Two goals from Siobhán Flannery and a second consecutive player-of-the-match return by Kate Kenny in All-Irelands were among the many highlights as St Rynagh’s made it back-to-back AIB All-Ireland Intermediate Club Camogie titles and in the process, ensured that the next Offaly championship winners will be operating at senior level next season, on a 5-14 to 2-6 scoreline at Croke Park.
It always looked like a stiff task for Salthill-Knocknacarra against the hot favourites, with their joint captain Orla Callanan missing out due to a cruciate knee ligament injury.
It got even more difficult when Flannery snuck in behind the Galway city side’s defensive cover in the fifth minute to goal after good work from Linda Sullivan and when Emma Madden received her marching orders for a second yellow-card offence in the 22nd minute, there was no way back.
They earned a lot of fans by the manner in which they continued to battle all the way to the line, however, and a couple of late goals from Aisling Griffin and Sorcha McGinley were due reward for their efforts.
Indeed their entire full-forward line were responsible for their three first-half points, which told of a potential threat had they been able to get enough ball in, but Róisín Egan and Gráinne Dolan were powerful presences further out, ensuring the traffic went in the other direction.
And Rynagh’s had so much speed and movement, using the diagonal ball so astutely, that they seemed likely to score from every attack.
Kenny and Flannery added second-half goals and Kenny ended with a tally of 1-9, with some of her points a wonder of accuracy and clean striking.
At times it looked like Salthill-Knocknacarra would be overrun, with the Rynagh’s half-back line in complete control, and Vicky Flanagan made some tremendous saves before the goals came at the other end to put a better gloss on the scoreline.
There was never any doubt about the ultimate verdict though as the powerful Saints had done the damage and were able to cruise home.
SCORERS FOR ST RYNAGH’S: K Kenny 1-9(0-fs); S Flannery 2-0; M Daly, K O’Connell 1-0 each; E Corcoran, G Dolan, R Egan, L Sullivan, S Hanamy 0-1 each
SCORERS FOR SALTHILL-KNOCKNACARRA: S McGinley 1-1; L Kelly 0-3(2fs); A Griffin 1-0; A Kelly, E Hayes 0-1 each
ST RYNAGH’S: E Gilligan, S Moran, E Sullivan, M Doorley, E Corcoran, G Dolan, K O’Connell, H Dolan, R Egan, L Sullivan, S Hanamy, M Daly, L Mannion, K Kenny, S Flannery. Subs: L Flannery for S Flannery (45), C O’Connell for Doorley (48), A O’Regan for Sullivan (48), A McLoughlin for H Dolan (52), R Daly for O’Connell (52)
SALTHILL-KNOCKNACARRA: V Flanagan, S Donnellan, E Madden, F Kelly, A Joyce, A Keane, C Murray, S Divilly, L Kelly, C Keane, A Griffin, J O’Flaherty, A Kelly, S McGinley, E Hayes. Subs: I Morrison for O’Flaherty (39), M Murray for Joyce (48), F O’Sullivan for Donnellan (52), H Hernon for A Kelly (59)
REFEREE: Barry Nea (Westmeath)