There will be a new name on the trophy for the O’Neills All-Ireland Post Primary Schools’ Junior A Camogie Championship after St Mary’s New Ross came through their Semi-Final with St Brigid’s Loughrea on a scoreline of 2-9 to 1-5 and St Angela’s Ursuline Convent became the first ever Waterford school to reach an A grade final by taking out last year’s beaten finalists Cross & Passion Ballycastle at the Waterford IT grounds on Saturday.
However, had the Ulster champions been more accurate from placed balls they might well have stayed in contention long enough to get over the line and kept the school’s double hopes alive, with the Seniors having secured their place in the decider last weekend.
Having said that, the visitors’ goalkeeper Becky Ellis was busy – and excellent – for a good part of a closel-fought encounter.
Elsewhere Enya McShane, Katie Laverty, Cassie McArthur and Nuala Devlin had excellent games for CPC while Aoife Fitzgerald’s accuracy from frees kept her team just ahead.
Riana McBride opened Ballycastle’s account with an early point and the visitors had a couple of goal chances before the Ursulines capitalised on their chances. Fitzgerald’s point was quickly followed by a goal from Clodagh Curham and still only six minutes played.
Áine Magill hit back with a fine individual point and the teams were level at 1-2 each after Annie Lynn cut through the Waterford defence for a goal.
Play after that became a little fractured with only three more points scored before the break, the home side taking a single point lead into the second half.
However they opened up a match-winning gap by scoring 1-4 without reply during the third quarter, Alisha Flynn the goalscorer.
Laverty moved into defence for Ballycastle and sub Fionnuala Kelly added energy. Alicia Butler’s goal eight minutes from the end gave them a lifeline.
However St Angela’s pulled back sweepers and Fitzgerald cemented her team’s position with a late free.