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Meath defeat Fermanagh in Brookeborough

Meath defeat Fermanagh in Brookeborough




Meath v Fermanagh
Brookeborough, Co. Fermanagh
Saturday February 21st 2009
Throw in 7.30p.m.

Half time score:            Meath   2 – 11 – Fermanagh   0 – 03
Full time score:            Meath   4 – 16 – Fermanagh   2 – 06

Meath Ladies continued their search for silverware when they comprehensively accounted for Fermanagh in the Bord Gais Energy Ladies NFL game played at Brookeborough on Saturday night under lights.

Playing with the aid of a stiff breeze Meath hit the ground running straight from the whistle and, within 90 seconds had two points on the board courtesy of Philomena Sheridan and corner forward Fiona O’Neill. Shortly after Fermanagh were awarded a free close in and Aisling Moane had no trouble obtaining the Ernesiders first score of the game on three minutes. This was to be their only score for fifteen minutes with Eve Wardick and Grainne Nulty completely dominating proceedings in the middle of the field lining up score after score for the forwards. The Royals were playing some classy football and retained possession of the ball for long periods of time. The Fermanagh backs were under extreme pressure and with O’Neill, Mary Sheridan and Elaine Duffy taking full advantage Meath were looking good.

With seventeen minutes gone Grainne Nulty latched onto a pass from Mary Sheridan and had no difficulty putting it straight past the Fermanagh keeper Sarah Stewart. This put Meath into a commanding lead of 1 – 06 to a point. On one of their few excursions down the field Fermanagh secured their second point of the game on eighteen minutes with a well taken point.

The last third of the half belonged to the effervescent Gillian Bennett.
Bennett put a goal and four points on the board in that space of time. Fermanagh could do little else but look on. Bennett’s goal came in the dying seconds of the half after Philomena Sheridan had sent in a long searching kick which Bennett caught and coolly slotted past Stewart. This left Meath with a handsome 2 – 11 to 0 – 03 half time score.

The second half started much the same as the first half ended with Elaine Duffy slotting the ball between the posts. Some great team work resulted in Grainne Nulty picking up the ball about thirty metres from goal, she turned and drove an unstoppable shot past the Fermanagh keeper. Meath were once more looking good.   In fairness to Fermanagh they never gave up and in the third minute of the half Aisling McCaughey rattled the back of the net for the first of their goals.

The next passage of play saw Philomena Sheridan break free for a one on one shot with Stewart, she made a wonderful save to deny Sheridan, the tackle resulted in a free to Meath and once again Duffy coolly slotted over the resultant free kick.

Fermanagh came more into the game and went on the attack once again, this resulted in them hitting the crossbar and see Nulty make a goal line clearance before Donna Maguire finally put the ball over the bar for a well earned point.

The last fifteen minutes was a rather scrappy affair with both teams throwing everything into the game. It was Meath who came out on top with Aedin Murray hitting the back of the net before Duffy two points and substitute Ciara Dempsey one point finally put Fermanagh to bed. But, not to be out done Fermanagh had the final say of the game and to the delight of the home crowd Roisin Gleeson shot past the diving Irene Munnelly to score a lovely goal.

All in all a steady and improving result for the Royal girls but, with eleven wides alone in the first half there is still a lot to be done. The girls at the back worked tirelessly throughout and with youngsters the calibre of Claire Coffey and Áine Fagan well chaperoned by the more experienced players of Burke, McKeever Rispin and Guy Meath may just be in with a good shout come the latter end of the competition.

Meaths next outing is on Sunday next March 1st away to Down. Throw in is expected to be 2p.m. at a venue tbc. The last time these two sides met it was Down who came out on top effectively putting Meath out of the All Ireland Championship play offs.

Meath team and scorers:
Irene Munnelly, Claire Coffey, Brid Guy, Louise McKeever, Jenny Rispin, Jane Burke, Áine Fagan, Grainne Nulty ( 2 gls), Eve Wardick, Elaine Duffy (7 pts (4 f), Gillian Bennett (1 – 04), Aedin Murray (1 g), Fiona O’Neill (2 pts), Philomena Sheridan (1pt), Mary Sheridan (1 pt).

Ciara Dempsey( 1pt) for Burke, Maria Kealy for O’Neill, Sinead McCormack for Fagan, Amy Bennett for Duffy and Avril Robinson for Gillian Bennett

Fermanagh team:
Sarah Stewart, Mary Smyth, Kyla McManus, Patricia Maleady, Claire Woods, Orla Rahill, Roisin Carron, Aisling Moane, Áine McBrien, Sharon Little, Caroline Little, Donna Maguire, Adelle Gallagher, Aisling McCaughey, Aileen Moane.

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