Kerry Progress to Next Round

Kerry 2-10

Donegal 0-5

A solid team performance from Kerry ensured that they booked their place in the ladies football All-Ireland quarter-final with a fine win over Donegal at Birr on Saturday.

Geraldine McLaughlin opened the scoring with a free for Donegal, but Kerry’s riposte was strong as they reeled of 1-3 without reply, Louise Galvin with an excellent individual goal while Sarah Houlihan kicked two fine points.

Only for a great Katie Herrin block on a Louise Ní Mhuircheartaigh goalbound shot the lead would have been greater, and points by Geraldine McLaughlin and Yvonne McMonagle had Donegal back to within a goal before Kerry found the net again, Ní Mhuircheartaigh’s long-range free managing to elude Róisín McCafferty in the Donegal goal with the aid of the crossbar.

With Donegal further hampered by the yellow-carding of McMonagle, Kerry continued to build up their lead thanks to strong running through the middle and at half-time it was 2-8 to 0-4.

The heavy rain at the outset of the second half made things more difficult for both sides, and while Kerry outscored their opponents by two points to one in the early stages, they were reduced to 13 players as Deirdre Corridan and Patrice Dennehy were sin-binned within a minute of each other around the halfway stage.

Donegal were creating chances but not availing fully of them, and lost Katie Herrin to a yellow before Kerry’s Aislinn Desmond suffered the same fate. As the game ground to its finish, Kerry continued to augment their lead, finishing with two Ní Mhuircheartaigh points to round off the win.

Meanwhile, in the other qualifiers there were wins for Meath and Tyrone. The Royal County enjoyed a 3-26 to 0-5 victory over Sligo in Ballymahon, having led by 2-16 to 0-2 at half-time. Elaine Duffy scored 1-7 for Meath, Geraldine Doherty got 1-6 and Katie O’Brien bagged 1-4, Noelle Gormley Sligo’s top scorer with two points.

Tyrone were 2-20 to 1-11 victors over Tipperary in The Downs in Westmeath, pulling away in the second half after leading by 0-10 to 0-5 at the interval. Early second-half goals from Gemma Begley and Cathy Donnelly opened up a cushion, Begley finishing with 1-6 while Caitriona McGahan also impressed. Tipp did produce a late rally, sub Edel Hanley scoring a goal, but it was never going to be enough.

Scorers for Kerry: L Ní Mhuircheartaigh 1-3 (1-1f), L Galvin 1-1, S Houlihan 0-3 (0-1f), B Breen, SJ Joy, D Corridan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Donegal: G McLaughlin 0-4 (0-3f), Y McMonagle 0-1.

KERRY: E Murphy; C Kelly, A Leonard, A Lyons; D Hallissey, A Desmond, SJ Joy; L Scanlon, B Breen; M Quirke, M O’Donoghue, L Galvin; S Houlihan, P Dennehy, L Ní Mhuircheartaigh.

Subs: D Corridan for Quirke (half-time), M O’Connell for Houlihan (50), L Cronin for Scanlon (55).

DONEGAL: R McCafferty; K Keeney, K Herrin, O Carr; G Houston, C Hegarty, K Wilson; A McDonnell, K Guthrie; E Gallagher, N Hegarty, A Cunningham; N McLaughlin, Y McMonagle, G McLaughlin.

Subs: R Friel for Gallagher (22), T McCafferty for Carr (37), C Grant for Cunningham (50), O McCafferty for Houston (59).

Referee: D McEnery (Westmeath).

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