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Goals proved crucial for the Noresiders, who trailed against Liam Donoghue’s Tribeswomen by 0-11 to 1-5 at half-time.

Galway were heading for a comfortable half-time advantage but goals proved crucial for Kilkenny on the day and Aoife Neary bagged a crucial strike just before the break to haul the Cats back into contention.

In an exciting encounter, the sides were level at the three-quarter point before two goals in three minutes from Michelle Quilty and Edwina Keane sent Kilkenny into the comfort zone and on their way to a first Division 1 crown since 1993.

Galway, chasing a first title since 2005, had superb performances from Jessica Gill, who landed 0-8 and Veronica Curtin, who chipped in with five points.

Meanwhile, Clare gained revenge for last year’s heartbreaking Gala All-Ireland junior final defeat against Derry with a 4-8 to 3-9 victory against the Oak Leaf County in Saturday’s Division 2 decider.

Clare led by 2-6 to 1-5 at half-time and although substitute Oonagh Mullan bagged a second half brace of goals for Derry, the Banner County held on for a precious win.

Clare had sparkling performances from Sharon O’Loughlin, sister of former Clare hurler Ger æSparrow’ O’Loughlin, Fiona Lafferty and super sub Laura Linnane.

At the home of St Peregrine’s in Blanchardstown, Dublin, O’Loughlin scored 2-1, including a goal in each half, while Lafferty and Linnane chipped in with 1-1 each.

In the replayed Division 3 decider, Antrim ran out 6-11 to 3-7 victors against Offaly but the final scoreline flattered the Saffrons.

Antrim led by 5-3 to 3-7 at half-time and only managed to pull away from the Faithful County with late scoring blitz.

Grßinne Connolly, Clare Laverty and Sharon Graham each scored 2-1 for the Glenswomen while Michelle Davis top scored for Offaly with a 1-5 haul.




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