Craughwell strike late to win County titleOctober 25, 2012 - 7:00am
Eoghan Cormican in Kinvara
A youthful Craughwell outfit earned promotion to the Intermediate ranks following this dramatic one-point victory over a determined, if not limited, Ballinderreen side at Kinvara on Saturday.
Although this County Junior camogie decider developed into something of a slow-burner, the final moments were lased with excitement and, indeed, tension. The pendulum, which for so long pointed in favour of Ballinderreen, swung feverishly from side to side, until Craughwell eventually grabbed the verdict in the true style of champions.
Two minutes out,however, the script read for a much different ending. Centre-back Siobhan Coen converted a pressure free to edge Ballinderreen in front and the South Galway club looked destined for a victory that would avenge last year’s final heartbreak, but two Craughwell scores, summoned in the depths of injury-time, saw Ballinderreen hopes shattered in the cruellest of fashion for a second successive year.
The losers fought gallantly until the bitter end and while they could not be faulted for commitment or, indeed, passion, they lacked sufficient firepower to put Craughwell away when in the ascendency and their offensive limitations were badly exposed when forced to chase the game late on.
Though playing into the teeth of a stiffening breeze, Craughwell opened the scoring through Rachel Cahill as early as the first minute and the corner forward’s effort was followed up by an excellent Shauna Burke stroke.
Ballinderreen required a swift response and Yvonne Crotty provided it with a well struck point with a foul on Mary Maloney in the subsequent action, allowing corner forward Sinead Kelly level proceedings at 0-2 apiece. Maloney and Craughwell’s Sinead Gaffney traded white flags in the ensuing passages of play, before Ballinderreen’s Lisa McTigue danced her way through the Craughwell cover on 25 minutes, lifting the roof of the net with a powerful strike.
Finbar Meehan’s charges carried that three point advantage to the break, but Craughwell didn’t waste much time clawing back the deficit thereafter, with Lisa Hynes setting up Shauna Burke; the corner forward duly obliging in rounding her marker and firing over.
For more, read this week's Connacht Tribune.