Poor performance by Longford
ladies in heavy defeat against Leitrim

Mairead Reynolds (left) and Geraldine McManus who were in action for the Longford ladies against Leitrim in the National League Division 3 game on Sunday last. Photo: Declan Gilmore
Longford ladies slumped to another defeat and are still without a point in Division 3 of the National League after being comprehensively beaten by neighbours Leitrim at the Dromod grounds on Sunday last.

Longford ladies slumped to another defeat and are still without a point in Division 3 of the National League after being comprehensively beaten by neighbours Leitrim at the Dromod grounds on Sunday last.

It’s hard to believe how far back Longford have gone since Diane O’Hora was in charge; they will find it hard to stay in Division 3 and if they don’t improve they will make a swift exit from the Championship this year.

A number of key players have left and it’s quite a changed panel but on recent performances Longford just look devoid of ideas. On Sunday they were well beaten and Leitrim could have won by a lot more in a very one-sided game that was switched from Pearse Park due to snow on the pitch.

Both sides had early goal chances before Leitrim opened the scoring in the sixth minute. Longford replied with a pointed free from Michelle Farrell minutes later to level the game.

In the 12th minute Leitrim got their first goal through Aine Tighe and she followed up with a pointed free to put five between the sides in the 16th minute. Orla Noonan had a goal chance for Longford in the 18th minute but put her effort wide. In the 23rd minute Michelle Farrell got her second point of the game.

Aine Tighe got her and her side’s second goal in the 27th minute and then Michelle Heslin fired over a great point to put Leitrim ahead by seven points at the break, 2-3 to 0-2.

Longford got their third point minutes into the second half through Sabrina Hackett but amazingly it was to be their last score of the game as Leitrim completely took control.

Aileen Maguire hit over three points (two frees) to extend Leitrim’s lead to nine points by the 39th minute. Sarah McLoughlin then pointed a fantastic effort to put 10 between the sides.

Michelle Heslin had a goal chance in the 43rd minute but shot straight at Longford keeper Jessica Stewart. Maguire was on target soon after as Leitrim didn’t let up on the scoring and Longford struggled to contain them.

Michelle Heslin was causing problems and got a point in the 46th minute before having another goal chance. Substitute Emma Guckian got on the scoresheet in the 51st minute with a nice point and four minutes later she raised the green flag when she finished a pass from another substitute Liadh Braughton into the net.

Longford then made a raft of changes but still couldn’t get any scores despite having some possession in decent positions.

Two minutes from the end Leitrim got their fourth goal when Liadh Braughton set up Brona O’Rourke and she made no mistake. Melissa Hewitt got the final score of the game in the 60th minute as Leitrim had 20 points to spare over a very disappointing Longford side.

LEITRIM: Michelle Guckian; Christine Quinn, Mairead Stenson, Caoimhe Canning; Aine Heslin, Lorraine Brennan, Anna Conlon; Sarah McLoughlin (0-1), Niamh Tighe; Michelle Heslin (0-2), Deirdre Ward, Ailbhe Clancy; Aileen Maguire (0-4, 2 frees), Aine Tighe (2-2, 1 free), Brona O’Rourke (1-0).

Subs:- Liadh Braughton for A Tighe (33 mins); Melissa Hewitt (0-1) for A Conlon (42 mins); Emma Guckian (1-1) for D Ward (44 mins); Carla la Guen for C Quinn (47 mins); Roisin McHugh for C Canning (56 mins).

LONGFORD: Jessica Stewart (Clonguish); Rachel O’Farrell (Carrickedmond), Geraldine McManus (Ballymahon/Forgney), Leanne Keegan (Mostrim); Aisling Cosgrove (Longford Slashers), Orla Noonan (St Helen’s), Rebecca O’Hara (Mostrim); Mairead Reynolds (Dromard), Clare Farrell (Longford Slashers); Niamh Feeney (Carrickedmond), Michelle Farrell (0-2, 1 free), Aisling Greene (Clonguish); Aoife Darcy (Clonguish), Sabrina Hackett (Killoe, 0-1), Shauna McCormack (Carrickedmond).

Subs:- Lynn Gregg (Clonguish) for N Feeney (20 mins); Emer Fox (Killoe) for M Reynolds (42 mins); Patricia O’Hara (St Helen’s) for S Hackett (44 mins); Dervala Murphy (Killoe) for J Stewart (52 mins); Ellen Byrne (Carrickedmond) for R O’Farrell (58 mins); Megan Creegan (Ballymore) for McCormack (58 mins).

Referee: Gerry Carmody (Mayo).