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Friday 15 Sep 2023
Glens and Reds through to Electric Ireland Women's Challenge Cup decider

Cliftonville Ladies and Glentoran Women will contest next month's 2023 Electric Ireland Women's Challenge Cup final.

Holders Glentoran took a step closer to lifting the trophy for the fifth time in a row with a two-goal defeat of Sion Swifts Ladies while Cliftonville hit three late goals to eventually see off Championship opponents Lisburn Rangers Ladies.

Glentoran Women 2-0 Sion Swifts Ladies
At Stangmore Park Nadene Caldwell broke the deadlock in Glentoran’s favour after 25 minutes when, a little against the run of play, the Northern Ireland international was allowed the time and space to send an effort from distance past keeper Jennifer Currie.

Sion might have levelled moments later only for skipper Tasmin McCarter to nod off target from close range while, a short time after thar, Demi Vance thought she had doubled Glentoran’s lead only to be ruled offside after connecting with Chloe McCarron’s cross.

The Glens looked the more likely to find the net as the first half progressed with Caldwell almost doubling her tally from distance while Joely Andrews was denied by Currie.

Glentoran kept pressing after the break, and eventually bagged their second ten minutes after the restart when Kerry Beattie slotted home into the empty net after Emily Wilson’s right sided cross had caught out the Sion defence.

Sion were presented with a huge chance to claw their way back into the game after Cora Chambers floated over a corner to the back post but Teegan Lynch could only head it narrowly wide from close range.

Cliftonville Ladies 4-1 Lisburn Rangers Ladies
Cliftonville battled hard but eventually saw off the challenge of NIWFA Championship side Lisburn Rangers Ladies at Seaview.

Scoreless at half-time, the Reds came closest to breaking the deadlock when Hannah Doherty clipped the crossbar with a free-kick from the edge of the area.

Cliftonville found a way through five minutes into the second half through Victoria Carleton’s low effort after Kirsty McGuinness had laid the ball off into her path.

However Rangers levelled just three minutes later when Eve Reilly reacted quickest to knock home the loose ball after Ellie-May Dickson’s initial effort had come back off an upright.

But the Reds hit three goals in a devastating eight-minute spell later in the game.

John McGrady’s side regained the advantage on 73 minutes after Marissa Callaghan’s flick went off the unfortunate Kathryn McConnell into her own net.

Then, a couple of minutes after that, Callaghan got her name on the scoresheet following a superb run that ended with a cool finish.

And with seven minutes remaining Carleton made sure of Cliftonville’s place in the final with her second of the evening after Callaghan had dispossessed the keeper to slot home into the unguarded net.