Milford 3-14 Ballygarvan 1-9
MILFORD bounced back from a first-round drubbing at the hands of Courcey Rovers to record a superb victory over Ballygarvan in the SE Systems Senior championship in Castle Road.
Ballygarvan lost out narrowly in their opening game to St Finbarr’s and with Milford missing five of last season’s starting 15, it looked as if they would have a mountain to climb. Backboned by experienced campaigners, the Watson sisters Aine, Marie and Eimear, Ashling Thompson, Deirdre Hayes, Katie Galvin and Sarah Sexton they played with huge determination to secure their place in round two against Sarsfields.
With Thompson lining out at midfield but playing deep, Milford stopped Ballygarvan’s attack from their running game and at the other end they used the width of Castle Road to huge effect.
Inside seven minutes they led by four points with Eimear Watson (3) and Laura Stack on song. Molly Kelleher had one back for Ballygarvan and battling hard with Cliona O’Leary converting three frees while Rebecca Murphy hit one from play: 0-5 apiece.
Milford lost Aine Watson with a leg injury but rolled up the sleeves and got on with it. Stack edged them in front before O’Leary took on the Milford defence and crashed the ball to the net to give Ballygarvan the lead.
It was short-lived as Eimear Watson pointed twice and it was all square at the break 1-5 to 0-8.
The sides swapped early points and Ballygarvan had a let-off when Milford missed a golden goal opportunity on five minutes but seconds later Stack won a great ball and powered an unstoppable shot to the net.
Three points without reply saw Milford open up a six-point lead.
Ballygarvan responded but two Eimear O’Gorman goals had Milford coasting home before Eimear Watson palmed the ball over the bar for the final say.
Scorers for Milford: E Watson 0-10 (0-5 f, 0-1 45), E O’Gorman 2-0, L Stack 1-3, S Sheehan 0-1.
Ballygarvan: C O’Leary 1-3 (0-3 f), I O’Regan 0-2, S Wynne, R Murphy, M Buckley, M Kelleher 0-1each.
MILFORD: C Buckley; D Hayes, K Galvin, A Galvin; S Sexton, A Watson, O Lenihan; O O’Mahony, A Thompson (c); E O’Gorman, E Watson, M Fitzgibbon; M Watson, L Stack, S Sheehan.
Subs: N O’Connor for A Watson (inj 17), A Hayes for L Stack (56).
BALLYGARVAN: S Ahern; S Lyons, E Ryan, S Wynne; L Browne, L Kennefick, A Keohane (c); E O’ Regan, A Moynihan; C O’Leary, I O’Regan, M Buckley; M Kelleher, R Murphy, SJ Brady.
Subs: K Dorney for E Ryan (h-t), E Bateman for S Lyons (46), S Elliffe for S J Brady (57), R Crowley for M Kelleher (58).
Referee: Willie Wallace (Aghada).