BORD GAIS NATIONAL LEAGUE
Tyrone got off the mark last Sunday in the Bord Gais national league with a spirited improved display against Kildare, green shoots of recovery after a difficult start to the league campaign evident as goals from veteran Catriona McGahan and Sarah Donnelly helped Tyrone to their first three points of the season. Tyrone did have to withstand a late penalty scare, the effort from Doyle skimming off the post and wide with he game finely poised.
In the end six points between them perhaps was a fair reflection of the tie Tyrone on top 2-15 to 2-8 but importantly on the road up the table with bottom of the table and pointless Mayo up next in a fortnight.
Tyrone held the upper hand from the start Shannon Quinn pointing in the opening minutes as Tyrone got to grips early in the tie, an enforced change with Sinead McLaughlin missing saw Omaghs Christiane Hunter introduced at half back with Naomi McAnnulla dropping to corner back, the reshuffled look settled well and Kildare found the going tough but did go in at the break just two points down, a goal for the hosts coming late in the half cancelling out the good work of McGahan 1-2, Joline Donnelly 0-2 and Gemma Begley 0-1. Martina Dillons game plan was upset though when injury forced Eimear Teague and Eilish Gormley off, Teague still suffering the after effects of last weeks head injury sustained against Laios. Maria Donnelly and Clodagh Poyntz introduced. There was still plenty of zip about Tyrone throughout the half to cause their hosts problems yet it was 1-6 to 1-4 at the short whistle.
Tyrone got off the mark early in the second half 0-5 scored in a blistering ten minute after Kildare had closed the gap to a point, Joline Donnelly was especially sharp after her return last week from a long term lay off (she finished with 0-5 herself). Cathy Donnelly 0-2 and the ever running Aishling O’Kane getting on the scoresheet in that bright spell. Kildare found the scores hard to come by, they hit a further 0-3 in the half and also found the net after a neat move but it was set to be Tyrones day, the final ten minutes, which have been an issue for Tyrone in recent outings saw them finish strong with Quinn and Donnelly taking charge at midfield , the defence composed and the forwards still full of running.
Clodagh Poyntz fired over 0-2 while Begley and Joline Donnelly added to their tally.
There was one blip when Kildare had that goal chance from the penalty spot, they missed while at the other end Sarah Donnelly ended the tie as a contest when she found the net late on. A much improved display and those green shoots of revival were very very evident as Tyrone pressed on to claim a vital win with Mayo and Cork still to come. Hunter, Mc Gillion and Woods combined well in defence while McAnulla, Dooher and substitute Maria Donnelly made life difficult for their opponents. The midfield sound while up front once again McGahan rolled back the years as the Donnellys pulled the strings.