Disappointment for NUIG as University of Limerick triumph in an absorbing encounter in Dangan, Galway.
ROUND THREE ASHBOURNE CUP
NUIG –v- UL
Referee Karl O’Brien
On Wednesday the 8th of February, NUIG played host to UL in the final game of the Ashbourne Group A. The game had all the ingredients to be a cracking affair with both teams fighting to the death for an Ashbourne Cup Semi-Final position. Both teams had been defeated by WIT and neither was willing to give anything on the day.
UL opened with the first score coming from a free from their full forward Roisin Byrne. NUIG, against the wind in the first half did not hang around on levelling things up with an accurate free from Chloe Morey in full forward. It was frantic stuff from both sides before UL scored three unanswered points courtesy of Byrne (2) and Cork’s Julia White. Tracy Murray scored an exceptional point from on the wing for NUIG before NUIG captain Michaela Morkan operating at Centre Forward scored from play followed by a pointed free from Chloé Morey. The sides finished four each at half time and with the wind now in their favour NUIG could feel confident going into the second half.
The second half commenced with NUIG playing with the wind, both teams again, ready for battle an enthralling encounter that either team could still win. Despite playing into the breeze UL opened the scoring with two frees from the deadly Byrne. Chloe Morey, who missed last week’s game due to injury, began to cause trouble for the UL defence and when she was fouled, Morey duly converted the free to leave it a one point game in favour of UL. The experience of UL was beginning to show and with Linda Bolger and Maria Walsh gaining the upperhand at midfield, UL piled on the pressure resulting in some excellent play from forwards Cait Devane, Julia White and the impressive Roisin Byrne. The NUIG forward line had plenty of possession with Galway star Noreen Coen to the fore, but NUIG could not break down the tightly knit UL back line who crowded out every NUIG scoring opportunity. UL continued to attack and were duly rewarded when they scored a great goal which gave them a cushioned lead with about 10 minutes to go. UL managed to add on a few points to leave the final score 1-11 to 0-06 in favour of UL.
It was a hard fought game between two teams in an attempt to gain the sought after Cup semi position. Both sides can take great pride from their performances but on the day UL were stronger and composed and fully deserving of their win. Well done to both teams and their management on a well fought game of camogie.