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Dublin: 11°C Saturday 26 September 2020

Kerry hit Wexford for six and take one step closer to Division 1 football once again

Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh and Sarah Houlihan hit two goals each for the Kingdom, who were relegated last year.

Sarah Houlihan kicked two goals.
Sarah Houlihan kicked two goals.
Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

KERRY LADIES TOOK a big step towards the Lidl National League Division 2 semi-finals after their six-goal demolition of Wexford in Mallow.

Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh and Sarah Houlihan hit two goals each for the Kingdom, as Fiona Rochford and Bernie Breen efforts were not enough for Wexford, who are still in with a chance of reaching the knock-out stages.

Kerry got off to a flying start as they raced into a 0-3 to 0-0 lead after three minutes, but they surged clear when Miriam O’Keeffe hit the net in the sixth minute.

But Wexford didn’t lie down and tagged on a couple of good scores, before they pulled to within a point after Rochford’s goal for the Leinster girls.

Ni Mhuircheartaigh kept Kerry in the ascendancy with a couple of scores as Wexford stayed in touch at the other end, but just before half-time Houlihan rattled the net for Kerry’s second goal, which put them 2-7 to 1-6 ahead at the break.

Any hopes that Wexford held disappeared when Ni Mhuircheartaigh and Fiadhna Tagney scored goals for Kerry inside the first six minutes of the second half to put the Kingdom into a ten-point lead. Ni Mhuircheartaigh bagged her second midway though the second half, and despite Breen responding for Wexford, Kerry wrapped up the win when Houlihan hit goal number six.

In the other Lidl NFL Division 2 game Clare made home advantage pay in Doonbeg as they claimed a 1-12 to 1-9 win over Laois. The O’Moore county were ahead at half-time by 1-5 to 1-4, but despite a good showing from Fiona Kelly in the Laois goal, Clare tagged on the points to secure victory.

Kerry's Louise Ni Muircheartaigh kicks a point Kerry's Louise Ni Muircheartaigh. Source: Tom Beary/INPHO

Laois will play Division 3 football next season as they suffered a sixth straight loss in the competition, while Clare need a result against Waterford to boost their hopes of making the semi-finals, although Cavan or Wexford can still deny them.

In Division 3 Offaly have a real battle on their hands if they are to avoid relegation to Division 4 after Kildare’s strong second half gave them the win in Newbridge.

A goal from Ellen Dowling put Kildare in charge in the early stages at St Conleth’s Park, while Nessa Dooley and Jeniffer Byrne stretched their lead, which was 1-8 to 0-6 at half-time.

Marie Byrne gave Offaly hope after the restart with a quick point, but goals from Grace Clifford, Dooley and Ellen Dowling put Kildare in the mix for a spot in the semi-finals. They face Sligo in their final game, while Offaly need to beat Roscommon to have any hopes of avoiding relegation.

And in Division 4 Louth moved to the top of the standings after their double scores win over Carlow. Louth, Fermanagh, Carlow and Limerick are all on 12 points in the standings, but Darren Bishop’s side and Fermanagh have an extra game to play on their rivals.

The sides were tied at 0-7 each at half-time, but two quick goals after the restart helped Louth to the win.

Weekend’s results

Friday 29 March 2019

Lidl PPS Senior B Final

  • Colaiste Bhaile Chlair (Galway) 1-8 St Patrick’s Academy Dungannon (Tyrone) 2-7

Saturday 30 March 2019

Lidl PPS Senior A Final

  • Loretto, Clonmel (Tipperary) 2-10 Scoil Criost Rí (Laois) 3-10

Lidl PPS Senior C Final

  • Mercy SS, Ballymahon (Longford) 4-13 St Mary’s HS, Midleton (Cork) 1-9

Sunday 31 March 2019

Lidl NFL Division 2

  • Kerry 6-11 Wexford 2-11
  • Clare 1-12 Laois 1-9

Lidl NFL Division 3

  • Kildare 4-18 Offaly 0-10

Lidl NFL Division 4

  • Carlow 1-8 Louth 2-16

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Declan Rooney

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