FOOTBALL: Donegal 3-7 Dublin 1-7 (TG4 All-Ireland SFC Quarter-Final)
By ALAN FOLEY (Geraldine McLaughlin of Donegal celebrates with teammate Jodie McFadden. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile)
Karen Guthrie scored two of Donegal’s three second half goals as they dumped Dublin out of the TG4 All-Ireland Senior Championship at Páirc Seán Mac Diarmada in Carrick-on-Shannon.
After a solid first half where Donegal had laid out their plans, to go in 0-4 to 0-1 in front, in the second they played the breaks to perfection, with Yvonne Bonner scoring the first goal before Guthrie added two more. Carla Rowe managed to bundle home one for Dublin in the last minute, although it was never going to change the outcome of this quarter-final.
Donegal scored the opening two points through Geraldine McLaughlin, the first of her five frees, and Amy Boyle Carr, and although Dublin got on the scoreboard ten minutes in, that was to be the last score for a quarter of an hour.
The more the half went on, the more things began to click for Donegal, with a 15-minute scoreless spell concluded with a McLaughlin free and then another on 28 minutes. Donegal had edged into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead by the break.
Dublin didn’t manage a point from play in the first period yet it took less than 20 seconds for Lyndsey Davey to do it after half-time, with the words of manager Mick Bohan still ringing in her ears.
McLaughlin, though, added two more frees, either side of another Tyrell point and it was 0-6 to 0-3 for Donegal on 40 minutes. Their spirits were further lifted with the introduction of former captain Guthrie, who was named to start but had been carrying a problematic ankle injury of late.
Three minutes later, Bonner slammed past Ciara Trant for a 1-6 to 0-3 lead, with Boyle Carr bursting into space down the right and having the presence of mind to look up and lay the ball inside.
Donegal stuck by their gameplan though, with a long Niamh Hegarty ball finding Bonner, who laid off for Guthrie to add a second goal on 49 minutes and the dream was becoming reality.
Dublin were reeling and fluffing their lines and five minutes later a boomer from Guthrie which was dropping short, fell into the net with Tanya Kennedy’s presence perhaps distracting Trant in goal. Donegal, needing to pinch themselves, were ten points up, 3-7 to 0-6.
Dublin kept pushing and scrambled a 59th minute goal from Rowe after Caoimhe O’Connor’s first shot was blocked. For Donegal, it was one of their most famous days.
Scorers – Donegal: K Guthrie 2-1, G McLaughlin 0-5 (5f), Y Bonner 1-0, A Boyle Carr 0-1.
Dublin: C Rowe 1-3 (3f), H Tyrell 0-2 (1f), L Davey 0-1, J Dunne 0-1.
DONEGAL: R McCafferty; E Gallagher, E McGinley, T Kennedy; D Foley, S Twohig, T Hegarty; K Herron, Nicole McLaughlin; Niamh McLaughlin, R Rodgers, A Boyle Carr; N Hegarty, Y Bonner, G McLaughlin.
Subs: K Guthrie for T Hegarty (40).
DUBLIN: C Trant; J Tobin, L Caffrey, L Magee; A Kane, M Byrne, S Goldrick; J Dunne, K McDaid; N Owens, C Rowe, K Sullivan; H Tyrrell, C O’Connor, L Davey.
Subs: N Hetherington for Sullivan (48), S Kileen for Owens (58).
Referee: Kevin Phelan (Laois).