MONAGHAN defeated champions Cork yesterday to maintain their 100pc record in Division 1 of the Bord Gais Energy Ladies National Football League.
The Farney County held on for a 1-13 to 2-7 victory against the Leesiders at Emyvale to make it three wins from three outings. They had to withstand a spirited fightback from the holders, who had trailed by 1-9 to 1-2 at half-time.
Monaghan took full advantage of a strong breeze in the first half to open up a seven-point interval lead. A 12th-minute goal from Amy O'Shea and two points from Valerie Mulcahy tied the scores at 1-2 to 0-5, but all six Monaghan forwards were on target during the course of an impressive first-half display.
Monaghan replied to depleted Cork's early revival by hitting another 1-4 before the break, with Ciara McAnespie supplying the home side's goal in the 25th minute.
Monaghan were content to sit back and soak up the Cork pressure in the second half and while Mulcahy converted a penalty awarded for a foot block by goalkeeper Edel Corrigan, the hosts claimed a deserved win.
In Division 2, All-Ireland senior champions Dublin continued their fine form as they defeated intermediate runners-up Waterford by 3-20 to 1-6 at St Finian's, Newcastle, on Saturday.
Dublin, relegated from Division 1 last year, are on course for a rapid return to the top flight and a 19-point success ensured a third victory from three matches.
At half-time, Dublin had this match in the bag after opening up a 2-11 to 0-1 lead with a devastating first-half display.
Full-forward Sinead Ahern, the star of last year's All-Ireland senior final, helped herself to 2-4 in this game and her two first-half goals, the second from a penalty, helped to open up a 16-point interval lead.
Michelle Ryan's 19th-minute free was all Waterford had to show for their first-half display but Ryan did add three more points in the second half, with Aileen Wall grabbing a consolation goal.
Amy Ring added gloss to the final scoreline from a Dublin perspective with the home side's third goal.
In Division 3, All-Ireland junior champions Limerick collected their first point of the campaign with a home draw against Leitrim, 1-6 apiece. Ace forward Dymphna O'Brien was the star of the show for Limerick in Rathkeale with a 1-5 haul, including the equalising point near the end.
Leitrim led by 1-4 to 1-2 at half-time as Sarah McLoughlin scored the game's opening goal for Leitrim, with O'Brien responding in kind for the Shannonsiders.
And in Division 4, captain Elaine Finn scored 3-4 for Westmeath on Saturday evening as the hosts demolished Antrim on a 3-23 to 0-4 scoreline at Kinnegad, as the Lake County side surged to the top of the table with two wins from two.