelly and Parrock combined in the 20th minute to set up another goal for Brid Gordon and Wexford led by 2-10 to 0-4 at half-time. Cork were a different outfit after the break and a string of points from Ashling Thompson, Orla Cotter (two) and Joanne Casey plus a Katrina Mackey goal reduced the margin to five.

Wexford were able to steady the ship though and with Ursula Jacob bringing her tally to 10 points, they won by 2-14 to 1-11.

HUMDINGER

Meanwhile, Offaly got their first win of the campaign, edging out Derry in a humdinger by 1-17 to 2-11 at O'Connor Park.

Playing against the wind in the first half, the hosts were quickly out of the blocks and built a 1-9 to 0-3 lead by the 25th minute. Tina Hannon was in terrific form, scoring seven points, five in the first half, while also setting up the goal for Arlene Watkins.

However, Derry rallied before the break and two goals in two minutes from Mary Kelly got them right back in the game with Offaly leading by just 1-10 to 2-5.

Grainne McGoldrick's points (nine in total) kept Derry in touch but in the last 10 minutes Offaly made the decisive break with points from Elaine Dermody, Watkins and Hannon sealing the victory.

Champions Galway got their campaign back on track with a comfortable win over Dublin by 3-21 to 1-5. Miriam Twomey opened the scoring for Dublin after 31 seconds, but it was all Galway from there as they scored 1-12 without reply until the interval, with Noreen Coen pouncing for the goal.

Dublin had their best period after the break with Sarah Ryan getting a 41st-minute goal, but Orlaith McGrath responded with a goal immediately and was involved in the move for Ailish O'Reilly's major soon after to wrap it up.

Kilkenny beat Tipperary 2-21 to 0-7. Denise Gaule, Katie Power and Aisling Dunphy were amongst the scorers as they led by 0-12 to 0-5 at half-time. Second-half goals from Michelle Quilty and Shelly Farrell put the game to bed.

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