Brendan Graham reports from PRL Park
First half goals from Eleanor Ryan – Doyle and Aine O’Gorman saw Peamount edge out title rivals Shelbourne on a 2-1 score line this evening in what was an exciting affair.
The opening quarter of the game was played at an impressive pace with both sides sounding each other out in search of the opener.
Ciara Grant almost found Emily Whelan for the first chance of the game with an intelligent diagonal ball across the box but just put too much on it in the end.
Naoise McAloon had to be sharp on seventeen minutes when Mia Dodd hit a powerful shot from distance but it was always rising before clearing the bar.
That seemed to be the wake up call that Peamount needed. O’Gorman began finding a lot more space down the right wing with her probing crosses asking real questions of the Shelbourne defence.
Della Doherty went close on twenty minutes with a glancing header just wide of the post from a corner before the busy Eleanor Ryan -Doyle put Peamount in front.
Ireland internationals O’Gorman and Roche linked up brilliantly in the build up before Ryan Doyle got on the end of another brilliant O’Gorman cross to bundle the ball into the net from close range.
Ryan -Doyle had the chance to double the Pea’s lead from the penalty spot five minutes later after only to be denied by a fantastic Amanda Budden save to her left.
The impressive Aine O’Gorman did double their lead as the half time whistle neared leading by example once more. The Peamount captain hit a fantastic volley on the bounce following a goalmouth scramble with her effort flying past Budden.
Shelbourne’s start to the second half was identical to the first with all of the possession and some lovely passages of play in the middle of the pitch but that final pass just could not be found.
The goal did come on seventy five minutes courtesy of Ciara Grant. The initial shot from Whelan was parried back out to Grant who was sharp enough to pounce for one back.
That was as good as it got for Shelbourne despite a huge second half effort. The reigning champions held out to take maximum points.
Peamount United: Naoisha McAloon; Dearbhaile Beirne, Della Doherty, Lauryn O'Callaghan , Claire Walsh; Karen Duggan, Lucy McCartan, Aine O'Gorman, Megan Smyth-Lynch (Becky Watkins 71); Stephanie Roche (Sadbh Doyle 74), Eleanor Ryan Doyle (Tiegan Ruddy 53).
Subs not used: Orlagh Fitzpatrick, Dora Gorman, Louise Masterson, Alannah McEvoy, Niamh Reid Burke.
Booked: Megan Smyth-Lynch (68).
Shelbourne FC: Amanda Budden; Jessica Gargan, Mia Dodd (Noelle Murray 61), Pearl Slattery, Jessie Stapleton; Ciara Grant, Rachel Graham, Jamie Finn, Jessica Ziu; Saoirse Noonan, Emily Whelan.
Subs not used: Sophie Lenehan, Alex Kavanagh, Leah F Doyle, Rebecca Creagh, Rachel Baynes, Ella O'Connell, Taylor White.