Two Donegal girls played their part as Ireland’s ladies clinched the Triple Crown for the first time in their history thanks to victory over Scotland today.
Larissa Muldoon from Cappry, Ballybofey, and Nora Stapleton from Fahan were the half-back partnership, the respective scrumhalf and fly-half, as Ireland defeated Scotland 30-3.
Muldoon is a student in Cardiff and plays with UWIC (Cardiff Metropolitan University) and Stapleton, who played Gaelic football for Donegal, is on the books of Old Belvedere and Leinster.
They will be targeting a home win over France in two weeks’ time and a potential Grand Slam if they can also overcome Italy on the final weekend.
Having fallen behind to an early penalty from Scotland centre Lisa Ritchie, Ireland knuckled down and Niamh Briggs - who had a terrific game at full-back - kicked them level in the 23rd minute.
Philip Doyle’s side pushed on to take an 8-3 interval lead with a sweeping 27th minute move ending with Alison Miller touching down in the corner.
Briggs landed a penalty after Scotland out-half Tanya Griffith was sin-binned for persistent infringements, Ireland settled back into their stride and the tries duly came.
Miller scorched over for her fifth try in two outings, finishing off in clinical fashion with the initial damage done by a surging Briggs run.
Briggs converted for an 18-3 scoreline and also added the extras to a well-merited try from flanker Siobhan Fleming, a player who has really grasped her opportunity in the last two matches.
The icing on the cake was a late fourth try from Briggs whose conversion attempt came back off the upright.
She finished with 15 points as the girls in green stormed home in the closing stages, making history with a first Triple Crown and keeping on track for a maiden RBS 6 Nations title.
Ireland defeated England 25-0 in Ashbourne earlier this month, the first win over the old enemy in 18 matches and only England’s second loss in 40 internationals. Ireland opened with a narrow 12-10 win over Wales in Port Talbot.