Enniscorthy recently hosted the South East division II hockey cup final between Portlaoise and Kilkenny II.
The determination of both sides was evident from the start, with both sides attacking aggressively at every given opportunity. As the game settled Portlaoise took charge of the right hand side of the pitch with some strong play created through Marian O’Boyle and worked up the pitch by Hilda Dooley and Eimear Dunne.
This attack pressured the Kilkenny defense and opened up their back line. Portlaoise took advantage of the opening and Orla Dwyer crossed the ball from the top left of the circle to the right post where Grainne Dunne took on the keeper and put Portlaoise 1-0 up before the half time whistle.
The second half began in much the same way as the first, both sides played at high intensity trying to find weaknesses in the other side’s defense, but both sides held strong.
Approximately 10 minutes into the second half Kilkenny gained an opportunity to draw the sides level. Portlaoise were harshly disciplined for an unintentional foul outside their immediate defense area and Kilkenny were awarded a penalty short corner. Portlaoise’s defenders were fractionally too slow out on a corner that was not well taken and score was brought to one all.
Portlaoise then began to attack up the left side of the pitch through short sharp passes between Susan Fingleton and Ailbhe Booth, this attack forced a foul from Kilkenny and Portlaoise were awarded a penalty short corner.
A collaborative effort between Orla Dwyer and Laura Dowling during this penalty saw Portlaoise once again take the lead. Although Kilkenny tried hard to get back in the game in the last few minutes,
Portlaoise maintained the lead to the final whistle to take the cup for the second year running.
Portlaoise: Alison Bailey, Shiree Birney, Karen Fingleton, Marian O’Boyle, Ailbhe Booth, Susan Fingleton, Laura Dowling(1), Eimear Dunne, Hilda Dooley, Jen Carter, Emma Lawlor, Grainne Dunne(1), Anna Booth, Jen Carter.