Kildare continued their inexorable rise up camogie’s ranks with a commanding 2-11 to 1-05 victory over midland rivals Laois to claim the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland junior camogie title at a wet and windswept Croke Park.
The All Whites burst out of the traps with points from player of the match Siobhán Hurley and 18-year-old Melissa Lyons inside two minutes. Susie O’Carroll, Róisín O’Connell and Hurley (free) added to their tally and it was the 24th minute by the time Laois got off the mark through a Louise Mahony free.
Kildare were not making the most of their possession and would not have been happy going in at the break leading by just 0-06 to 0-02.
Their mood was not improved by a 32nd minute goal from Laois substitute Grace O’Neill, whose powerful shot dropped inside the upright despite the best attempts of Saileóg O’Keeffe.
The Lilies responded like champions though with star full-forward Susie O’Carroll hitting two goals in a minute to put the tie to rest.
The first came after good work from O’Connell and Lyons, and the second, saw the Celbridge sharpshooter read a long delivery best before drilling a low shot beyond Laura Dunne.
It was plain sailing from there as Hurley and Lyons added points and though Mahony slotted a couple of frees, while Laois never looked like getting the goals they needed to turn it around.
Kildare: S O’Keeffe, J Donoghue, A Trant, N Concannon; F Trant, C Nolan, A Lyons, C Forde, O Bambury, L Keatley, S Hurley (0-5, 2f), C Flanagan; M Lyons, S O’Carroll (2-2), R O’Connell (0-1).
Subs: H Mulligan for Concannon (46), C MacSweeney (0-1) for M Lyons (0-2 ) (54)’, N Breen for F Trant (59), C Farrell for Keatley (60+2)
Laois: L Dunne, M Burke, K Cuddy, A Dunphy, J Dollard, SA Fitzgerald, E Delaney, C Walsh, E Mahony, J Dunne, D Quigley, L Mahony (0-3f), S Burke, N Dollard (0-2), O Parkinson.
Subs: G O’Neill (1-0) for Dunne (30), S Cuddy for Walsh (ht), C Downey for Burke (42), S Lanham for Parkinson (52), R Bermingham for J Dollard (60).
Referee: D Ryan (Dublin).