LIDL Ladies National Football League Final – Sunday, 6th May
Dublin 3-15 Mayo 1-10
Mayo’s hopes of a first national title since 2007 never got out of the starting block in Parnell Park as Dublin struck in the opening quarter to build a match winning lead.
Sinead Aherne, Laura McGinley and Noelle Healy got Dublin’s goals but it was the 1-5 to 0-0 head start the All-Ireland champions got that ultimately decided the league title.
Mick Bohan’s team were well onto their way to a first league crown when after taking a 0-2 to 0-0 advantage, semi-final goal scoring hero Nicole Owens was brought down and Aherne struck the resulting penalty to the net.
"All hands on deck" some brave goal keeping & defending on display from @Mayo_LGFA as Laura Mc Ginley scores a goal for @dublinladiesg in @lidl_ireland Div 1 Final today. @LadiesFootball pic.twitter.com/2mvlSlE7c9
— GAApics.com (@GAApics) May 6, 2018
Olwen Carey, Niamh McEvoy and Aherne added the white flags for their eight-point cushion but Mayo started settling into the tie through Fiona Doherty’s opening point and Sarah Rowe.
However, despite Rachel Kearns producing some good saves including one from Laura McGinley, the late Dublin replacement did get their second goal after being set up by Lyndsey Davey. It made the score 2-9 to 0-4 which was the 11 points that separated the teams at the finish.
Rowe scored a Mayo penalty and Grace Kelly left it 2-9 to 1-5 but when Healy attacked with one of her trademark runs before finishing to the net for Dublin’s third major.
Sinead Cafferky, Kelly and Rowe did help Mayo rally back but the contest had been settled. Dublin completed their own unique double ensuring they’ll be strong favourites for the championship campaign.
Mayo – Sarah Rowe 1-5 (two frees, 1-0 penalty), Grace Kelly 0-2 (both frees), Fiona Doherty 0-1, Sinead Cafferky 0-1, Niamh Kelly 0-1
Dublin – Sinead Aherne 1-9 (five frees, 1-0 penalty), Noelle Healy 1-1, Laura McGinley 1-0, Nicole Owens 0-2, Olwen Carey 0-1, Niamh McEvoy 0-1, Lyndsey Davey 0-1
Mayo: Rachel Kearns; Emma Lowther, Sarah Tierney, Nicola O’Malley; Marie Corbett, Danielle Caldwell, Doireann Hughes; Clodagh McManamon, Aileen Gilroy; Fiona McHale, Fiona Doherty, Sinéad Cafferky; Niamh Kelly, Sarah Rowe, Grace Kelly. Subs used: Orla Conlon for O’Malley (24 mins), Shauna Howley for Hughes (39 mins), Sarah Mulvihill for Caldwell (48 mins), Amy Dowling for Kelly (52 mins), Tamara O’Connor for Doherty (55 mins)
Dublin: Ciara Trant; Martha Byrne, Deirdre Murphy, Leah Caffrey; Siobhán McGrath, Sinéad Finnegan, Niamh Collins; Lauren Magee, Olwen Carey; Nicole Owens, Niamh McEvoy, Lyndsey Davey; Laura McGinley, Noelle Healy, Sinéad Aherne. Subs used: Jennifer Dunne for McGinley (HT), Carla Rowe for Davey (36 mins), Katie Murray for McGrath (39 mins), Sinead Goldrick for Carey (56 mins), Hannah O’Neill for Owens (60 mins)
Referee: Brendan Rice (Down)