DONEGAL raised four green flags in their emphatic 4-11 to 2-3 victory over holders Cork in Letterkenny on Saturday, Yvonne Bonner and TG4 All-Star Niamh Hegarty grabbing a brace each.
The six in-a-row chasing Rebels already had their semi-final place booked though, and they now face Mayo after their win over Monaghan.
Their entertaining meeting in Swinford threw up nine goals, with Sarah Rowe bagging three of the Westerners’ while her DCU teammate Muireann Atkinson hit a brace at the other end.
Mayo’s inside forward line of Rowe and the Kelly sisters – Niamh and Grace – were on fire, combining for 4-8, but Peter Leahy’s charges were made work for the win throughout.
Galway manager Stephen Glennon has expressed his pleasure with making the top four in the Lidl Ladies National Football League Division 1.
The Tribeswomen booked their semi-final date with TG4 All-Ireland champions Dublin yesterday with a six-point win over Westmeath.
It was a scrappy encounter in Mullingar with Galway made sweat, but they had control of proceedings for the most part.
“We were delighted to get over today,” Glennon said afterwards.
“You knew Westmeath were tough. They’ve been building. They’re a decent outfit and I was just trying to get into the space today where we could just get over the line and hopefully put ourselves into a position to claim a semi-final spot.
“I have to credit Westmeath, I was fierce impressed with them. Maybe just towards the end it came down to we wanted it a little bit more because we had the prize of a semi-final at stake but hats off to Westmeath today. I thought they were very good.”
On Saturday, Mick Bohan’s Sky Blues ensured that they’ll finish at the summit of Division 1 by seeing off already-relegated Kerry by 1-16 to 1-11.
Sinead Goldrick netted Dublin’s goal.
In Division 2, Waterford will meet Cavan in the semi-finals, while Tipperary have been paired with Armagh. Tipperary and Waterford had already secured a safe passage to the last four ahead of the final phase of group fixtures, which were rescheduled round 5 clashes.
Waterford finished on top of the pile yesterday on head-to-head, as they claimed a 1-19 to 2-6 victory over Shane Ronayne’s side at WIT.
Maria Delahunty impressed throughout and rattled the net before half-time as TG4 All-Ireland intermediate champions Tipperary suffered their first defeat since 2016.