Johnstownbridge secured back to back Senior Camogie Championship titles with a hard-fought win over a determined St Laurence’s side in Clane last Sunday evening, writes Eoin Beatty.
Senior Camogie Championship Final
St Laurence’s: 2-6
2011 had been a major success for the ladies from the north of the county as they collected the clubs first Senior Camogie Championship trophy, and with the majority of the girls from that winning team playing in the 2012 final, they were seeking their second victory is as many years and they did just that.
Laurence’s who are one of the sports most decorated teams in Kildare certainly didn’t arrive in Coneff Park just to make up the numbers as they put it up to their opponents throughout and even lead by a goal at the break.
JTB however, opened the scoring inside the first 50 seconds of the game with a point from wing forward Miriam Murphy following a poor defensive clearance.
Larries’ response was immediate and effective as Reitlin Treacy’s ricocheted effort flew into the top corner of the JTB net, much to the delight of the large travelling support.
Siobhan Hurley, without a doubt the best player on the day, landed 2 frees in quick succession to open up her account for the afternoon and they were by no means to be her last.
At this point, St Laurence’s were fixed firmly in the driving seat and added a further 3 points without reply through Carol Nolan (free), Samantha Keatley and Aisling Treacy respectively.
They did however suffer a slight setback as Siobhan Hurley rifled a 21 yard free low into the bottom corner past a hapless Melanie Treacy in the Laurence’s net.
But it was the girls in red and yellow who would finish the half out the strongest, racking up an impressive 1-1 in all before Paddy Moore’s whistle to signal the break.
First, Aisling Treacy sent a high ball into the JTB penalty area, which caused havoc and confusion amongst the defence and deflected past Kildare goalkeeper Tanya Johnson who was rooted to the spot. Treacy then landed a 30 yard free with the last play of the half to leave the score at 2-4 to 1-4 at the interval.
This score-line, in many peoples eyes came as a huge shock as Larries were firm underdogs and it looked as though an upset was on the cards.
However, Johnstownbridge entered the second half, a completely different side showing more conviction in front of goal. They would outscore their opponents by a massive 10 points to 2 and turn the game right on its head.
Hurley picked up from where she had left off in the opening period and was immediately back on the scoresheet with 2 points in the space of 5 minutes.
Laurence’s to their credit, tried their best not to let their opponents back into the game with points from Samantha Keatley and substitute Amanda Fullam.
But JTB were getting into their stride and showing why they were the defending champions, hitting 8 points on the bounce.
Careen Farrell got the scoring spree under way with an excellent point from virtually on the sideline.
Then up popped the ever reliable Hurley to knock over a further 5 points (3 frees) to bring her overall total for the day to an outstanding 1-9.
Just to rub salt in the Larries wounds, Clodagh Flanagan and Miriam Murphy respectively added two more insurance points deep into injury time to ensure the trophy would be making its way back to the north of the county for the second year in a row.
Tanya Johnson, Fiona Blake, Eimear Hurley, Shona Farrell, Áine Hurley, Jane O’Donoghue, Jenna Murphy, Clodagh Flanagan (0-1), Aisling Holton, Miriam Murphy (0-3), Siobhan Hurley (1-9 1-5f), Ciara Mooney, Careen Farrell (0-1), Aoife Trant, Roisin O’Connell.
Melanie Treacy, Muireann Fagan, Roxanne Treacy, Pamela Grufferty, Maggie Keatley, Louise Keatley, Melissa O’Neill, Carol Nolan (0-1f), Niamh Breen, Ciara Tallon, Samantha Keatley (0-2), Reiltin Treacy (1-0), Deirbhile Byrne, Elaine Miley, Aisling Treacy (1-2 2f). Sub: Amanda Fullam (0-1) for Aisling Treacy.