Waterford IT retained the Ashbourned Cup as they had two points to spare over UCC in the final at Cork IT yesterday afternoon.
Inspired by good performances from their captain, Wexford star Ursula Jacob, Katie Power, Stacey Redmond and player of the tournament Katrina Parrock, WIT were efficient in most sectors while UCC suffered from an over-reliance on Cork players Orla Cotter and Denise Cronin, though centre-back Fionnuala Carr also put in a solid performance.
Ultimately though, WIT’s better economy from scoring opportunities was what swung the game when it was in the melting pot after Cronin scored a brilliant goal for UCC in the 39th minute of the game.
In a low-scoring first half, the sides traded blows, and with chances were hard to come by WIT led by 0-3 to 0-2 at the interval, Marie O’Neill having the best goal opportunity for them only to be denied by Denise Leahy.
WIT produced a brilliant start to the second half, however, and points from Parrock, Jacob, Redmond and Karen Kelly extended their lead.
Cronin struck to narrow the gap again though, dispossessing Redmond before soloing from halfway and unleashing a brilliant shot from just outside the 20m line.
When Cronin’s midfield partner Jill Horan pointed immediately after, there was a point between the sides and it was all to play for, but UCC could not muster an equaliser.
Instead, Parrock responded for WIT and then Jacob won the resultant puckout and slotted over to put the margin back to three points. After Cotter and Power exchanged points, UCC’s Horan had a goal chance but Kristina Kenneally was equal to it and in the end WIT managed to hold out thanks to some good defending.
Scorers for Waterford IT: U Jacob 0-4 (0-2f), M O’Neill, K Parrock 0-2 each, S Redmond, K Power, K Kelly 0-1 each.
UCC: O Cotter 0-4 (0-3f), D Cronin 1-1, J Horan 0-1.
WATERFORD IT: K Kenneally; T Shortt, SA Fitzgerald, K Cottrell; C Dormer, A Dalton, S Redmond; D Gaule, T Jackman; K Power, M O’Neill, K Parrock; K Kelly, U Jacob, M Quilty.
UCC: D Leahy; J Brien, S Collins, E O’Shea; A McNamara, F Carr, M Crowley; J Horan, D Cronin; G Kenneally, O Cotter, T Muldowney; D Fahy, S McGrath, A McLoughney.
Referee: J Morrissey (Tipperary).