WILTON continued their march towards yet another GE Healthcare CWSSL women's senior Premier league title with a 4-1 win over a spirited Carrigaline side at Pat Bowdren Park last Wednesday evening.
But had to rely on three second-half goals to ensure the win and all three points.
Carrigaline have had a difficult season in the premier league, but have steadily improved with each passing game, and were up against current champions and league leaders who were expecting to win with relative ease.
However, for most of the first half Wilton were on the back foot as the visitors took the game to their more illustrious opponents and within four minutes had taken the lead when Rebekah Grant’s shot from 25 yards out sailed over the Wilton keeper Ailbhe Moloney and in the back of the net.
Wilton pressed forward in an effort to get back into the game, with chances falling to Eleanor Stritch, Carys Johnson and Catherine Cooke, with Laura Lynch having two chances in as many minutes which were well covered by Claire O’Sullivan in the Carrigaline goal.
O’Sullivan saved from Stritch right on the far post, but the home side were being frustrated by a dogged Carrigaline side who battled for every ball with three defenders surrounding a Wilton player every time they came within sight of goal.
However, a cross from Stritch on the far corner was met by Melissa Finn who sent the ball past O’Sullivan from close range which brought a sigh of relief from the home side who had taken 39 minutes to break down the Carrigaline defence.
The second half belonged to Wilton as they began to dominate play and confining Carrigaline in their own half for some considerable time.
Lynch had a shot on goal which was deflected for a corner, while moments later Stritch managed to weave past O’Sullivan who somehow managed to hold onto the ball from a rebound in the 49th minute.
The home side continued to press with Lynch’s effort coming off the crossbar and O’Sullivan doing exceptionally well saving from Cooke and Stritch.
Wilton eventually took the lead in the 65th minute when Catherine Cooke’s low shot on the edge of the area found the back of the Carrigaline net, and five minutes later had added a third when Cooke hit her second of the evening despite O’Sullivan saving from Stritch’s first shot on goal.
Carrigaline attempted to get back into the game with Sarah O’Neill’s cross being met by Wilton keeper Moloney ahead of Grant who had another chance racing towards goal but her effort went wide of the Wilton post.
Wilton’s Lynch’s header from a corner went just over the crossbar while Carrigaline’s Rebekah Grant had a quick snap shot on the edge of the area which was covered by Moloney.
Wilton continued to press forward and their fourth came three minutes from time when Eleanor Stritch ran through the Carrigaline back line and managed to round the Carrigaline keeper and score from 10 yards.
Carrigaline had a chance in the final minute, but Abbie Coughlan’s 25 yard free kick went just over, but they can be particularly pleased with their performance on the day as Wilton prevailed.
Wilton: Ailbhe Maloney, Grace O’Driscoll, Niamh O’Regan, Deirdre Calanan, Laura Lynch, Carys Johnson, Catherine Cooke, Barbara O’Connell, Lydia Cooney, Melissa Finn, Eleanor Stritch, Emma O’Driscoll, Nora Dennehy, Amy Gettings
Carrigaline: Claire O’Sullivan, Ali Duggan, Laura O’Flynn, Chloe McCarthy, Abbie Coughlan, Anna Field, Laura O’Callaghan, Aoife Claffey, Sarah O’Neill, Rebekah Grant, Saoirse Clifford, Hayley Fitzgerald, Tara Maher, Millie Fitzgerald, Fay Walsh, Holly Fitzgerald
Referee: Daniel Murphy.