Laois U-14 girls held to a draw by Wexford in Leinster championship

Sport Editor

Reporter:

Sport Editor

Email:

sport@leinsterexpress.ie

Laois U-14 girls held to a draw by Wexford in Leinster championship

The Laois U-14 girls team drew with Wexford over the weekend.

Laois U-14 Girls played their second game in the Leinster Championship against a very strong Wexford team in Portarlington on Saturday last.

Laois 1-7

Wexford 1-7

Weather conditions again were ideal and huge credit must go to the Portarlington GAA Club for having the pitch in such good condition, given the weather conditions in the lead up to this game.

Laois made a few changes to the team from their win over Offaly a fortnight ago. Straight from the throw in the game started at a frantic pace. Wexford enjoyed a lot of possession and raced into a four point lead with scores from Caolfhionn Ni Nuallain and Grainne Ní Ailin. The Laois defence were under a lot of pressure and it looked like it was going to be tough day at the office.

Realising they were in a game Laois began to get to grips with Wexford and clawed their way back with scores from Jess Whelan and Niamh Conroy. Laois then had a goal disallowed with no real explanation from the referee as to why.

Wexford continued to pressure the Laois defence and were awarded a penalty. The penalty struck the crossbar and the rebound was well saved by Jenna Griffin in the Laois goals. Some frantic defending resulted in a 45 for Wexford and they went two points clear.

Laois then had another goal disallowed and again with no clear explanation given by the referee. Laois tagged on another point from a free from Jess Whelan to finish out the half 0-5 to 0-4 in favour of Wexford.

Laois came out in the second half with real determination and went into the lead with a fine score from the impressive Molly McNulty and points from Jess Whelan. Laois then got a goal from a good team move finished by Kerri Smith. Wexford were not giving up by any means and continued to pile on the pressure on Laois.

They got a goal from a good team move finished off by Grainne Ní Ailin. Laois were then awarded a penalty but unfortunately were not able to capitalise and pushed it wide of the post. Wexford then went down the field and scored another point from Grainne Ní Ailin to put the minimum between them.

Both teams were trying hard to make the breakthrough with the final ball letting them down on a few occasions but also because of what can only be described as peculiar refereeing decisions affecting both sides. With the clock ticking down Wexford were awarded a free to equalise and Leah Furlong kicked over to draw the teams level.

That’s how it finished. This was a very entertaining game and there were some very good performances on both sides. For Laois this was an excellent team performance both by the starting 15 and all eight subs introduced.

Westmeath are Laois’s next opponents in two weeks’ time at the same venue and with a convincing win over Offaly it will be a winner take all showdown for a place in the semi-finals.

LAOIS

Scorers: Jess Whelan 0-5 (0-4 frees), Kerri Smith 1-0, Niamh Conroy (free), Molly McNulty 0-1 each.

Team: Jenna Griffin (C); Laura Dempsey, Koren Dunne, Cara Aird; Ciara Crowley, Emma Hickey, Anna Keane; Ellen Conroy, Sinead Goode; Molly McNulty, Kate O'Reilly, Danielle Brennan; Holly Langford, Jess Whelan, Niamh Conroy. Subs: Sarah Hynes for Goode (16 mins), Kerri Smith for Brennan (35 mins), Emma Griffin for McNulty (45 mins), Saoirse Byrne for Whelan (50 mins), Fial Dalton for Dempsey (50 mins), Eleanor Holland for Aird (50 mins), Finola Keogh for Hynes (53 mins).