Camogie Leagues Review: Antrim campaign up and running
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 1: Group 1
Kilkenny 0-10 Clare 1-9
Waterford 1-9 Offaly 0-12
The story of the second full round of senior fixtures at the weekend was Clare's victory over Kilkenny in Nowlan Park.
Eimear Kelly provided seven points, and Áine O'Loughlin the critical 47th minute goal as Ger O'Connell's charges emerged from the Lion's Den with a priceless Group 1 victory.
The visitors led by 0-4 to 0-2 at half-time with Kelly scoring all four points, but goalie Shauna Canny was also prominent. The Cats got back to within a point when O'Loughlin found the net, but they couldn't close the four points' gap and Clare were deserving of their unexpected victory
There was also plenty of excitement in the Waterford IT Arena where Offaly and the home side shared the spoils after Offaly hit 1-5 in the last quarter to come back from the dead.
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 1: Group 2
Tipperary 0-14 Dublin 0-8
Galway 4-13 Limerick 0-7
Champions Galway were out of Limerick's sight by half time in Ballinasloe when they led by 4-6 to 0-4 with Niamh Hanniffy scoring 1-2 and having a hand in the other three goals.
Limerick improved with the wind behind them in the second half but Galway were home and hosed.
In the other Group 2 clash, Tipperary also made it two from two by beating Dublin 0-14 to 0-8 to set up a winner-takes-all clash on March 3rd with Galway for a place in the final.
Tipp led by 0-7 to 0-5 at the change of ends, Cáit Devane doing most of the scoring.
Points from Martha O'Donoghue and Caragh Dawson brought the Dubs to within one with 10 minutes left but they failed to score again, while Devane and Róisín Howard sealed the win.
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 2 Group 1
Down 1-16 Kerry 0-15
Based on the first round results that saw Down easily beat Derry and Kerry overwhelmed by Galway, this was not supposed to be as tough a game for the home side as it turned out.
But after playing against the breeze, they found themselves 0-12 to 1-5 down, Niamh Mallon scoring 1-4 from that half time total.
With Patrice Diggins dangerous from play and particularly frees – she scored 0-12 over the hours, Down struggled to close the gap.
Dearbhla Magee and Karen McMullan worked hard at half back while Fionnaula Carr came in as a sub and scored two points. The star turn once again however was Niamh Mallon who finished with an impressive 1-11 as Down eventually drew level at 1-11 to 0-14 and then scored five of the final six points to go top of the group.
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 2 Group 2
Meath 11-17 Kildare 0-3
THIS tells as much about the problems in Kildare camogie as it does about a rejuvenated Meath who have made it two wins from two starts.
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 2 Group 3
Tipperary 1-6 Laois 0-5
Antrim 4-9 Dublin 0-4
ANTRIM got their National League campaign up and running in Ahoghill on Sunday with a comfortable victory over visiting Dublin with their defence back-boning a solid performance.
The Saffrons played with the use of the wind in the opening half and were 3-3 to a point ahead after 13 minutes, Maeve Kelly opening the scoring with a goal and Róisín McCormick adding two more while Katie Carey popped over the points.
Scoring then slowed and going into stoppage time in the opening half Dublin would have been happy enough at 3-4 to 0-2.
But McCormick then completed her hat-trick and suddenly Dublin's task was beyond them.
With Carey dropping back to shield her defence the visitors only registered two points from frees during the second half, before Antrim took off again with points from Róisín McCormick in the 46th and 48th minutes.
Niamh Donnelly from a long range free and sub Emily Falloon completed the scoring with late points on a good opening day for Antrim and their new management team of Paul McKillen, Jim McKernan and Elaine Dowds.
Tipperary won the other game in the group by a margin of four points against Laois. Antrim travel to Laois this Saturday for their next fixture
Antrim: K Carey (0-5, 0-4 frees), M Kelly (1-0), R McCormick (3-2), N Donnelly (0-1 free), E Falloon (0-1).
Dublin: S Duffy (0-2, 0-1 free), A McKearney (0-1 free), M Benson (0-1).
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 3 Group 1
Cavan 2-11 Roscommon 0-2
Limerick 0-15 Tyrone 1-4
CAVAN got their return to adult camogie off to the best possible start with a comfortable home win over Roscommon. Sinéad McKenna from Crosserlough scored 1-8 and Orla Smith added 1-1 as they won by 15 points.
Cavan's next game is against Limerick who beat Tyrone on Sunday by eight points. It wasn't the best outing for Tyrone who fielded with four of the St Patrick's Academy side that had won the All-Ireland less than 24 hours earlier.
One of those Academy girls Reagan Fay was their goal scorer while Roisin McErlain scored all four points from frees.
Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League Div 3 Group 2
Armagh 0-6 Down 2-8
Louth 0-0 Carlow 8-29
A GREAT result for Down with this new team in Division 3 playing at the same time as the Division 2 team were beating Kerry at the other end of Newry.
A lot of the credit will go to Clonduff goalie Karen Haughey who pulled off at least three top class saves.
Down led by 1-6 to 0-3 at the break with the goal scored by Katie McGilligan while Lauren Clarke added a goal midway through the second half.
Their next outing is in a fortnight's time against Carlow who overwhelmed Louth in the other group game on Sunday.