Goals from Rianna Jarrett and Jenny Clifford in the space of five second-half minutes set champions Wexford Youths on their way to victory in their Só Hotels Women’s National League opener on a miserably wet evening at Ferrycarrig Park.

Jarrett then wrapped up what was ultimately a convincing win with 14 minutes remaining with her second, as she blasted a penalty beyond the reach of goalkeeper Erica Turner.

It looked like it could be a difficult evening for the Slaneysiders, as they struggled to create anything of note in the opening 45 minutes, but once Jarrett grabbed the opening goal just before the hour mark the result never really looked in doubt.

The hosts were given an early warning when Catherine Cronin fizzed a shot across the face of goal after just 15 seconds, while Rianna Jarrett had a similar effort at the other end with eight minutes on the clock after being fed by Aisling Frawley and outmuscling the Waves defence.

DLR Waves enjoyed plenty of possession in the early exchanges as the champions took their time to find their feet, with plenty of passes going astray, although Orla Casey did warm the gloves of Erica Turner in the 26th minute in a rare threatening moment in the first-half.

The visitors had another minor scare four minutes before the break when an inswinging Doireann Fahey corner clipped the top of the crossbar.

The deadlock was eventually broken in the 60th minute and DLR Waves contributed to their own downfall as their attempt to play a short kick-out was pounced upon by Wexford Youths.

Lauren Kelly got a foot in to win back possession and when the ball fell into the path of Rianna Jarrett there was only ever going to be one outcome as the ace attacker calmly slid the ball to the corner of the net.

Fours minutes later and the lead was doubled, with Jarrett turning provider to tee up new signing Jenny Clifford, who squeezed the ball past Erica Turner.

It was game, set and match in the 77th minute, when Jarrett blasted a penalty to the left-hand corner of the net after referee Nicholas Boland had pointed to the spot and the visitors were left with a further sour taste in their mouths when Keelin McEntee was shown a red card late on.

It may not have been the prettiest performance from Tom Elmes' side, with the conditions not helping matters, but they'll settle for any sort of win at this juncture, and have plenty to build on after shaking off the cobwebs of the off season.

Wexford Youths: Sophie Lenehan, Nicola Sinnott, Orlaith Conlon, Doireann Fahey, Aisling Frawley, Aoife Slattery (Edel Kennedy 54), Kylie Murphy (capt.), Lauren Kelly, Orla Casey (Sarah McKevitt 77), Jenny Clifford (Katrina Parrock 66), Rianna Jarrett.

DLR Waves: Erica Turner, Keelin McEntee, Alison O'Keeffe, Roisin McGovern, Katie Burgess, Ciara Maher (Kerri Letmon 78), Sinead Gaynor (Aisling Spillane 30), Nadine Clare, Catherine Cronin (capt.), Rachael Doyle (Jenny O'Keeffe 84), Leanne Payne.

Referee: Nicholas Boland.

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