AN enthralling contest played in miserable conditions, essentially turned in the space of two minutes at the start of the second half, when the game’s only goal propelled Enniskillen into a lead which they never relinquished.
The county town girls had trailed by two points at half time after Belcoo largely dominated the first half attacking play but crucially, they failed to capitalise on numerous scoring opportunities.
In contrast, Enniskillen produced a strong third quarter and were able to make their second half superiority pay dividends.
Both sets of players do deserve enormous credit for the manner in which they coped with the heavy rain under the Brookeborough lights.
Scores were scarce early on, two Elaine Maguire points after Terri McCanny had hit an Enniskillen opener, edging Belcoo into a water break lead.
Maguire and Aoife Corrigan exchanged scores as ‘Player of the Match’, Scarlett O’Connor and Maguire widened the gap before a last kick McCanny score left it 0-5 to 0-3 at the interval.
A 31st minute O’Connor score got Belcoo off to a flying start but within a minute a converted Keenan free, followed by Erin Tierney blasting to the net from close in, put the Gaels in front.
Despite an O’Connor response in the 34th minute, two Eimear Keenan points and a Kiah Collins score extended the lead to 1-8 to 0-7 at the second break.
Belcoo had come agonisingly close to a badly needed goal, Elaine Maguire powering her way through only to flash her low drive across the goals.
Collins hit another point on the restart but that was to be Enniskillen’s final score, the closing stages seeing Belcoo throwing everything into attack but again their finishing proved costly for the light blues.
Solid Enniskillen defending was crucial too, captain Eimear Corrigan and Erin Maguire to the forefront in limiting Belcoo to a single Michelle Cullen score.
Enniskillen; Shauna Murphy; Erin Maguire, Aoibhinn Kelly, Emer Keaney; Emma Nolan, Eimear Corrigan, Nicole Cassidy; Danielle Collins, Lauren Murphy; Orla Murphy, Kiah Collins (0-3), Aoife Corrigan (0-1); Erin Tierney (1-1f), Eimear Keenan (0-2), Terri McCanny (0-2). Subs; Megan Sharkey, Naomi McHugh.
Belcoo; Riona Keaney; Siofra McAloon, Aoife Keaney, Maria Scallon; Seana Feeley, Leona McNulty, Kelly Connolly; Eimear Higgins, Sinead Barrett; Aine Barrett, Michelle Cullen (0-1), Crona Higgins; Scarlett O’Connor (0-3), Elaine Maguire (0-4, 2f), Cara Gray. Subs; Arlene Furey, Eve Barrett, Ciana McGrath.
Referee; Mark Curry.
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