National Camogie League Division 2
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, who threatened a lot, but actually delivered little when it came to scoring.
Having said that the Antrim defence was very sound indeed, Chloe Drain, Laoise McKenna, Niamh Donnelly and captain Maeve Connolly all in control.
The Saffrons played with the use of the wind in the opening half and were 3-3 to a point ahead after 13 minutes. Amazingly they failed to score then for the next 13 minutes but finished the half strongly with a point from Katie Carey followed by a goal from Róisín McCormick both in the fourth minute of injury time.
That left the score-line at the break 4-5 to 0-2, but Dublin never really got going in the second half with Katie Carey dropping back as a sweeper at half-back. They scored two points from frees in the third quarter, but Antrim took off again in the last quarter and scored four unanswered points.
Amy Boyle placed Maeve Kelly for the opening score, a goal in the 4th minute. Katie Carey added two points before Lucia McNaughton’s cross-field pass went all the way to Róisín McCormick and she buried it in the net.
Although Dublin responded with a point from Megan Benson, the poc out went straight to McCormick who raced through for a second goal. With Carey adding a point it looked as if Antrim were well on top.
However Dublin settled and over the next quarter of an hour worked themselves back into the game. Going into stoppage time in the opening half they would have been happy enough at 3-4 to 0-2. But McCormick then completed an excellent Antrim move that saw the sliotar moved through Lucia McNaughton, Christine Laverty and Katie Carey and the TUD student finished to the net to bring her first half tally to three goals.
With Carey dropping back to shield her defence the scoring slowed up and Dublin only registered two points from frees, Aisling McKearney and Sadhb Duffy, 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.
Antrim : E Boyle, L McKenna, C Drain, M Lynn, N Donnelly (0-1 free), M Connolly capt., R Kelly, E Laverty, A Boyle, M Kelly (1-0), A Connolly, L McNaughton, R McCormick (3-2), K Carey (0-5, 0-4 frees), C Laverty.
Subs : C Duffin for L McNaughton (40), C Dobbin for M Kelly (49), Á Donnelly for A Connolly (49), C McKillop for R Kelly (53), E Falloon (0-1) for C Laverty (53), E McKee for A Boyle (58), E Kearns for K Carey (58).
Dublin : D Cooke, E Parker, L Robinson, N Doherty, C Ní Mhaolagáin, C Buchanan capt., C Griffin, N Heffernan, M Benson (0-1), C Rigney, C O’Connor, H Finnegan, S Duffy (0-2, 0-1 free), A McKearney (0-1 free)
Subs : S Murphy for D Griffin (38), N Murphy for C O’Connor (42), E Johnston for S Duffy (53), A Andrews for C Rigney (56), N McCormack for H Finnegan (56), R O’Grady for N Doherty (56), C Murphy for M Benson (58), A Gerarty for N Heffernan (58)
Referee : EP Cassidy (Derry).