||14 - 39
Enniskillen ladies played their fourth league fixture away to Malone in the Ulster Womens Championship last Sunday coming off the back of a hard fought draw with Cavan the previous week. The game started at a ferocious speed with Skins catching the ball from the kick off and, after the very first ruck of the game, scrum half Noreen Nethercott passed cleanly out the back line and fast hands found Etna Flannagan who went dashing over the line to score Enniskillen’s first try after only 3 minutes of play.
This quick try set the scene of things to come and Enniskillen kept up the relentless pressure on the Malone defence. The 2nd try came shortly after with Helen Carleton once again winning the ball after some very strong work at the ruck. Malone were penalised for an infringement at the breakdown and Nethercott was quickest to react with a quick tap she passed to outside centre Sophie Armstrong who hit a huge hole in the Malone defensive line and went sprinting to score a very well deserved try to leave the score line 12 – 0.
Shauna Murphy at out half had a superb kicking game and she utilised the wind well in her kicks to touch making great territory. Enniskillen’s line outs throughout the game were strong, with jumper Leona Connolly continuously securing the ball which created a solid platform for the entire game.
Skins continued to put the pressure on the Malone defence with further scores coming from Etna Flannagan and Sarah Armstrong, the latter scoring her first try in a Skins jersey. Armstrong’s try showed her class by catching a Malone cross field kick, turning on the after burners to score a slick try in the corner, leaving the score at 22 – 0 at half time.
The second half was a much tougher affair with Malone using their army of substitutes effectively along with the strong wind at their back. Malone put on sustained pressure on the Skins defence pinning them back in their own 22.
Enniskillen battled hard to keep them out but Malone eventually broke the line, making the pressure tell by coming away with 2 converted try’s within 15 mins of play, the score now 22 -14.
In spite of a bout of travel sickness, Sarah Teague, playing at centre, took the bull by the horns and hit a devastating line for a crash ball, bursting past her opposite number and hot footed it to score a fine try which was the impetus that Skins needed. Not to be out done, Etna Flanagan grasped her chance at glory when she received the ball in her own 22 and with eyes on the prize sprinted to the try line like a gazelle in heat for her hat trick.
Enniskillen now with the wind back in their sails took a grasp of the game and began to put some well worked phases together. Out half Shauna Murphy took control of the game and directed the forwards and backs expertly. Rucks became more secure and the attacking plays were making great ground, panicking the Malone defence, and it wasn't long before the gaps in their defence were exposed. No 8 Leona Connolly exploited the disjointed Malone defence and her piercing greyhound run brought play up to the Opposition 22. Enniskillen were set on getting another try and had two attempts held up over the line. From the resulting scrum the pack knew they would have to dig deep as the contest had been tough throughout the match. After several phases prop Ashling Maguire crashed over in the corner for a hard fought try to leave the final score 39 – 14. A special mention for Dawn Corrigan on her debut game who had a solid first performance. Enniskillen’s next game is at home on 13th November against Derry. Training continues on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6.30pm.