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Senior Ladies Make It Two From Two After Battling Win Over Tipp

Sunday 28.01.2024
Team Talk Mag


Tyrone 1-7 Tipperary 0-9

The Tyrone Ladies made it two wins from two outings to go top of the Lidl National League Division Two table with a battling win over a highly fancied Tipperary at Healy Park on Sunday.

The visitors were on top for long periods of the game but the work rate and intensity of the Tyrone girls added to an incredible display by goalkeeper Caitlin Donnelly helped secure the win and send the Red Hands to the top of the table.

Having gone in at the short whistle on level terms following a speculative Maria Canavan goal, many Tyrone supporters were convinced their team had a mountain to climb as they faced into a strong breeze in the second half. However they defended with discipline and took their scores on the break before pushing home with a super-charged finish at the end. Two late scores from Chloe McCaffrey frees sealed the win for a Tyrone side that never led until the sixty third minute.

The Munster girls got off to a fast start with a point from Angela McGuigan, and with the wind in their backs, they continued to put pressure on a Tyrone defence that needed some solid work from Joanne Barrett, Jayne Lyons, and Emma Mulgrew. There were a number of nervous moments in those opening moments as the Red Hands struggled to get a foothold in the game.

Minutes into the first half Tipperary crafted a goal chance when Aishling Moloney fed Anna-Rose Kennedy, whose deflected shot was pushed around a post by goalkeeper Caitlin Donnelly as she went full stretch to her left to pull off a fine save. Moloney doubled the visitors’ lead, and Tyrone were finding difficult to track the clever movement and pace of their opponents.

Aoibhin McHugh executed an important turnover to relieve the pressure and set her side on the attack, but despite a couple of well worked forays, they were unable to find the accuracy in the finish, until Chloe McCaffrey landed a long range score in the eighth minute. That was cancelled out by Emma Morrissey at the other end as the Munster side re-established control around the middle third, but another fine McCaffrey effort kept Tyrone very much in touch.

The strong running of Aishling Moloney continue to trouble the Tyrone rearguard and Tipp deservedly ended the opening quarter with a 0-4 to 0-2 lead, after Emer McCarthy landed a point. Moloney stretched the lead further before Emma Jane Gervin responded at the other end. Despite winning a couple of scoreable frees Tyrone were unable to make further inroads on the score-sheet.

A converted free from Emma Morrissey had Tipperary three clear, but Tyrone, with Meabh Mallon and Aoibhinn McHugh pushing strongly, were beginning to enjoy more territorial advantage and they had a goal chance which fell to Emma Conroy, but her well struck effort flew just wide.They eventually hit the net in the twenty sixth minute when a long range effort from Maria Canavan deceived the Tipp goalkeeper  Lauren Fitzpatrick and finished up in the net.

The visitors were clearly stung by that setback and went in search of a goal themselves, but were once again denied by goalkeeper Donnelly, who advanced off her line to take control of the situation and avert the danger. Tyrone finished the half  on the attack, with Gervin, McCaffrey and Canavan combining smartly. Unfortunately the finish did not match the build up playand they went in at the break on level terms, 1-3 to 0-6.

Donnelly was called into action again early in the second half, saving well from Angela McGuigan, and despite the strong pressing of Aine Strain, Chloe McCaffrey, Meabh Mallon and Aoibhinn McHugh, the Tipperary defence held out to go back on the attack. Maria Curley got in to have a shot at goal, but again excellent work from ‘keeper Donnelly forced her to shoot wide.

But, facing the elements,  the pressure was growing on the home side, Tipp they stretched the advantage with a Morrissey free and a neat Neassa Towey effort.

The heroics of goalkeeper Donnelly were on view again as another brilliant save kept her side in the game, as she pushed a blistering shot out for a ’45.

It was an inspirational intervention from the Fintona net-minder, and it lifted her colleagues further out the field, spurring them to lift their game and step up the intensity. Strong running from Caitlin Campbell, Meabh Corrigan, Aine Strain and midfielders Mallon and McHugh brought them deep into Tipperary territory, and when Canavan slotted over another score, just a point separated the sides approaching the end of the third quarter.

Towel steered over a Tipp free to restore the two points differential but the superior fitness of the Tyrone girls saw them dominate the final ten minutes. Tipperary did have their chances, but strong defensive play forced them into hurried and inaccurate shots, and the Red Hands rallied for McCaffrey to send Emma Conroy in for a point.

Unsurprisingly the sides were level on 60 minutes when excellent approach work from Gervin and Campbell saw substitute Sasha Byrne win a free that McCaffrey converted. It was McCaffrey who hit the winner from a stoppage time free, after Conroy had been fouled.

Tyrone scorers: Maria Canavan 1-1, Chloe McCaffrey 0-4 (2 frees), Ema Jane Gervin, Emma Conroy 0-1 each.

Tipperary scorers: Emma Morrissey 0-3 (2 frees), Aishling Moloney, Messa Towey (1 free) 0-2 each, Angela McGuigan, Emer McCarthy 0-1 each.

Tyrone: Caitlin Donnelly; Jayne Lyons, Joanne Barrett, Ciara Daly; Caitlin Campbell, Emma Mulgrew, Meabh Corrigan; Meabh Mallon, Aoibhinn McHugh; Aine Grimes, Aoife Horisk, Aine Strain; Chloe McCaffrey, Maria Canavan, Emma Conroy.

Subs: Sadha Byrne for Canavan, Ciara Colton for Daly, Orla Mulgrew for E Mulgrew



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