WITH their home groud secured there was plenty of upbeat faces at Tolka Park last weekend to see Shelbourne make a big statement of intent with victory over their closest rivals Peamount United.
Shelbourne opened up a 5-point gap at the top of the Women’s National League after coming out oo top of an end-to-end.
Karen Duggan had the first chance of the game for the visitors, but her driving effort went just over on 10 minutes. Ireland U-19 international Erin McLaughlin saw her effort blocked minutes later.
It was the three Jessica’s who combined for the match-winner on the half hour mark though. Ziu played in Gargan, who cut inside and sent in a terrific, dangerous cross. The ball dropped to teenage star Stapleton who fired Shelbourne into the lead.
The home side almost went two up soon after, but Gargan’s header was spectacularly tipped over by Niamh Reid-Burke.
Peamount pressed for an equaliser in the second half, with Duggan sending in some terrific crosses. Republic of Ireland star Aine O’Gorman also threatened for the visitors, but they couldn’t find a way through Shels’ defence.
In the dying stages Sadhbh Doyle and O’Gorman went close to equalising, and Chloe Mustaki put in a match-winning tackle as the champions held on for a massive result in this year’s title race.
Elswhere, Bohemians had it all their own way as they hammered Treaty United 4-0.
It was an emphatic win at the Markets Field, although it was marred by an unfortunate injury to Isobel Finnegan on the stroke of half-time.
There was disappointment for DLR Waves, however, as they lost 2-0 away to a Wexford Youthsreturning to winning ways after a brilliant display at Ferrycarrig Park.
Going into the game, DLR Waves were only two points behind Wexford in fourth position. But Wexford took their opportunities.
The first Wexford goal came in the 13th minute through Nicola Sinnott and DLR had no way back . to put her side 1-0 up.
DLR kept on the pressure, with striker Katie Malone running at every ball possible up the pitch. An equaliser looked on the horizon after a number of positive chances, but Wexford’s defence and goalkeeper Maeve Williams kept it tight and they went into the break on top.
The second half began with the same intensity as the first. Wexford had a great chance in the 49th minute, but Rossiter couldn’t capitalise, putting the ball just over the crossbar.
In the 88th minute, Ellen Molloy won a free-kick in another great position. Some may say it was too ambitious to try the shot, but not for Ciara Rossiter, who’s shot dipped into the net to put the home side 2-0 up late on.
A big three points for Wexford Youths in terms of their league campaign, but many positives for DLR Waves and Graham Kelly to take going into next week.
- SOS protest re polluted waters
- Food basket report reveals continuing pressure on family budgets
- Pádraig Harrington announces Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind’s Nationwide Golf Challenge
- Diesel and petrol prices already on the rise
- Mother & Baby campaigner Tony Kelly laid to rest