Monaghan finally curtail Staunton to shade clash with Mayo
MONAGHAN scored a crucial victory over Mayo yesterday in Division 1 of the National Football League.
The hosts came with a strong second-half performance to run out 0-17 to 1-9 winners at Emyvale and remain in the hunt for top flight honours.
Despite playing against the breeze in the first half, Monaghan led by 0-8 to 0-6 at half-time as Cora Staunton hit all but one of Mayo's scores before the break.
Approaching the finish, Monaghan had surged well clear before Mayo hit 1-2 in the last five minutes to bring a degree of respectability to the scoreline.
Clodagh Martin netted for Mayo, but Monaghan were the more impressive force in front of goal and had fine performances up front from Ciara McAnespie, Niamh Kindlon and Catriona McConnell.
Monaghan also switched Yvonne Connell onto Staunton before the second half and that move worked a treat as Mayo's main threat was stifled thereafter.
Such is Staunton's class that she still managed to finish as her team's leading scorer with eight points while Christina Reilly also caught the eye in a solid Monaghan defence.
In Division 2, pace-setters Armagh lost for the first time this season as they were surprised on home soil in Cullaville by Meath.
The Orchard County lost out by 0-8 to 1-7 as a strong first half performance laid the foundations for this Royal County success.
The visitors led by 1-6 to 0-3 at half-time as 1-2 for Elaine Duffy and three Bridget Lynch points helped to put the Leinster outfit firmly in the driving seat.
Shauna O'Hagan finished with four points for Armagh, while Duffy added a second half point for Meath to finish with a personal haul of 1-3.
In Division 3, Waterford maintained their 100pc record with a narrow 1-10 to 3-6 victory over Longford at Fraher Field, Dungarvan.
The hosts found themselves a point down on the stroke of full-time but Grainne Kenneally struck an equaliser before Sinead Ryan sealed the win in stoppage time.
Waterford's win was sweet revenge for their intermediate championship defeat against the midlanders last year.
All the goals came in the opening half yesterday as Louise Ryan struck for Waterford while a Denise Murtagh double and another from Edel Quinn helped Longford to lead by 3-4 to 1-5 at half-time.
And in Division 4, Limerick crushed Kilkenny by 1-19 to 0-3.
The Shannonsiders led by 0-9 to 0-1 and finished with 11 different names on the scoresheet, including a six-point haul from Catriona Davis and 1-1 from Niamh Richardson.
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