Premier county girls cruise to semi-finals
Published 28/03/2016 | 02:30
Camogie: Tipperary have qualified for the Division 1 semi-finals of the Camogie League by virtue of their nine-point win over Dublin in The Ragg and Clare's 15-point reverse at the hands of Galway at the Clooney GAA grounds.
It has been a long time since the once all-powerful Premier County sat at the top table of camogie, their last national title coming 12 years ago but the under-age work of recent seasons is beginning to bear fruit. The first half was very evenly contested and the sides were separated only by a goal from Jenny Grace, going in at the break on 1-5 to 0-5.
Grace finished with 1-8 of the Tipperary tally in their 2-12 to 1-6 success, five of those points coming from frees.
Clare won the first two games of their campaign but defeat to Tipperary has sparked a horror run of three defeats.
Aoife Donoghue, Caitriona Murphy, Ailish O'Reilly and Shauna Healy raised green flags for Ollie Bergin's team, while Aoife Callanan slotted six points. As has become customary, Chloe Morey offered the only real threat for Clare as she scored all bar one of the Bannerwomen's points.
A victory would have put Limerick through as group winners at Kilkenny's expense and Ann Downey's outfit advance as table-toppers by virtue of a vastly superior score difference of +35 points, with the other two deadlocked on +20 points each.
Certainly, Niamh Mulcahy couldn't have done much more for the Shannonsiders, scoring 12 points in the 2-12 to 0-14 defeat but it was Ann Dalton that provided the most significant contribution, scoring 2-2 to edge the Noresiders home in Bruff.
Elsewhere, Waterford secured their first win in the top tier as they made the journey to Owenbeg pay with a 3-12 to 2-9 win over Derry.
The campaign finished on a high for Offaly too as they saw off Wexford in St Brendan's Park by 1-12 to 0-13. Michaela Morkan shot seven points for the hosts while Arlene Watkins pounced for a goal.
In Division 2, Meath will play Carlow and Kildare will take on Galway in the semi-finals, while in Division 3, Armagh will take on Dublin and Kerry will play Roscommon.