Hurling & Camogie

Assumption camogs fall just short in All-Ireland bid

Assumption, Ballynahinch
Assumption, Ballynahinch Assumption midfielder Daire O’Shea finds herself surrounded by St John the Baptist players during yesterday’s final. Picture: Pat O'Hare

Allianz All-Ireland Junior D Camogie Championship final

Assumption, Ballynahinch 1-8 John the Baptist, Hospital 1-9

PLAYER-of-the-match Aoibhinn O’Connor pointed a free from just outside the 45-metre line in the 59th minute to win this match in Kiltale, Co Meath yesterday.

It was the Limerick side’s first score in 20 minutes and halted the Ballynahinch comeback that had seen them draw level after scoring 1-5 without reply. And, that was Assumption’s problem; they didn’t really get going until midway through the second half.

O’Connor hit them hard at the start with three points in the first seven minutes. Although Daire O’Shea struck back with a point from a free, O’Connor cut in from the left corner to fire high into the net in the 11th minute.

By this point Ballynahinch had moved Erin Daly back to mark the Bruff forward, but she still had accumulated all 1-5 of Hospital’s total by the halfway stage.

She then added two more points on the re-start, before Ballynahinch captain Ellie McCabe drove forward to kick-start her team’s comeback.

In reply Abigail Buckley became just the second scorer for Hospital before the Ulster champions got their fourth point from Alannah McKay. Points followed for Caileigh McConnell and Orla Owens before a move down the left wing ended with Aoife Gilmore finding the net with 10 minutes to go.

A minute later O’Shea pointed a free to reduce the gap to a single point. By this point the dangerous O’Connor had fallen back into midfield and she won a couple of frees to break the Assumption momentum and relieve the pressure on her defence.

But Assumption kept pushing forward and Laura McEvoy placed McConnell for the equaliser to set up a grandstand finish.

At that stage, either team could have clinched the result but the break fell to Hospital when they won a free out the field and O’Connor brought her personal tally to 1-8 by firing the winner between the posts.

Assumption A Gilmore 1-0; A McKay, D O’Shea (2f) & C McConnell 0-2 each; E McCabe & O Owens 0-1 each

St John the Baptist A O’Connor 1-8 (0-3f); A Buckley 0-1