Kilkenny College became the first side to qualify for the Kate Russell All-Ireland schoolgirl’s championship when they completed the South East league and cup double with a 4-0 win over Loreto Kilkenny last week.
After a number of years in the wilderness, it makes it back-to-back titles for College after they overcame Loreto, Wexford a year ago.
This year, the opposition were their marble city rivals on the Castlecomer Road. Having garnered the league title a couple of weeks earlier in impressive fashion, College went into the tie as favourites but Loreto made much of the early running, winning the first corner of the game.
This was efficiently dealt with as the contest settled down into an even competition until College made the breakthrough via youth international Emma Duncan fired home a rebound.
And her side stamped their superiority on the tie early in the second half via two quick goals from corners scored by Amanda Haslam and Duncan on the mark.
Haslam added a fourth late in the match, making it a mountain for Loreto to climb but the girls from across the Nore never gave up with several forays forward, forcing Clodagh Cassin into a series of saves in order to maintain her clean sheet. They go into the Kate Russell on March 21 and 22 which Kilkenny College will host.
Kilkenny College: Kim Pratt (Co-Capt.),
Anna Boland (co-Capt.),
Lauren Thomas, Keri Willis,
Clodagh Cassin (GK)
Alison Caldbeck (GK)
Coach: Richard Willis; Manager: Lesley Threlfall.