Junior A camogie awaits Bal next season
Bride Rovers 1-10
SHIRLEY MOLONEY REPORTS
CAROLINE Sugrue held her nerve to score an injury-time point that clinched the SE Systems Cork Camogie junior B championship title.
The Ballinascarthy forward came up trumps with two late points as her side came from behind to earn a deserved win against Bride Rovers in a thrilling encounter.
The West Cork side held the lead on five occasions and took advantage of the strong breeze to hold a five-point lead for a large part of the first half.
However, Bride Rovers showed a resurgence when they cut the lead to the slimmest on the cusp of half time via the influential Jennifer Barry who pointed and a Sarah Murphy goal.
Indeed, it was Bride Rovers who opened the scoring via Grace Kearney, but two Caroline Sugrue placed balls in quick succession had Ballinascarthy ahead after eight minutes.
Bride Rovers were then awarded a penalty, however Saoirse McCarthy’s shot was brilliantly saved on the line and cleared out for a 45-metre free which she fired over to level proceedings.
The Ballinascarthy defence, marshalled by Martina O’Brien between the posts and spearheaded by Claire Kingston at centre back, proved resilient in restricting Bride Rovers from scoring until the 23rd minute.
In the interim, the unerring Sugrue pointed three placed balls whilst the hard-working Moira Barrett fired over two impressive points to push the West Cork side five clear after 20 minutes.
Bride Rovers then cut the deficit to four and five minutes later Ballinascarthy were dealt a blow when their hard-working defence was penetrated by Murphy who fired low to the net past O’Brien to cut the deficit to just one.
Ballinascarthy responded via Sugrue when she collected a long ball in from player-of-the-match Michelle Dullea and, showed the defence a clean pair of heels to goal, she fired Ballinascarthy into a four-point lead on the cusp of half time.
Bride Rovers cut the lead to three when Murphy pointed under pressure, as Bal led 1-7 to 1-4 at half time.
Three unanswered scores from Bride Rovers within six minutes of the restart had the sides level for the third time. Sugrue pushed Ballinascarthy ahead when she pointed a 45 metre free, but a McCarthy point had the sides level after 41 minutes.
It was Sugrue who nudged Ballinascarthy one clear on the three-quarter mark when she pointed a 20-metre free in front of the posts but it was to be ten minutes before a response was registered via McCarthy when she pointed a free to tie up the sides for the fifth time.
With Bride Rovers playing with the advantage of the strong wind, the Ballinascarthy rearguard remained tenacious with Sinead McCarthy, Kingston and captain Siobhán Hennessy unwavering.
However, with four minutes left, Bride Rovers took the lead for the first time since the fourth minute when McCarthy pointed a 45-metre free.
It was to be shortlived however, as Sugrue levelled with a free and then pushed her side one clear in injury time when she split the posts with the match-winning point to ensure her side victory and junior A status for 2019.
Ballinascarthy: C Sugrue 1-9 (7f), M Barrett 0-2.
Bride Rovers: S McCarthy 0-6 (3f, 2 45), S Murphy 1-1, J Barry 0-2, G Kearney 0-1.
Ballinascarthy: M O’Brien; S McCarthy, K O’Driscoll, H O’Donovan; L Hegarty, C Kingston, S Hennessy (c); C Crowley, K O’Donovan; M Barrett, M Dullea, A Condon; B McCarthy, C Sugrue, E O’Brien.
Sub: A Flynn for B McCarthy (ht).
Bride Rovers: K O’Connor; J Cahill, E Larkin, E Barry; E Collins, C O’Flynn (c), T O’Sullivan; M Hazelwood, A Keating; A O’Connor, S O’Sullivan, S McCarthy; G Kearney, S Murphy, J Barry.
Subs: K Quirke for T O’Sullivan (49), C Hazelwood for Á Keating (60).
Referee: Frank O’Dwyer.