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20 May 2022

Second half goals seal Limerick win over Offaly to reach Ladies Football League semi final

Limerick Offaly

Limerick captain Roisin Ambrose sets up an attack in the win over Offaly. PIC: Mark Sheahan

TWO quick-fire second half goals powered Limerick to victory over Offaly in the Lidl Ladies Football League.

In Staker Wallace GAA grounds in Martinstown this Sunday it finished Limerick 3-4 Offaly 1-6.

Two wins from two outings mean that Limerick will advance to the semi finals of Division Four as group winners ahead of the final round trip to Carlow.

Strong gusting wind and driving rain made conditions hard for both teams.

The Graham Shine managed Limerick had the aid of the swirling breeze in the first half and brought a 1-4 to 0-4 lead into the interval.

Given the conditions scores were always going to be hard come by.

A Catriona Davis free opened the scoring but Fiona Dempsey hit back for Offaly to leave the score at just 0-1 each at the first half water break.

In the second quarter Grainne McKenna and Iris Kennelly had Limerick points but Offaly actually edged 0-4 to 0-3 ahead with Ellee McEvoy scores.

Then came the first Limerick goal - Catriona Davis saw her shot fly into the net, under under the crossbar and out of reach of the Offaly goalkeeper.

When Cathy Mee added a point, Limerick were 1-4 to 0-4 ahead and that's how they went to the half time dressing room.

In the second half, Limerick were in defensive mode.

The third quarter saw only two Offaly scores to move the Leinster side 1-5 to 1-4 ahead entering the final 15-minutes. Their goal from Saoire McGuinness.

Limerick also lost Offaly native Mairead Kavanagh to a 10-minute sinbin in this spell.

Then with the stopwatch just inside the final 10-minutes came two quick-fire Limerick goals.

The first from Iris Kennelly and then within 60-seconds Cathy Mee added another.

That Limerick had 3-4 to 1-5 ahead and they were still playing with 14-players due to the sinbin.

Offaly went in search of goals but Limerick had Sophie Hennessy as a safe pair of hands between the posts to keep The Faithful County at bay.

Just as Kavanagh returned from the sinbin, Limerick lost Maeve O'Halloran to another yellow card but time was in their favour to hold out for a merited victory.

SCORERS: Limerick: Iris Kennelly, Cathy Mee and Catriona Davis (0-1free) 1-1 each, Grainne McKenna 0-1. Offaly: Saoirse McGuinness 1-0, Elle McEvoy 0-2 (1free), Fiona Dempsey, Maire Byrne, Emma Hand (free) and Saorah Doyle (free) 0-1 each. 

LIMERICK: Sophie Hennessy (Old Mill); Kristine Reidy (Feohanagh-Castlemahon), Sarah O'Sullivan (St Brigids), Maeve O'Halloran (Adare): Meadhbh MacNamara (St Ailbes), Leah Coughlan (Oola), Katie Heelan (St Ailbes); Loretta Hanley  (Feohanagh-Castlemahon), Roisin Ambrose (Old Mill); Iris Kennelly (Old Mill), Mairead Kavanagh (St Ailbes), Amy Ryan (Oola); Catriona Davis (Monagea), Grainne McKenna (St Ailbes), Cathy Mee (Ballylanders). Subs: Lauren Ryan (Adare) for Amy Ryan (45mins), Noelle Curtin (Athea) for Loretta Hanley (45mins), Anna O'Dea (Oola) for Katie Heelan (45mins), Rebekah Daly (Athea) for Meadhbh MacNamara (53mins), Rose Hyland (Ballylanders) for Catriona Davis (56mins). 

OFFALY: Eimear Evans; Nicole Buckley, Orla Whelan, Dawn Hannon; Nicole Farrelly, Annie Kehoe, Roisin Ennis; Emma Maher, Amy Gavin-Mangan; Fiona Dempsey, Emma Hand, Saoirse McGuinness; Saorah Doyle, Maire Byrne, Ellee McEvoy. Subs: Aoife Carey for Fiona Dempsey (41mins), Sarah Kehoe for Saoirse McGuinness (50mins), Becca O'Connor for Saorah Doyle (61mins).

REREREE: Ger Canny (Leitrim).

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