World League 2: Ireland women beat Canada in Dublin

Kate Dillon scored in Ireland's 2-1 win over Canada on Sunday
Kate Dillon scored Ireland's second goal with just over five minutes left at Belfield

Goals from Aine Connery and Kate Dillon helped Ireland make it two wins out of two games at the World League 2 as they defeated Canada 2-1 at Belfield.

Ireland keeper Emma Gray had to make a great save to deny Sara McManus's penalty stroke before Connery put the home side ahead on 22 minutes.

Irish second-half pressure eventually told as Dillon fired the second goal with just over five minutes left.

Thea Culley pulled back a late goal for Canada but Ireland held on to win.

The win followed Ireland's 5-0 hammering of Ukraine on Saturday in the tournament which forms part of the Olympic qualifying process.

After missing three early chances, Ireland did have to survive an early scare when Karli Johansen's corner shot bounced on to Cliodhna Sargent's foot on the line.

Gray had to produce a spectacular diving save to deny McManus from the resultant penalty stroke in a key moment in the contest.

The Irish took the lead in the 22nd minute when Chloe Watkins' excellent incision down the right wing drew a penalty corner with Cliodhna Sargent applying the pace for Connery to redirect into the roof of the goal.

In the second half, Canadian keeper Kaitlynn Williams made fine saves from Megan Frazer and Gillian Pinder before Dillon struck Ireland's second goal with just over five minutes left.

Culley's reply with two minutes remaining came to late to unhinge the Irish.

The result keeps Ireland on top of Pool A ahead of Tuesday's game against Turkey when a draw will be enough for the Irish to progress to the knockout stages of the qualifier.

"I thought we probably had the run of the match," said Ireland coach Darren Smith after the game.

"It's nice to have three more points and still have room to improve."

The Irish must finish in the top two in the tournament to maintain Olympic qualification hopes.

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