THE Cork senior ladies footballers returned to winning ways last weekend with a comprehensive win over Monaghan in Inniskeen.
Orla Finn was the chief scorer with a 1-8 haul, while further goals from Áine Terry O’Sullivan, Libby Coppinger, Ciara O’Sullivan and Doireann O’Sullivan gave Cork the three match points.
Finn was untouchable at times in this game, and all of the first five scores fell to the dangerous attacker. After a dominant opening period Cork held a 3-6 to 0-0 lead and Monaghan’s first score didn’t arrive until the 38th minute when Muireann Atkinson kicked her first of four frees, but even at that stage, there was no hope of salvation for the home side.
In beating Monaghan, Cork have reignited their hopes of reaching the league semi-finals but will need to get results from their next three outings against Donegal, Mayo and Dublin.
Galway and Donegal maintained their perfect starts to the Lidl National Football League both securing wins.
Sarah Conneally’s goal helped Galway to a convincing Connacht derby victory against Mayo at MacHale Park, while Karen Guthrie, Róisín Friel and Geraldine McLaughlin all found the net for Donegal in their two-point win over Tipperary in Convoy.
Playing into a strong wing Galway still led by two at the break, while Conneally’s goal ensured there would be no Mayo comeback.
In Convoy, two quick-fire goals from ace forwards Karen Guthrie and Geraldine McLaughlin gave Donegal a 10 point lead in which they looked home and dry but Tipperary as always, never gave up the chase and goals from Anna Rose Kennedy and Roisin Howard brought them right back in it, but Maxi Curran’s side held on for a two-point win.
Dublin stay hot on the heels of unbeaten Galway and Donegal with their third win on the bounce, but they were made to fight hard for it by Sean Finnegan’s spirited Westmeath side.
The Dubs were also boosted by the return of All-Star Sinead Goldrick to the squad after the Foxrock-Cabinteely stalwart took some time out from the league after her club’s run to the All-Ireland club final. Manager Mick Bohan welcomed Goldrick’s return and praised his side’s hunger to fight for the ‘dirty ball’ in their five-point victory.
“To be honest, when you play in those conditions it obviously changes the way you can view things. There was a lot of good, battling qualities from the players,” said Bohan.
“Obviously today, that spirit just to fight for dirty ball was just a key element, so we’re happy to get through it. A lot of girls got game time again, which is obviously our objective.
“The Sinead Goldricks and the Sinead Ahernes need to play. They can’t just come back on the stage and play a certain level without game time. That’s Goldie’s first 15 or 20 minutes of football this year.
“It’s a thin line between trying to give people game time and at the same time making sure the players that you certainly know are going to be involved, are going to get game time and they’re going to be sharp.”