Player of the Match Casey led the charge for Inniscarra to retain their title
Two goals inside the opening three minutes from player of the match Joanne Casey set Inniscarra up to retain the SE Systems Cork Camogie Senior Championship title for 2017, but it wasn’t all one way traffic for the defending champions as Glen Rovers ensured they were pushed all the way.
The game sprung to life for the defending champions on three minutes when Casey blasted to the net twice within a minute. The first, a sublime shot when a move that started deep in defence was collected by Niamh McCarthy on 30 metres who spotted Casey all alone on the 20 and didn’t hesitate in laying off a pass that saw Casey blast to the net. Within a minute Casey had the sliotar in the back of the net again, this time after collecting a ball in from Aileen Sheehan and firing home to see Inniscarra two goals up before the Glen had any chance to respond.
Nora O’Riordan and Treasa McCarthy exchanged points before the Glen began to spring into action and pull themselves into the game. In a 10 minute spell they cut the deficit to just two points with Nicole O’Brien launching the claw back with a pointed dead ball 45 metres out on 11. Three minutes later Michaela Hyde split the posts, before O’Brien fired over a 20 metre free. Emma Murphy split the posts with a great score on the run to see the score 2-02 to 0-05 on 14. Six minutes later, Denise Luby who showed composure and skill on the goal line controlled and cleared to ensure the Glen didn’t concede during their 10 minute purple patch. When O’Riordan split the posts after a strong run on 21 the game was well and truly on with just two between the sides. Inniscarra looking tired from a week of challenging fixtures, dug deep however, and through a Casey brace there were four between the sides in as many minutes. On 27 Niamh McCarthy fired Innsicarra five clear when she dispossessed her opponent, collected and pointed. Casey on free taking duty pointed a 40 metre free on 28 before the Glens Katie Walsh raised a white flag just on the cusp of the break. Inniscarra headed to the dressing room leading 2-06 to 0-07.
Inniscarra doubled their lead shortly after the resumption through a Casey placed ball and a Rebecca Keane tight angled point to see Inniscarra 2-08 to 0-07 ahead. Once again however, O’Brien on free taking duty led the way in the Glen responding when she pointed a 40 metre free on 39. Dilworth operating at the edge of the square picked off a point on 45 during a period where scores were hard to come by as the outfield battle intensified. Casey fired over a long range free on 50 to see Inniscarra 2-10 to 0-08 to the good heading into the closing 10 minutes. However, the Glen once again showed their ability to resurrect themselves and carved into the Inniscarra lead when Murphy fired to the net on 51, Hyde pointed from close range and an O’Brien 30 metre free had the Glen within three of Inniscarra on 53. Once again, and proving champions die hard, Inniscarra dug deep and responded with three unanswered points through a Casey free and fine effort from play either side of a hard earned Dilworth effort to see them successfully defend their title, but not after being pushed all the way by a young and skilful Glen side. Full time Inniscarra 2-13, Glen Rovers 1-10.
Inniscarra: S. Walsh, M. Buckley (capt.), C. Looney, R. Quigley, G. Heffernan, R. Buckley, A. Kavanagh, K. O’Mahony, A. Sheehan, T. McCarthy, J. Casey, E. Looney, R. Keane, N. Dilworth, N. McCarthy
Glen Rovers: D. Luby, S. Fahy, K. Falvey, Z. Buckley, K. O’Connell, L. O’Sullivan (capt.) K. Buckley, L. Cunningham, L. Callanan, A. Wallace, N. O’Brien, K. Walsh, M. Hyde, E. Murphy, N. O’Riordan
Subs: C. Boland for Z Buckley (28), D. O’Neill for K. Walsh (39).
Inniscarra: J. Casey 2-07 (0-04f), N. Dilworth 0-02, T. McCarthy 0-01, K. O’Mahony 0-01, N. McCarthy 0-01, R. Keane 0-01.
Glen Rovers: E. Murphy 1-01, N. O’Brien 0-04 (0-04f), N. O’Riordan 0-02, M. Hyde 0-02, K. Walsh 0-01.
Referee: Diarmuid Kirwin, Éire Óg