Railway Union win Jacqui Potter Cup final
Kate McKenna’s goal seals a sixth success in the competition in nine years
Hannah De Burgh Whyte: scored Railway’s first goal against Old Alex via a penalty in action. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho
Railway Union 2 (H de Burgh Whyte, K McKenna) Old Alex 1 (A Connery)
Kate McKenna’s goal out of nothing continued Railway Union’s dominance in the Jacqui Potter Cup as they won the silverware for the sixth time in nine years.
They just about prevailed against an Old Alex side inspired by the brilliant Aine Connery and Lisa Jacob who agonisingly missed last ditch chances to send the tie to a shoot-out.
As it was, McKenna’s snap-shot from breaking ball in the 45th minute – following a hopeful ball from Niamh Shaw that was miscontrolled – decided the day.
She was one of two All-Ireland ladies football senior champions on show along with Molly Lamb and showed her relish for the big stage.
Recent years have seen Railway benefit in this final from opponents missing players due to international commitments but they were the ones down key players this time with Sarah Hawkshaw and Anna May Whelan on the sidelines.
Nonetheless, the Sandymount side started the better with Zara Delany bounding forward at every opportunity. They hit the front in the 21st minute from a penalty stroke, awarded for an Alex body blocking a shot on goal, Hannah de Burgh Whyte doing the necessary.
Alex bossed the second half, however, and were level following Jacob’s beautiful spin to lay off to Emma Russell whose nudge was finished off by Connery.
Railway got their instant reply before spending much of the last 25 minutes on the back foot, including a last second chance for Spanish exchange student Paula Pena.
The holders clung on, however, to continue their brilliant run in this competition.
Old Alex: P Smithwick, A Connery, P Diepman, A Connery, R Evans, L Jacob, E Russell, H McDermott, E Duncan, E Hinkson, F McDermott
Subs: R Gray, L Lenehan, H Kelly, R Kelly, P Pena
Railway Union: C Crampton, O Fox, E Lucey, H Jenkinson, J Long, K Lloyd, K Fearon, M Lamb, N Shaw, N Sweeney, Z Delany
Subs: H de Burgh Whyte, K McKenna, K Orr, C McCullough, L Lloyd