Report: WNL: Athlone Town 4-2 Rovers

Hosts Athlone Town had to work hard for the Women’s National League points against Sligo Rovers with a 4-2 victory as they recovered from the concession of an early goal to get back on the winning track.

Athlone started on the front foot and had a goal chance inside 60 seconds, but a timely Orna O’Dowd interception averted the danger.

The hosts were rocked in the fourth minute when Sligo Rovers hit the front after finding the net with their first meaningful attack as Amy Boyle-Carr finished well from inside the penalty area.

Athlone’s response was to launch a series of attacks that tested Bit O’Red ‘keeper Amy Mahon who was eventually beaten in the 15th minute when a Gillian Keenan effort nestled in the corner of the net.

Seven minutes later Keenan had Athlone in front when she scrambled the ball across the line in a crowded goalmouth.

Athlone finished the half with a flourish and Kellie Brennan capitalised on some hesitant defending by the Bit O’Red to claim a third goal for the hosts a minute before the break.

Athlone dictated the early second-half exchanges, but it wasn’t until the 65th minute that there was any serious goalmouth action when Sligo Rovers created an opening.

Emma Doherty got on the end of a fine move, but her shot was saved by Niamh Coombes.

At the other end Roisin Molloy went close for Athlone before the Bit O’Red got back into contention when Paula McGrory rocketed a header past Coombes from a Gemma McGuinness cross in the 77th minute.

Emma Doherty had a chance of an equaliser following some hesitancy in the Athlone defence soon after, but the danger was averted and in the final minute the hosts sealed the win when substitute Emily Corbett finished to the net.

Athlone Town – Niamh Coombes; Kayleigh Shine, Jessica Hennessy, Muireann Devaney, Gillian Keenan, Kellie Brennan, Laurie Ryan, Madison Gibson, Kelsey Munroe, Roisin Molloy, Scarlett Herron.
Subs – Kate Slevin for Gibson 53 mins, Emily Corbet for Herron 71m, Lucy Ann Grant for Molloy 86

Sligo Rovers – Amy Mahon; Leah Kelly, Orna O’Dowd, Gemma McGuinness, Lauren Boles, Emma Doherty, Amy Roddy, Kerri O’Hara, Paula McGrory, Amy Boyle Carr, Sarah Kiernan.

Subs – Fiona Doherty for O’Hara half-time, Katie Melly for Kelly 65 mins, Keela Scanlon for Roddy and Aife Haran for Boyle-Carr both 74m, Lauren McLellan for Kiernan 83m

Referee – Dave Connolly.