By Daragh Ë Conch·ir
Inniscarra will play Killimor in the All-Ireland senior club camogie final at Croke Park next month but they were made to work very hard by a Jane Adams-inspired O’Donovan Rossa before finally pulling away as the Antrim contingent tired in the final quarter.
The switch of Niamh Dilworth from full-forward to centre-forward proved crucial to the Cork champions as she provided a strong ball-winning presence, while midfielder Rena Buckley was a colossal contributor to the victory, constantly breaking up O’Donovan Rossa attacks and getting on a mountain of ball.
O’Donovan Rossa signalled their intent early on when they had the sliotar in the back of the Inniscarra net after just 35 seconds but the ægoal’ was disallowed for a square ball. They gave as good as they got for the remainder of the half, with Adams unerring from placed balls. Indeed all Glenswomen’s points, apart from one, came from frees or 45s and all of them came from Adams’ stick.
They were a little unlucky to trail at the break, 1-4 to 0-4, with Niamh McCarthy’s cracking goal the difference. McCarthy found herself in space and drove forward before unleashing a powerful shot to the net.
Adams responded with a brace of frees but with team captain Margaret Noelle O’Sullivan launching a magnificent point and Dilworth adding two from frees herself, the mid-Cork outfit kept their noses in front at the change of ends.
Adams managed to bring her personal tally to six points after the resumption but she had little attacking support although it took a brilliant Orla Healy interception to deny O’Donovan Rossa a certain goal.
Natalie McGuinness did find the net for the Ulster side 10 minutes into the second half but they could not cope with Inniscarra’s power in the middle. Dilworth brought her own tally to seven and she had good support from the likes of McCarthy who added two points from play including a wonderful effort from a very acute angle.
With Fiona O’Connell, Buckley and Joanne Casey also on the mark, Inniscarra gradually pulled away to cement their berth in the decider.
Eoghan Rua made sure that there was some joy for Ulster camogie when overcoming Lismore in the intermediate semi-final on a 2-6 to 1-6 scoreline.
Rosanna McAleese scored an early goal for the Derry side who led by 1-3 to 0-1 but Ruth Geoghegan responded with a major at the other end and added a point, while Nicola Morrissey slotted two. Grßinne McGoldrick was very dangerous at centre-forward for Eoghan Rua though and she registered five of her side’s six points, three of which came in the first half.
That helped them lead by just one at the break, 1-4 to 1-3. There was never more than the minimum between the sides until Eoghan Rua’s Grace McMullan scrambled the sliotar to the net after a goalmouth scramble for the defining score.