The Galway minor camogie team enjoyed a winning start to the Electric Ireland Minor A Championship on Sunday when they overcame Waterford in Duggan Park by 3-10 to 2-6, and next up is a home game against Kilkenny on Sunday.
In a new format to this year’s minor championship, Galway play every team in the Minor A championship, with all six teams battling it out for four semi-final positions.
The minor team, under the guidance of Aaron Fox, has plenty of experience, such as joint captain Ava Crowe, Alannah Fahy and Aoibheann Barry who featured in last year's All Ireland Minor A final, while Ciara McGrath and Caoimhe Kelly are fresh from All-Ireland success with their club Sarsfields.
Galway were quick out of the blocks on Sunday with Fahy finding the back of the net in the opening minute after fighting hard to win the ball from the Waterford defence. Waterford, however, did not panic and responded with a free from Maggie Gostl and a well-taken point from play by Alannah McNulty.
Kelly delivered a fantastic cross-field ball to Fahy, who, in plenty of space made no mistake with a point, before Barry delivered first free on the 13th minute to leave it 1-2 to 0-2 in favour of Galway.
A minute later, a long ball in from midfield found Gostl, who batted the ball on the run into the back of the net to leave the sides deadlocked halfway through the half. Galway responded well with Kelly and Massey teaming up to set Barry up for a well-taken point on the sideline. Gostl replied with a point for Waterford to leave the sides deadlocked on 1-3.
Galway finished the half the strongest. Clodagh O’Meara worked hard in the Galway attack and was rewarded with a point on the 20th minute. Then two minutes later, a long ball from Ciara McGrath in the Galway defence found Barry who went on a solo run from the 45m line and blasted the ball into the back of the net for Galway’s second major of the day. Barry and Gostl exchanged frees on the 24th and 31st minutes, while Kelly's hard work was rewarded with a point from play just before the break to leave it Galway 2-6 Waterford 1-3.
A Barry point from play opened the scoring for Galway before Eimear O’Neill replied for Waterford with a point from play, and when Gostl scored her fourth free the score stood at 2-7 to 1-5 with 18 minutes.
Barry, Galway’s top scorer on the day, scored Galway’s first point in 11 minutes with a point in the 44th minute, and it was nip a tuck with both defences well on top and scores hard to come by.
Bevin Bowdern forced Caoimhe Hickey to pull off a great save in the Galway net on the 50th minute with Hickey deflecting the ball out for a 45. However, Gostl lobbed in the resulting 45 into the square. While Hickey did get a block on it, the block resulted in the ball bouncing off the astro turf in the goal mouth and into the back of the Galway net to leave it Galway 2-8 Waterford 2-6 with nine minutes left on the clock.
Galway needed a big finish, and Barry added two more frees on the 52nd and 54th minutes, and three minutes later a long ball in from substitute Therese Marie Murray was won in the air by Massey, who laid off to the oncoming Fahy who blasted the net for her second goal of the day to finish the game in Galway's favour Galway 3-10 Waterford 2-6.
Galway: C Hickey, S Kelly, A Crowe, K Scully, G Leen, C McGrath, Z Rogers, L Nic Donnacha, A Massey, A Barry (1-7, 0-5F ), C Kelly (0-1 ), C O’Meara (0-1 ), A Fahy (2-1 ), K Madden, A Collins. Subs: TM Murray for Nic Donnacha (37m ), C Glynn for A Collins (39m ), H Tarpey for Madden (45m ), K Earner for Leen (59m )
Waterford: K Gardner; A Healy, F Murphy, L Forrest; J Kirwan, M Buck, H McGrath; K Obanya, A McNulty (0-1 ); C Sherlock, N Halley, B Bowdern; M Gostl (2-4, 0-3F, 1-0 45 ), K Lyons, E O’Neill (0-1 ). Subs used: K O’Neill for McGrath (45m ), N Ryan for Halley (55m ), H O’Sullivan for Lyons (59m ).
Referee: Liz Dempsey (Kilkenny )