FOOTBALL: Glentoran girls too strong for East Belfast in Challenge Cup

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Glentoran Belfast United claimed the Toals Women’s challenge cup with a resounding 14-0 victory over local rivals East Belfast Ladies.

Glentoran took the lead inside six minutes as Rachel Rogan fired the ball across goal to Ali McMaster and she hammered the ball into the roof of the net leaving East Belfast keeper Alex Babb with no chance of keeping out.

Rogan then created a chance of her own on seven minutes as she cracked a powerful shot from just outside the penalty area of the post. However, the Glens doubled their lead on fifteen minutes as Rogan was played in by Nadene Caldwell and she placed the ball into the net out of the reach of Babb.

It was all Glentoran and they were nearly three up inside twenty-five minutes as Jessica Foy hit a stinging low shot from outside the area only for the ball to drift just wide of the target, Billy Clarkes side were to get their third two minutes later as Rebecca McKenna fired in from four yards out after Sam Kelly had flashed a cross across the face of goal.

Three then became four on twenty-seven minutes as Kelly Bailie fired home a fantastic free-kick from just outside the box into the near post to surely wrap up the victory before the interval. To the credit of East Belfast Ladies they weren’t giving up on the fight as Shelly Crawford was denied by a last ditch Foy tackle when in on goal.

Clarkes side were going to go into the break five nil ahead as on the stroke of the interval McMaster doubled her tally when she was played in by a defence splitting Makayla Mullholland pass and she rounded Babb to finish with ease.

Minutes into the second half it was to be six as McMaster was to complete her Hat-trick as she chipped the ball over the keeper from three yards a delightful finish. Six was to become seven as Mckenna added her fourth five minutes later when Babb kept out a Rogan shot the ball falling to the feet of the Glentoran midfielder and she planted her shot into the empty net.

East Belfast were tiring and struggling with the sheer power of the top division side as the Oval based club added an eighth when substitute Lauren Wade got on the end of a Foy cross to steer the ball low into the net from four yards out.

Northern Ireland international Wade added her second in as many minutes as Rogan’s shot was tipped away by Babb the ball falling to the winger and she tapped in with ease in what was proving to be a superb night for the girls in green.

Double figures were to be hit on seventy-nine minutes as East Belfast heads dropped when yet another substitute Cleo Neese Taggart danced her way through the defence to drill the ball across the face of goal and into the far right hand corner of the net.

Rogan then added yet another goal on eighty-two minutes as the clinical striker picked up a Neese Taggart pass to place the ball through the legs of Caroline Hogg after Babb had gone off with an injury.

As the game neared its close Glentoran added a further two goals when the fantastic Wade skipped her way into the box to meet a loose ball after Foy had fired a low shot of the inside of the post the scoring concluded in the final minute when Tash Bamford deflected a low shot into her own net after a Wade cross across goal.

Player of the match Rebecca McKenna