GERALDINE MCLAUGHLIN and Emma McCroary scored eight goals between them as Letterkenny Institute of Technology ladies breezed past IT Tallaght in the Donaghy Cup semi-final.
Letterkenny Institute of Technology 11-10 Institute of Technology Tallaght 2-7
In difficult conditions – with a belting shower at the end of the first half at O’Donnell Park – Eamon O’Boyle’s side hit the ground running and although they went through the motions on occasion, were still comprehensive winners.
They can now look forward to a final next Tuesday at a Dublin venue against IT Blanchardstown, who defeated Limerick IT 2-10 to 1-8 in the other semi-final this afternoon.
With 4-4, McLaughlin was her typical impish self and when the Termon sharpshooter moved out the field to play more of a playmaker role, McCroary – from Robert Emmets – took up the mantle inside and finished the afternoon with 4-3.
Sarah Jane McDonald scored 2-1 and substitute Lucy O’Flynn also found the net.
McLaughlin scored a goal in each of LyIT’s first two attacks, firstly working an opening for herself in the second minute and then shooting into the bottom corner on three minutes.
When McDonald hit her first goal on nine minutes, LyIT had scored three goals before they’d posted a point.
For IT Tallaght, who arrived with only 13 players after the long journey, it was going to be a long way back.
McLaughlin had her hat-trick of goals by the 13th minute and McCroary scored her first goal on 28 minutes to leave it 5-7 to 1-1 at half-time in the downpour. Aisling Cusack had goaled for the visitors on 19 minutes.
Here’s the half-time downpour with the rain battering down …
In the second half, McLaughlin added a goal and a point to get things moving before McDonald rounded off a flowing move on 36 minutes to make it 7-8 to 1-1.
ITT improved in part two and with Shauna Homan and Niamh McGoldrick in particular impressing, posted three points in succession.
LyIT, though, were still ruthless up top and McCroary – following a fine ball in from Aine Higgins – scored a fine 46th minute goal and then, just for good measure, added another after a twist and turn a minute later.
That made it 10-9 to 1-5 and McCroary scored her fourth goal on 50 minutes.
McGoldrick did pull a goal back for ITT on 52 minutes but O’Flynn, a half-time substitute, shot LyIT’s 11th goal just three minutes from time.
Letterkenny Institute of Technology: Aoife O’Brien; Annie Rose Quinn, Gemma Glackin, Victoria Kelly (0-1); Shannon McDonald, Lisa Devaney; Aine O’Reilly, Cathy De Ward; Sarah Jane McDonald (2-1), Aine Higgins (0-1); Geraldine McLaughlin (4-4), Emma McCroary (4-3), Rachael McGee. Subs: Emilie Gavin, Lucy O’Flynn (1-0), Lauren Hegarty, Niamh Rhatigan, Roisin McGloin, Anne O’Gara, Asleigh Nic Suibhne.
Institute of Technology Tallaght: Aleen McGuinness; Alanagh McMahon, Hanna O’Reilly, Rachel Hanlon; Juanita Woodlock, Aisling Driver; Jess Wall (0-1), Olwan Carey (0-1); Shauna Homan, Niamh McGoldrick (1-2), Aisling Cusack (1-0); Emma Reid, Kelli Tate (0-3, 2f).
Referee: Michael Mulhern,