Portlaoise kicked off the new season last Wednesday taking on Kilkenny II in Kilkenny College under lights.
Kilkenny II 1
The first half was action packed from the outset with both teams eager to make a good start to the season. However it was Portlaoise that gained the early advantage after Orla Dywer scored from a rebounded short corner in the early stages of the first half.
Kilkenny attacked strongly in an attempt to even the score however an interception by Grainne Dunne for Portlaoise turned the direction of the attack and saw Orla Dwyer score her second goal of the season.
As the first half was drawing to a close Kilkenny’s endeavours were rewarded and they broke through Portlaoise’s defence, leaving the score at 2-1 at half time.
In the second half the game moved at a slower pace. Portlaoise, who had been strong in attack in the first half, took on a more defensive role. Kilkenny relentlessly attacked the Portlaoise goal and won several short corners, which they failed to convert into scores.
For the rest of the second half Portlaoise remained under attack but the experienced back line, of Karen Fingleton, Sandra Cushen, Marian Boyle and Kelly O’Sullivan, prohibited any change to the score line.
On several occasions midfielders, Hilda Dooley and Eimear Dunne built play into an attack however these attacks were filtered out without significant threat to the Kilkenny goal.
Thus the game ended as it had at half time with Portlaoise 2-1 ahead to secure a win in their first game of the season.