Sligo made it back-to-back wins in the ladies national league on Sunday, beating Waterford in Cloonacool by 2-7 to 0-11.
Donegal lost their first game of the year, however, as they went down by a point, 2-13 to 2-12, away to Kerry.
And Leitrim also suffered their first defeat, losing out to Offaly by 2-13 to 4-3.
Sligo Ladies Secure Back To Back Home Wins
By Keith Gilroy
Full-time Sligo 2-07 Waterford 0-11
Half-time Sligo 0-04 Waterford 0-09
Cloonacool Community Park
Ref Garryown McMahon
After a week’s break Sligo Ladies were back in NFL action on Sunday when they welcomed Waterford to Cloonacool, they were hoping to add a second win to the one over Westmeath last time out.
Two second half goals from Ciara Gorman made sure Sligo came away with all three points on Sunday.
Sligo started the scoring when Stephanie O’Reilly pointed within a minute of the Start to give Sligo the lead, Sligo were the dominant side for the first 10 minutes but were guilty of wasting chances in front of goal, first a O’Reilly shot came back of the bar then Gorman seen her effort saved before Mary Ann O’Kennedy had a penalty save by Jessica Fitzgerald in the Waterford goal. Sligo’s second point came from a Gorman free after O’Reilly was fouled.
Waterford began to come in to the game with some two points each from Lauren McGregor and Ger Power to kick start Waterford and they were three points up on their host before O’Reilly pulled one back for the home side, two points each for Emma Murray and Nicola Fennell extended the Deise Lead to six points before Karen Maloney pulled one back to leave five points between the sides at the break.
Lauren McGregor converted a free for Waterford some 2 minutes into the second half. Strangely enough by the time their next store would arrive, they would be chasing g the game as Sligo took over in the scoring stakes but possession was evenly matched except the Home side appeared to be the better finishers.
Ciara German kick started the Sligo comeback with a 7th minute free. From the resulting kick, out Karen Maloney provided a boomer from distance to cut the gap to 4. A Ciara Gorman goal in the 9th minute had the gap down to one. Some five minutes later Sligo would hit the front when a super cross field pass from Karen Maloney picked out Ciara Gorman. Gorman’s point effort dipped at the 11th hour, deceiving the visitor’s keeper with the umpire going for the Green flag instead of the white one.
Gorman tagged on a free in the 16th minute to push the gap out to three. With Sligo defending their lead all Waterford could produce in the final quarter hour of the game was a point and 2 wides as Sligo held firm to insure a second league win of this campaign and edge Sligo closer to a semi-final place.
Next up for Sligo is a trip to Laois on Sunday next but for now Paddy and the crew can savour this latest win.
Sligo Team 1 Noelle Gormley 2 Michelle McNamara 3 Grainne O’Loughlin 4 Jacqui Mulligan 5 Etna Flanagan 6 Eilise Codd 7 Ann Marie Coleman 8 Bernice Byrne 9 Sarah Reynold’s 10 Laura Ann Laffey 11 Stephanie O’Reilly 12 Rachel Monaghan 13 Karen Maloney 14 Caira Gorman 15 Mary Ann O’Kennedy
Subs Used Katie Walsh for Monaghan Sarah McMoreland For Laffey Ruth Goodwin for Coleman
EPHIE Fitzgerald’s Cork won the battle of the All-Ireland finalists from the last three seasons to collect two valuable points in Division 1 of the Lidl Ladies National Football League.
On home soil in Mallow, Cork ran out 2-11 to 1-8 winners against visitors Dublin, a result that makes up for the surprise defeat to Armagh in round 2.
Cork, aiming for a fifth successive League crown, made it two wins from three in the group stages as All-Star Orla Finn helped herself to 1-7, all from frees.
Dublin got off to a brilliant start with an early goal from Lyndsey Davey but that was cancelled out by Finn’s goal midway through the half, an effort that handed the Rebelettes a 1-3 to 1-1 lead.
At half-time, Cork were ahead by just a single point, 1-5 to 1-4, but Dublin struggled to reel in the winners and Niamh Cotter netted a late penalty to make sure of the victory for Fitzgerald’s charges.
After two victories, this was Dublin’s first defeat of the season and at the end of round 3, four teams are locked together on six points – Dublin, Cork, Donegal and Galway.
Donegal also lost for the first time in the League campaign as Kerry held on for a 2-13 to 2-12 victory in Rathmore.
Donegal led by 1-10 to 1-6 at half-time but were caught after the break by a dogged Kerry, who won their first League game of the season.
Donegal held an early 0-4 to 0-0 lead but Louise Ní Mhuircheartaigh’s eighth-minute goal ignited the Kerry challenge.
Kerry pushed 1-4 to 0-5 clear but Paula McCrory’s goal hauled Donegal back into contention – and the visitors led by four points at the interval.
Kerry dominated the early second half exchanges but Donegal weathered the storm and Roisin Friel set lethal forward Geraldine McLaughlin clear for a counter-attack goal midway through the half.
A McLaughlin free had Donegal 2-11 to 1-9 in front but leading scorer Sarah Houlihan (0-8) steadied Kerry with a brace of points.
Donegal still looked comfortable but their challenge unravelled down the home straight as Ciara Hegarty was sent to the sin-bin before Kerry hit an unanswered 1-2 to seal the win, Laura Rogers scoring a priceless goal with two minutes left.
At Clonmore, Mayo finally got off the mark as Cora Staunton and Sarah Rowe bagged 3-11 between them in a 3-14 to 0-18 victory over home side Armagh.
At half-time, Staunton’s goal had Mayo in contention as they trailed by just a point, 1-6 to 0-10, against Aimee Mackin-inspired Armagh.
Mackin would finish with nine points for Armagh, including seven from play, but she also missed some chances in a well-contested game.
Rowe netted twice in the second half for Mayo as the Westerners, beaten League finalists last year, finally got off the mark this season.
And in Clones, Galway moved into contention with an impressive 3-12 to 1-13 victory over hosts Monaghan.
Goals from leading scorer Roisin Leonard (1-7), Lucy Hannon and Dora Gorman helped the Tribeswomen to secure a second victory from three League outings.
At half-time, the sides were level at 1-6 apiece – Gorman and Monaghan’s Laura McEnaney trading goals – before Galway pulled away.
Monaghan’s goal was a scruffy effort as the ball ping-ponged in the Galway goalmouth – but McEnaney was credited with the final touch.
Leonard’s second half goal had Galway in control and Monaghan suffered a blow when McEnaney was sin-binned for a clash with Sinead Burke, before Hannon’s cracking late goal sealed it for the Westerners.
In Division 2, there were wins on the road for Laois, Cavan and Westmeath, as Sligo defeated last year’s Division 3 champions Waterford at home.
In Division 3, Tipperary continued their impressive start to the season with victory over Down maintaining the Premier County’s 100 per cent start.
Offaly had a point to spare against Leitrim, Roscommon drew with Meath and Wexford beat Limerick.
And in Division 4, Louth, Longford, Wicklow and Carlow collected maximum points from their fixtures.
Lidl Ladies National Football League Division 1
Cork 2-11 Dublin 1-8
Armagh 0-18 Mayo 3-13
Monaghan 1-13 Galway 3-12
Kerry 2-13 Donegal 2-12
Lidl Ladies National Football League Division 2
Clare 0-12 Laois 2-14
Kildare 1-11 Cavan 1-17
Tyrone 1-10 Westmeath 3-8
Sligo 2-7 Waterford 0-11
Lidl Ladies National Football League Division 3
Tipperary 5-14 Down 0-3
Offaly 2-13 Leitrim 4-3
Wexford 4-13 Limerick 3-3
Roscommon 2-9 Meath 1-12
Lidl Ladies National Football League Division 4
Louth 2-8 Antrim 1-8
Longford 0-36 Derry 1-3
Fermanagh 1-6 Wicklow 3-17
Carlow 5-20 Kilkenny 2-4