Carlow’s late surge sees them snatch a draw

Glen Dimplex All-Ireland Intermediate Championship Group Two

Antrim 1-11 Carlow 1-11

A never say die attitude by Carlow saw them claw their way back to share the points in the opening round of the All Ireland Intermediate Championship round robin game at Ahoghill on Saturday. With just two minutes of normal time still to play the Saffrons held a three point lead and they appeared to be on course for an opening day win, but Carlow would not give up the fight and they threw everything into attack over the last four minutes.

Rebecca Kelly grabbed a poc-out from goalkeeper Aine Graham and fired over from 40 metres to start the comeback. Suddenly the momentum was with the visitors and Cavanagh’s fellow midfielder Eleanor Tracey carried the fight to Antrim as she sent over two more points to tie the game at 1-11 apiece. The result keeps both teams in line for qualification, but with Derry seniors in the same group, who will be short odds favourites to qualify out of it, the margins are very narrow.

With a strong breeze in Antrim’s favour for the first half and they went in at the break leading 1-8 to 0-6 with Dervla Cosgrove accounting for seven of the points, six from frees while Maria Bakewell got the goal after a low shot by Cosgrove had come back off the base of the post.

With Antrim holding the visitors to just a point in the first twenty minutes of the second half it looked like Bakewell’s goal was crucial. When Antrim still had three points to spare with time almost up the win appeared to be sowed up, but Carlow never gave up the fight and their efforts were rewarded with a share of the spoils.

Antrim: M Bakewell (1-0), D Cosgrove (0-9, 8 frees), A McNeill and O Laverty (0-1) each.

Carlow: C Cody (1-2), E Treacy (0-5, 3 frees), R Kelly, E Lawlor, E Doyle and H Wall (0-1) each.

Antrim: Á Graham, M McKinley, C Kearney, E Traynor, C Crawford, E McMullan, Brónach Magill, A McNeill, F McIntosh, O Laverty, Bríd Magill, E McInrosh, D Cosgrove, M Bakewell, N Neeson.

Subs: S Fyfe for M Bakewell (38), C Laverty for E McMullan (43), C O’Boyle for E McIntosh (44), E Coulter for Brónach Magill (53), A Donnelly for N Neeson (54)

Carlow: Catherine Cavannagh, SJ Burke, M Nolan, L Nolan, A Breen, K Nolan, KG Murphy, R Kelly, E Tracey, Ciara Cavannagh, C Cody, N Minchin, E Ellis, E Lawlor, E Doyle.

Subs: A Murphy for E Lillis (HT), H Wall for E Doyle (38), T Wall for N Minchin (54)

Referee: P McDonnell (Cavan)

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