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Hurley keeps cool to clinch league crown for Lilywhites

Kildare maintained their winning run over Armagh but it took an injury-time free from Siobhan Hurley to do so and, in the process, garner the Division 3 title at Donaghmore, Ashbourne, on a 1-8 to 0-10 scoreline.

The Lilywhites have made tremendous progress in recent seasons, bagging the Division 4 title before accounting for the Orchard County's finest in the All-Ireland junior 'A' championship in 2010. They lost the Division 3 final to Meath by the minimum margin last year but were on the right side of a tight scoreline this time.

Armagh scored the first three points, courtesy of the excellent Bernie Murray, Colette McSorley and Ciara Donnelly. Significantly, McSorley's well-struck shot from a sixth-minute penalty was saved by Brid Byrnes and the Kildare custodian made another tremendous stop before half-time.

PUSHED

Points from Susie O'Carroll and Hurley pushed Kildare two points clear before Armagh finished well to go in level at the break on 0-5 apiece.

Cliodhna McSweeney was introduced at half-time by Kildare and within two minutes she flashed an unstoppable shot to the Armagh net. Hurley added a couple of points but Armagh showed tremendous courage and McSorley drew the sides level once again with five successful frees and time running out.

Hurley snatched the honours, though, the player of the match holding her nerve to convert that late opportunity from 45 metres and spark huge celebrations.

Meanwhile, camogie in the capital was given a huge boost as Dublin's second string annexed the Division 4 title at the end of a very tight and cagey affair, overcoming Carlow by 1-6 to 0-5. The deciding score arrived 10 minutes into the second half when substitute Laoise Quinn shot to the Carlow net.

Irish Independent