Galway and Donegal continue to light up the Lidl National Football League as the top flight’s runaway leaders both maintained their perfect starts to the season.
Sarah Conneally’s goal helped Galway to a convincing Connacht derby victory against Mayo at MacHale Park, while Karen Guthrie, Róisín Friel and Geraldine McLaughlin all found the net for Donegal in their two-point win over Tipperary in Convoy.
Victories over Mayo in last year’s Connacht final and the All-Ireland quarter-final meant Galway entered this league clash high on confidence, and once again Tim Rabbitte’s side didn’t disappoint.
Playing into a strong wing Galway still led by two at the break, while Conneally’s goal ensured there would be no Mayo comeback.
In Convoy all the significant action happened in the second period when two quick goals from Guthrie and McLaughlin opened out a ten-point lead. Tipp charged back thanks to goals from Anna Rose Kennedy and Roisin Howard, but Maxi Curran’s side held on to win.
Champions Dublin overcame a spirited challenge from Westmeath at the DCU Sportsgrounds on Sunday to make it three wins on the bounce.
Despite the best efforts of Westmeath attacker Anna Jones, the experience of Carla Rowe and Noelle Healy helped the Sky Blues to maintain their push for a semi-final spot.
Cork ignited their hopes of reaching the knock-out stages after they soundly defeated Monaghan at a sodden Inniskeen.
Orla Finn was the chief scorer with a 1-8 haul, while further goals from Áine Terry O’Sullivan, Libby Coppinger, Ciara O’Sullivan and Doireann O’Sullivan gave Cork the three match points.
Finn was untouchable at times in this game, and all of the first five scores fell to the dangerous attacker. After a dominant opening period Cork held a 3-6 to 0-0 lead and Monaghan’s first score didn’t arrive until the 38th minute when Muireann Atkinson kicked her first of four frees, but even at that stage there was no hope of salvation for the home side.
In Division 2 Armagh also kept their winning record intact with a three-point win over Tyrone in Garvaghey. After trailing by a point at the break, Tyrone took the lead with a goal, but Aimee Mackin punched her seventh goal in four games nine minutes after the restart.
Waterford claimed a 3-7 to 0-15 narrow win away to Cavan, their second win of the competition, while the game between Kerry and Wexford was postponed due to heavy rain in the area, as was Clare versus Laois.
In Division 3 the game between Kildare and Offaly had to be abandoned before half-time as conditions worsened dramatically. Roscommon picked up their third win of the competition, with Niamh Feeney’s first-half goal proving crucial as Down launched a late comeback, and in the clash between Longford and Meath, the visitors to Pearse Park won out thanks to a handful of goals. Sligo also claimed victory in Cloonacool on a 1-16 to 0-12 scoreline against Wicklow.
And in Division 4 Derry were runaway winners over Kilkenny, Fermanagh proved too strong for Leitrim, while Antrim ousted Limerick, and the game between Carlow and Louth was also cancelled due to an unplayable pitch.