Friday, May 24, 2024

Ladies National Football League: Armagh through to Division One final after narrow Mayo win

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Armagh are through to the Division One final for the first time after a narrow 2-9 to 2-8 victory against Mayo.

The Orchard County led 2-5 to 0-2 at the break after goals from Aimee Mackin and Aoife McCoy.

Mayo recovered in the second period and and drew level through strikes from Sinead Walsh and Saoirse Delaney, before a late Mackin free sealed the win for Armagh.

They’ve now won all six of their league games.

Armagh dominated the first half at James Stephens Park in Ballina, with Kelly Mallon getting them off the mark with a free.

Maria Cannon replied with a point from play for Mayo before Kathryn Sullivan saw her shot on goal well saved by the Armagh goalkeeper Brianne Mathers.

Armaghthen took control, with Mackin registering a free before she fired home the first goal of the game with a low finish on 18 minutes.

Mallon recorded another free before with McCoy then scoring on 28 minutes to further extend the away side’s advantage.

Walsh got Mayo’s second point, 20 minutes after their first, but Armagh responded with points from Mackin and Niamh Coleman giving the visitors a commanding nine-point lead at the interval.

Mayo were a different side after the break, rattling home the first three points of the second half to reduce the deficit.

McCoy split the posts for Armagh’s first point of the game, but Walsh fired home Mayo’s first goal of the game on 52 minutes to keep them in the game.

Mackin pointed to keep the scoreboard ticking over for Armagh, before Delaney rattled home Mayo’s second goal to bring the hosts to within one point.

Cannon brought Mayo level and it was nip-and-tuck from that point on, with Mayo responding after Armagh twice nudged ahead.

Mackin’s late free secured the victory for Armagh, who now have a Croke Park final to look forward to on 7 April.

In Division Two, Donegal emphatically defeated Cavan 4-20 to 0-5, while Tyrone and Kildare shared the spoils in what was a dress rehearsal ahead of their meeting in the league final in April.

Monaghan, like Cavan, are at risk of relegation to Division Three following their 2-10 to 0-7 loss against Tipperary.

In Division Three, Antrim were beaten heavily by Clare, who sealed promotion with their 10-7 to 0-7 win, whilst Down secured a 4-12 to 2-6 victory against Louth.

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