Hurling & Camogie

Antrim into Division 3B final after win over Dublin

Dervla Cosgrove (right) scored 1-4 in Antrim's win over Dublin
Dervla Cosgrove (right) scored 1-4 in Antrim's win over Dublin

Very Ireland National Camogie League Division 3B round five

Antrim 1-11 Dublin 1-6; Offaly 1-5 Clare 5-21

ANTRIM are through to Saturday’s Very National league Division 3B final following a comfortable enough victory over Dublin in Armoy on Saturday.

The Saffrons got the perfect start with less than two minutes gone. Erin Traynor’s long ball was fielded by Bríd Magill who laid off a perfect hand-pass for Dervla Cosgrove to take at pace and hit the net.

Dublin never really recovered from that quick start from Antrim and it took them 21 minutes to register their only score of the half from Gráinne Skelton, who scored all six of their points, this the only one from open play.

The home defence was in total control at the break with Anna McNeill dropping deep and providing extra cover. Up front there was plenty of movement, particularly in the half-forward line, and Dervla Cosgrove fired over four frees in difficult enough conditions.

Her first was a relatively easy one on four minutes and Elen McIntosh scored the next two points for Antrim after well-worked moves from each wing.

Antrim had reached 1-4 by the time Dublin got their opening score, but Cosgrove (two frees) and Niamh Neeson (from a long pass from Caoimhe McNaughton) moved the score-board to 1-7 to 0-1 at the break. It was nothing less than the Saffrons deserved.

However they were rocked by a Dublin goal in the opening minutes of the second half when a long-distance free from Robyn Buckley came off a defender and ended in their net. Skelton added two frees and suddenly there was a chink of hope for the visitors.

The game swung back in Antrim’s favour during the middle of the half when Cara O’Boyle (two) and Orlagh Laverty hit fine points to put the game beyond Dublin. The visitors kept going and were rewarded with three more frees from Skelton in the last ten minutes with Sarah Fyfe coming off the bench for a fine point.

Clare were already in Saturday’s final, but they emphasised their form with a 28-point hammering of Offaly in the other game in the group.

Antrim scorers: D Cosgrove (1-4, 0-4 frees), E McIntosh (0-2), C O’Boyle (0-2), N Neeson (0-1), O Laverty (0-1), S Fyfe (0-1).

Dublin scorers: R Buckley (1-0 free), G Skelton (0-6, 0-5 frees)