Ladies: Waterford brush aside Cork for first league victory

February 18, 2024

Waterford's Katie Murray. ©INPHO/Bryan Keane.

Waterford 2-12 
Cork 1-6

by Anthony Newman

Waterford picked up their first points in the Lidl Ladies NFL after they brushed aside the challenge of Cork at Pairc Ui Rinn. 

The visitors dominated from start to finish with Cork unable to live with their running game, led by the likes of Aine O’Neill, Kellyann Hogan and Clare Walsh, and they are now drawn firmly into the relegation battle. 

Waterford were on the front foot from the outset and O’Neill opened the scoring in the first minute as they gained possession from the throw-in. 

She added a second five minutes later as the visitors were enjoying the better of the opening exchanges. 

Cork were finding it hard to make inroads as Waterford were defending well and driving forward at pace. 

They added a third point through Hogan in the sixth minute as Cork were yet to have a shot at goal. 

They got on the score board after 10 minutes when Daire Kiely was quickest to react to the breaking ball from a Ellie Jack free. 

The width of the post prevented Waterford from going further ahead when Walsh’s effort rebounded out rather than into the net. 

But Waterford were still dominating and Katie Murray pointed, to make it 0-4 to 0-1 after 12 minutes. 

Hogan increased their lead and from the restart they regained possession with O’Neill finding the back of the net to put Waterford in control by 1-5 to 0-1. 

Walsh hit the post again before Hogan raised another white flag before the former finally got on the scoring sheet to make it 1-7 to 0-1. 

Lauren McGregor stretched their lead further as Cork were finding it hard to cope with Waterford’s running game. 

Just before half-time Brid McMaugh pointed from a free for Waterford to put them well in control at half-time as they led by 1-9 to 0-1. 

Early points from Kiely and Sadhbh O’Leary reduced the deficit but it wasn’t long before Waterford stamped their authority on the game again, when Walsh got their second goal. 

Hogan hit two more points and with 40 minutes gone the game was well and truly over as a contest as Waterford led by 2-11 to 0-3. 

Walsh added a point before Abigail Ring got Cork’s fourth point from a free to make it 2-12 to 0-4 after 50 minutes. 

By then Cork had brought on 12 subs but it made little or no difference as Waterford were by far the better team. 

Lydia McDonagh got a late goal for Cork but it was no more than a consolation score as Waterford outplayed and outclassed their opponents from start to finish. 

Scorers - Waterford: C Walsh, A O’Neill 1-2 each, K Hogan 0-5 (1f), K Murray, L McGregor, B McMaugh (f) 0-1 each. 

Cork: L McDonagh 1-0, D Kiely 0-2 (2f), A Ring 0-3 (3f), S O’Leary 0-1. 

WATERFORD: E O’Brien; H Power, E Power, A Murray; C Walsh, A McNulty, A O’Neill; E Murray, K Hogan; K McGrath, C Carroll, M O’Brien; B McMaugh, K Murray, L McGregor. Subs: C Murray for C Carroll (35), L O’Shea for M O’Brien (45), C McCarthy for B McMaugh, A Brazil for L McGregor (both 48), M Comeford for C Walsh (52), O Kennedy for A O’Neill, N Power for A McNulty, D Shanley for E Power (all 56), E Bolger for K Murray (59), A Reynolds for K Hogan, N Whelan for A Murray, K Brazil for H Power (all 60). 

CORK: S Murphy; M Duggan, S Leahy, D Kiniry; K Redmond, A Healy, A Ryan; M O’Callaghan, S Cronin; E Jack, L Coppinger, L O’Mahony; S O’Leary, H Looney, D Kiely. Subs: E Cleary for A Ryan (20), A Ring for L O’Mahony, E Twomey for D Kiniry, K O’Driscoll for L O’Mahony, L McDonagh for L Coppinger (all ht), A McDonagh for S Cronin, L Hallihan for S O’Leary (both 35), A Corcoran for H Looney, E Hurley for K Redmond (both 41), K Smith for D Kiely (45), R Corkery for A Healy (46), A O’Mahony for M O’Callaghan (48).   

Referee: Jonathan Murphy (Carlow). 

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