BLUES EDGE OUT CLIFTONVILLE AFTER THRILLING FINALE
Linfield edged out 10-player Cliftonville in a five-goal thriller at Solitude with most of the action coming in the closing stages.
The Reds took a deserved early lead when Toni-Leigh Finnegan converted from the penalty spot after Kerry Taggart had been felled by Blues goalkeeper Nicole Adams.
The visiting goalkeeper came worse off in the challenge and eventually had to be replaced by Kathryn McConnell.
Linfield began to dominate more after half-time and the hosts were reduced to 10 just before the hour mark as Megan Weatherall picked up her second yellow card.
Ashley Hutton’s long-range effort struck the post before Ebony Lecky struck twice, either side of Katie Dickson’s header, as the champions built up a late two-goal lead.
There was still time for Finnegan to net her and the Reds second of the game in a late rally with a long-range strike but Linfield picked up the points.
Cliftonville Ladies: Currie, Finnegan, Moran, White, Carson, McConnell, Rooney, Taggart, Morgan, Connolly, Weatherall subs McAuley, McHenry, Thompson, Canavan, Norney
Linfield Ladies: Adams, McFrederick, Hutton, Carleton, Howe, Bassett, Burrows, McKenna, Magee, Leckey, Donnan subs Fitzsimmons, Smyth, Dickson, McConnell, McMaster