Sligo 2 - 14 Waterford 0 - 9

Bord Gais Ladies National Football League Division 2A Round 5

Late Flourish insures Sligo victory.

Sligo 2 – 14 Waterford 0 – 9

A final quarter flourish which yielded 2 – 5 compared to 0 – 2 for the visitors insured that Sligo would sign off their Bord Gais National Football League Round Robin campaign in style with this eleven point victory over Waterford on Sunday in Markievicz Park.
Playing on the Hallow turf that is Markievicz Park for the first time since defeating Longford in the NFL Quarte Final back in 2005, the home side’s victory looked in doubt until midway through the second period when Geevagh wizard Stephanie O’Reilly bagged a brace of goals to turn the tide in the Yeats County’s direction. Up to then the winners looked sluggish and one would have been forgiven had they thought O’Reilly was just introduced as up to then her involvement appeared non existent.
To be fair to the visitors it was a blow they didn’t deserve as they had Sligo on the ropes for long stages throughout the opening 45 minutes of the contest going in at the short whistle ahead and after making an bright opening to the second half things looked bleak for the westerners.
The opening Quarter produced no less than seven scores as the visitors led at the point four points to three. Michelle Ryan (3) and Ruth Kirwin providing the scores for Waterford and Therese Marren, Fiona Maye and Imelda Mc Nulty adding the Sligo ones with McNulty’s score the pick of the bunch. Points from Marren and Karen Maloney edged Sligo back in front by the 20th minute but it was Waterford that finished the stronger with Michelle Ryan – a free – and Stephanie Power sending over to send the visitors in happy at the short whistle in front.
A whirlwind start to the second half witnessed two points inside the opening sixty seconds as Michelle Ryan and Therese Marren traded points. A Karen Maloney pointed free drew the side’s level in the 3rd minute. The next ten minutes was to witness a number of scores going a begging at either end as the game hung in the balance. Pints from Therese Marren (12th) and Bernice Byrne (14th) edged Sligo in front before O’Reilly grabbed her brace of goals in a ninety second period. Sandwiched In between them was a point at the other end from Michelle Ryan as Waterford tried to recover from O’Reilly’s first blast. On both Occasions Therese Marren provided the final pass and ironically both goals came about following grate spade work from substitute Siobhan Melvin who clearly caused Waterford problems following her introduction.
A Michelle Ryan pointed free reduced the gap back to 6 points entering the final ten minutes bat that was as good as it was to get for them as Sligo signed off in style adding five unanswered points through Therese Marren (2), Karen Maloney and Stephanie O’Reilly. Fittingly the final score of the day arrived from the skipper of the band Fiona Maye who finished of a sweeping move from the Sligo backline leaving Paddy Henry with a broad smile on his face awaiting a Bord Gais National Football League quarter final date on April 5th.
Sligo Scorers: Stephanie O’Reilly 2 – 1, Therese Marren 0 – 6, Karen Maloney 0 – 3, Fiona Maye 0 – 2, Imelda McNulty & Bernice Byrne 0 – 1 each.
Scorers Waterford: Michelle Ryan 0 – 7, Stephanie Power & Ruth Kirwin 0 – 1 each.
Sligo: Katrina Connolly, Tina Keane, Cammie Kennedy, Angela Doohan, Jackie Mulligan, Tracy O’Hara, Fiona Maye (C), Sinead Mc Tiernan, Bernice Byrne, Karen Maloney, Aileen Connolly, Siobhan O’Sullivan, Imelda McNulty, Therese Marren, Stephanie O’Reilly. Subs used: Siobhan Melvin for A Connolly, Elaine O’Reilly for I McNulty, Louise Smith for B Byrne, Etna Flanagan for J Mulligan.
Waterford: Aimee Jordan, Aoife McGowan, Ann Dunphy, Aileen Barnes, Margaret Foley, Mary Foley, Linda Wall, Grainne Enright, Elaine Power, Margaret Foley, Michelle Ryan, Roisin Monahan, Mairead Wall, Ruth Kirwin, Stephanie Power.
Referee: Mel Kenny (Mayo)

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