Lidl Ladies’ NFL: Armagh, Cavan, Tyrone and Fermanagh claim maximum points

Monaghan and Donegal suffered defeats in Division Two

Clodagh McCambridge
New skipper: Clodagh McCambridge of Armagh wins possession from Laura O'Mahony of Cork during last year's TG4 All-Ireland Ladies' SFC quarter-final at the BOX-IT Athletic Grounds in Armagh Picture: Ben McShane/Sportsfile (Ben McShane / SPORTSFILE/SPORTSFILE)

Division One

Armagh got their second win in Division One at Páirc Ui Rinn when they scored a two-point win over Cork.

They went in front after just three minutes from a penalty and they were never behind from there. Cork got level a number of times but they never took the lead as the visitors deservedly held on.

Armagh took the lead when they were awarded a penalty for a foul by Libby Coppinger on Louise Kenny.Aimee Mackin duly dispatched to the top corner.

However, their lead didn’t last long with Hannah Looney playing in Daire Kiely for the game’s second green flag to make it a goal apiece.

Mackin put the visitors back in front with a well-taken free and she increased their lead with their first score from play, to make it 1-2 to 1-0.

Katie Quirke, who got all Cork’s scores against Galway, got off the mark after 12 minutes to put one between the sides.

From the restart Armagh had a chance for a goal when Lauren McConville drove forward from centre-back. She looked to play Kenny in, but Murphy was quickly off her line to intercept the pass and clear the danger.

But Cork were finding it hard to stop Mackin as she hit another outstanding score from distance to make it 1-3 to 1-1.

Meadhbh Byrne of Meath celebrates after scoring her side’s first goal during yesterday’s 2-5 to 0-7 win over Dublin at Páirc Tailteann  Picture: David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile
Meath v Dublin - Lidl LGFA National League Division 1 Round 2 28 January 2024; Meadhbh Byrne of Meath celebrates after scoring her side's first goal during the Lidl LGFA National League Division 1 Round 2 match between Meath and Dublin at Páirc Tailteann in Navan, Meath. Photo by David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile (David Fitzgerald / SPORTSFILE/SPORTSFILE)

Sadhbh O’Leary got Cork’s second point to put only one between them again, before Quirke had the sides level after 20 minutes.

Just before half-time Murphy made another great save, this time denying Kelly Mallon, before Caroline O’Hanlon got the last score of the half to see Armagh lead by one, 1-4 to 1-3 at the break.

Emily Druse and then McConville twice stretched the lead to two but both times Quirke replied before with 10 minutes to go Niamh Murray split the posts.

Armagh were denied another goal when Murphy pulled off the save of the game to deny Mallon what looked like a green flag but Aoife McCoy rounded off the scoring as Armagh came out on top by 1-8 to 1-6.

Division Two

TYRONE scored an injury-time winner to seal a one-point win (1-7 to 0-9) win over Tipperary in O’Neill’s Healy Park yesterday.

Maria Canavan’s goal in the first half, four minutes from the break, put them on level terms, 1-3 to 0-6.

Maria Canavan has been in fine form for Errigal Ciaran
Errigal Ciaran footballer Maria Canavan Household name:

Tipperary, who are genuine title contenders, had been 0-6 to 0-3 in front but Tyrone vice-captain Chloe McCafrey and Emma Jane Gervin had been keeping their side in touch.

Tipperary extended their lead out to two within six minutes of the resumption and it remained a two-point game as it entered the last quarter, 0-9 to 1-4.

The visitors though failed to find the target after that, and three unanswered points saw Tyrone get back on level terms before hitting a 63rdminute winner.

Sean O’Kane’s side are now two wins from two and share top spot with Kildare.

Donegal suffered a 1-8 to 1-4 defeat to Kildare in Letterkenny.

Roisin Byrne hit 1-5 for the visitors, including a vital second-half goal, with Neasa Dooley getting the insurance score to ensure the newly-promoted Leinster side, made it two wins from two.

This was a nip-and-tuck battle, with never more than a kick of the ball between the side until the final minutes.

Donegal led 1-3 to 0-5 at half-time, Katie Dowds’ 14th-minute goal giving John McNulty’s side the narrowest of half-time advantages.

The sides were level three times in the first half. Dowds’ goal opened up a 1-1 to 0-1 gap but three in-a-row from the visitors had them back on level terms before the sides traded points again. But it was Shannon McLaughlin who had the final say of the half to keep Donegal’s noses in front.

The home side only managed a single point in the second half, from Amy Boyle Carr, to level the scores for the fifth time after Kildare hit two without reply to move in front for the first time since the opening minutes.

Donegal lost McLaughlin to the sin-bin before that 1-1 from Byrne and Neasa Dooley, sealed a memorable win for the Lilywhites.

Cavan bounced back from their opening defeat with a confidence boosting 0-9 to 0-6 win over Laois in Knockbride.

The Breffni girls, playing with the wind at their backs, led 0-4 to 0-2 at half-time, and despite having to play against it in the next second half, they hit five more points.

Laois brought it back to one by the 38th minute, 0-5 to 0-4, but three without reply, two of those from Niamh McCorry and the other from Sinead Levingstone put Mickey O’Rourke’s side ahead by double scores, 0-8 to 0-4 with 10 minutes remaining.

Mo Nerney (free) pulled Laois back to three, but McCorry stepped up again to raise another white flag, and although Laois got the final score, Cavan saw out the win.

A late rally was not enough for Monaghan as they lost 4-10 to 2-13 to Westmeath in Castleblayney.

The Farney found themselves 12 points adrift, 4-9 to 1-6, at the end of the third quarter, before outscoring their opponents 1-7 to 0-1 in the final 15 minutes to come back to three points, before time ran out for Darren Greenan’s charges.

Monaghan made the perfect start with a goal from Sarah Tierney and they led 1-3 to 0-2 after 11 minutes before Rachel Dillon’s goal in the 12th minute followed by a Leanne Slevin free had the visitors level.

Their second goal four minutes from the end of the half proved crucial to help them to a 2-5 to 1-4 lead at the break.

Chloe Kelly’s major three minutes into the second half pushed Westmeath’s advantage out to eight, 3-6 to 1-4, and with Monaghan under severe pressure, 1-3 without reply, Vicky Carr with Westmeath’s fourth goal, opened up that healthy 12-point lead, 4-9 to 1-6.

Darren Greenan
At the helm: Darren Greenan will lead Monaghan seniors in 2024 (David Fitzgerald / SPORTSFILE/SPORTSFILE)

However, Eabha Sherry found the back of the net for Monaghan and although Westmeath replied with a point, Sherry (2), Leanne Maguire (2), Holly McQuaid (2) and Lauren Garland all raised white flags to peg Westmeath back to three but it was too little too late.

Monaghan, along with Laois, are bottom of the table, still looking for their first points after the opening two games.

Division Three

Down saw Wexford overturn a two-point half-time deficit to inflict a second successive defeat on the Mourne county as they lost 1-5 to 0-5 in Pairc Esler yesterday.

The home side led 0-4 to 0-2 at the break, Natasha Ferris, Laoise Duffy, Aoife Brogan and Viv McCormack with the points, while Chloe Fox and Ciara Banville on target for Wexford.

Aoife Laverty extended Down’s lead out to three eight minutes into the second half but that would be their last score. Wexford hit 1-3 without reply, Banviille’s 49th-minute goal decisive as they took the lead for the first time, 1-4 to 0-5 and they held out of the victory.

Antrim conceded five goals, which proved costly, in their 5-4 to 2-8, defeat to Offaly in Edenderry.

The Saffrons were looking for their first points and at half-time led by one, 1-6 to 2-1, Ellie Murphy with their goal in the 12th minute and Caitlin Taggart with four of their first-half points.

Offaly captain Ellee McEvoy and Roisin Cockram grabbed Offaly’s goals to keep them in the game.

The Ulster side extended their advantage to three points but Offaly hit them for 2-2 without reply, their two goals in quick succession from Cockram, the first a penalty, as she grabbed a hat-trick for herself.

Substitute Eimear Hand finished with 1-1 late on for Offaly and despite Lara Dahunsi finding the back of the net for Emma Kelly’s side late on, Antrim were too far out of reach to salvage anything from this game.

Division Four

FERMANAGH’S Eimear Smyth was on fire once more as the Erne county defeated Wicklow 2-15 to 2-7 in Donagh yesterday.

Eimear Smyth hit 2-9 of Derrygonnelly's 2-11 total in the Ulster IFC final victory over Castlerahan/Denn
Sharpshooter: Eimear Smyth hit 2-9 of Derrygonnelly's 2-11 total in the Ulster IFC final victory over Castlerahan/Denn

They did find themselves 1-2 to a point down after 18 minutes, but they finished the half strongly, outscoring their opponents six points to one, Smyth with five of those and Niamh McManus the other, to lead by one at half-time, 0-7 to 1-3.

Danielle Maguire extended Fermanagh’s lead on the resumption but a Niamh Caffrey goal for the visitors in the 35th minute gave them back the lead, 2-4 to 0-8.

Two Smyth points levelled the game but Westmeath edged back in front before Smyth replied once more and when she found the back of the net for the first time. In the 48th minute, Fermanagh kicked on.

The Derrygonnelly player grabbed a second goal deep into added time to ensure they collected the three points this week after having to settle for a draw against Carlow last weekend.

Derry are still looking for their first points as they fell to a heavy 8-9 to 0-8 defeat to title favourites Leitrim in Faughanvale yesterday.

Division One round two

Galway 0-10 Mayo 2-5, Cork 1-6 Armagh 1-8, Meath 2-5 Dublin 0-7, Kerry 2-11 Waterford 2-5

Division Two, round two

Donegal 1-4 Kildare. 1-8, Tyrone 1-7 Tipperary 0-9, Monaghan 2-13 Westmeath 4-10, Cavan 0-9 Laois 0-6

Division Three, round two

Clare 4-11 Sligo 2-6, Down 0-5 Wexford 1-5, Roscommon 1-14 Louth 0-6, Offaly 5-4 Antrim 2-8

Division Four, round three

Derry 0-8 Leitrim 8-9, Fermanagh 2-15 Wicklow 2-7, Limerick 1-9 Kilkenny 0-1, Carlow 1-8 Longford 1-8