Leitrim too strong for Saffrons

Lidl National Football League Division Four

Leitrim 7-10-0-02 Antrim

From Kevin Herron at Ballinamore

It was a long afternoon for Antrim ladies who suffered a third straight league defeat at the hands of Leitrim in Ballinamore today.

Despite surviving a double scare inside the first two minutes when Emma Guckian and Leah Fox struck the upright, the Saffrons fell behind to a point from Aibe Clancy- though quickly responded with Nikki Jones conjuring an angled point to equalise.

The hosts hit the first goal on eight minutes as Leah Fox atoned for her earlier miss with a fine finish past Anna McCann.

Aibe Clancy popped over her second point of the afternoon and Ellen Morgan converted a free in response.

But just before the break Leitrim extended their lead with a quick-fire double of goals – Michelle Guckian bustled her way through and rifled to the net and Carla Le Guen slipped in Leah Fox- who doubled her goal tally.

A further point from Ellish O’Dowd before the break gave the hosts a commanding 3-03-0-02 lead at the end of a first-half where conditions could only be described as testing- owing to storm Ciara sweeping over the hills.

In a show of sportsmanship Leitrim donated a spare kit to Antrim as both sides returned with a fresh set of jerseys for the second period.

Leitrim picked up where they left off at the end of the opening half as Michelle Guckian added two points from play and another two from frees.

Charlene Tyrell added his side’s fifth second-half score on the spin before Leah Fox secured her third goal of the afternoon with a neat finish to make it 4-08-0-02.

Full-forward Fox added her second in quick succession and points from substitute’s Laura O’Dowd and Muireann Devanney followed before the midway point in the half.

The dominant hosts completed a convincing victory late on through goals from Vivienne Egan and Devanney as the Saffrons fell to their third straight league defeat.

Leitrim: M Monaghan, S Tigh, M McCawley, E Quinn, C Owens, S O’Rourke, K Connelly, S Mc Loughlin, E O’Dowd (0-01), E Guckian, A Clancy (0-02), C La Guen, C Tyrell (0-01), L Fox (4-00), M Guckian (1-04, 0-02f). Subs: L O’Dowd (0-01) for L Fox (42); M Devanney (1-01) for C La Guen (42); R McLoughlin for E Guckian (53); V Egan (1-00) for A Clancy (58); M Heslin for E O’Dowd (58); E Quigley for C Owens (62); A McKeown for S McLoughlin (63).

Antrim: A McCann, K McConville, E Kelly, N Killen, N Webb, M Hanna, G Shannon, L Dahunsi, A Tubridy, C Taggart, E Morgan (0-01f), M McGarry, N Jones (0-01), E Rocks, A Taggart. Subs: E Bradley for N Killen (HT); D O’Reilly for C Taggart (36); E Rocks for M Hanna (46); D Boyd for E Kelly (50); A Carleton for M McGarry (53).

Referee: Paul Clifford (Buncrana)

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