Monday, March 31, 2008

Womens Division 1 and 2 to be decided

Both women's division 1 and 2 will be decided in the next week. One of the most exciting division 1 season's in recent memory sees three sides separated by just two points going into the final series of games.

Hermes open up a busy five days, playing Trinity in Santry on Wednesday night (8pm) which could see them take the lead outright temporarily. The sides drew earlier this season, though, so the Jacqui Potter cup winners will not take the students lightly.

Saturday sees Pembroke play Loreto and Railway Union finish their campaign against Trinity before the final game of the season could decide the ultimate destiny of the title takes place on Monday night when long-time leaders Pembroke face Hermes in UCD.

Division 2 should prove a slightly simpler affair on Tuesday, April 1. Bray need one point to move into an unassailable lead to moev up to the top division for the first time.

ISC Final: Pegasus 2 Ballymoney 1

Pegasus retained the ESB Irish Senior Cup as they won out in the all Ulster final, beating Ballymoney 2-1.

Both sides had their chances in the opening moments but it was Pegasus who were first to convert in the 10th minute when an excellent side step from Speers found Claire McMahon in the circle. Her splendid strike gave Pegasus the early advantage.

Despite winning six penalty corners, the Ballymoney defense, marshaled by Ireland's Bridget McKeever held strong and the first half closed out one nil to the reigning champions Pegasus.

The second half saw some great goal mouth action as both sides created chances in the circle in this fast paced match. Ballymoney found their equaliser in the 41st minute when Ballymoney won their first and only corner of the match. It was perfectly executed, finding Nikki McCaughern to draw level.

The draw was short-lived and Pegasus responded two minutes later when McMahon found herself one-on-one with the keeper. She rounded her, finishing into the roof of the net.

Ballymoney were given a golden opportunity to get back on terms soon after, earning a penalty stroke. But the experienced Lynsey McVicker uncharacteristically put high and wide.

Ballymoney continued to pile on the pressure for the closing moments of the match but cold not wrest the title from Pegasus.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Men's round-up

Sunday: Pembroke 2 (Alan Sothern 2) Corinthian 1 (Garth Ancher)
The great title decider is still on course as Pembroke were made to sweat all the way by Corinthian, playing without Lucas Piccioli. They built up a 2-0 lead thanks to an impressive first half display but Ancher's deflected strike before the break ensured a nervous second half. Ronan Gormley took one off the line and Nigel Henderson - in place of David Harte who was at Old Trafford - pulled off an excellent diving stick save to keep his side ahead. Pembroke did have plenty of chances too to kill the game but Ross Murray was in outstanding form.

Saturday: Monkstown 0 TRR 2 (Mitch Darling, Michael Maguire)
Rovers gained a modicum of revenge for their ISC defeat two weeks ago with a controlled win over Monkstown. They were briefly five points clear of Pembroke but their win over Corinthian leaves two between the teams. Pembroke face All-Ireland league chasing Fingal in a battle to decide if Rovers or Wanderers hold the upper hand going into the final game.

Glenanne 3 (Stephen Butler, Gary Shaw, Paul Fitzpatrick) Corinthian 2 (Davy Carson, Lucas Piccioli)
Corinthian could not capitalise on a tired Glens team after their European exploits. Carson gave Corinthians the lead but were soon pegged back to a 3-1 deficit which means they will now have no chance of getting fourth spot. Glenanne, on the other hand, have guaranteed third.

UCD 3 (Luke McSharry, David Storey, Robbie McFarlane) Bray 3 (Robert Pearson 2, Simon Cox)
Bray picked up their first point of the season but it does not look likely to be enough to get off the bottom. They have two matches remaining but will need to get a point or three out of Glenanne to get into the play-off match. They were pegged back by former Rovers trio McSharry, McFarlane and Storey.

YMCA 1 (Mikey Fry) Kilkenny 2 (Hugh Kelly, Stephen Thompson)
Kilkenny survived conceding a penalty stroke and a number of penalty corners to overcome YM for a second time this season after their cup win, in this battle of 7th and 8th.

Women's Senior League Round-up

Hermes 1 (S McDonnell) Old Alexandra 0
This weekend saw the title race take, potentially, its most decisive turn as Hermes win over Alex saw them take top-spot for the first time season. Hermes hold the advantage going into their title decider with Pembroke. They snuck by an Alex side much improved in recent weeks, following their midweek 3-0 win over Trinity. But they cannot now reach UCD in the race for a playoff chance for the All-Ireland league and will finish sixth in the league.

Railway Union 1 (S Dooley) Pembroke 0
Sinead Dooley's goal within two minutes of the start proved the decsive factor in inflicting Pembroke's first defeat of the season in the Sandymount derby. Pembroke now lie in third, one point behind Loreto and Hermes. Railway lie a further place back and can still nab an All-Ireland place for this season's end of season All-Irelands.

Loreto 5 (N Keegan 2, C Greally, H Matthews, S Scott) Trinity 1 (C Murphy)
Trinity's post cup final hangover continues with their second heavy defeat in a week. Loreto meanwhile are tied with Hermes on top thanks to Nikki Keegan's brace but have played a game extra.

Corinthians 0 UCD 3 (R Burke, F Braddish, M O'Connell)
UCD confirmed their fifth place and will now play off for an All-Ireland league place after thi comfortable season ender for both clubs.

TRL 1 Genesis 0
Three Rock could yet escape coming second last following their second win of the season. They survived a first half scare against already relegated Genesis, who had a goal disallowed, before winning out. They can now get ahead of Trinity if they beat Alex on Sunday and Trinity lose their remaining matches against Hermes and Railway Union.

Ireland 1 Great Britain 3

Ireland lost out to Great Britain this morning for the second time this weekend as part of their preparations for the Olympic Qualifying Tournament at this end of April.

Ireland started well, their first serious attack coming in the seventh minute. McDonough fed an excellent ball to Flinn in the circle but her shot couldn't connect fully.

Emma Clarke showed some magic to weave through Britain 's defence but her final pass drifted wide over the back line.

Britain, too, had their opportunities. In the 20th minute Alex Danson was on hand for a deflection which went high and wide before a great double save from Mary Goode kept it scoreless at the break.
GB’s persistence eventually paid off in the 47th minute when a melee in the circle lead to a soft goal by Laura Bartlet to give the visitors the lead. Me Clewlow’s straight shot doubled the advantage eight minutes laeter.

Lisa Jacob pulled one back for Ireland after a good advantage was played but GB’s two-goal advantage was restored when Danson scored with seven minutes left.

Commenting after the game Muller was content with how the weekend and match had gone "I was pleased with our performance and effort out there today. It was a similar performance to yesterday's match and overall this series against GB has been very useful for us. We are now managing to play against tough opposition for longer periods in defensive and attacking modes.

"I will be making my selection next week for the Olympic Qualifiers and then next weekend we will be playing the French at home. We will be spending quality time together as a team planning for the tournament."

Men's IJC Final

Annadale II 2 (Paul Jackson, Conor Allison)
Pembroke II (Dougie Good, Morris Elliott 2)

Pembroke Wanderers II men's team retained their Irish Junior Cup crown in a tightly fought battle with Annadale.

Annadale took the lead early on when Captain Connor Allison scored from an open play goal in only the second minute of play. Pembroke had to wait until two minutes before half time to equalise when their captain Dougie Good scored.

Pembroke took the lead just one minute into the second half through Morris Elliot before he converted once again in the 56th minute to give his side a two goal cushion.

Annadale continued to fight but it was too little too late when they clawed back a goal in the 69th minute of play with a Paul Jackson Goal.

ESB Women's IJC Final

Glenanne 5 (Paula Fitzpatrick 2; Rebecca O'Reilly; Kate O'Connor; Ciara Nugent)
Railway Union 1 (Louise McDermott)

Glenanne continued their brilliant recent run with the club’s third trophy in two weeks and sees their women continue their impressive season, still with an outside chance for the division 2 title.

The Glens opened the scoring with their first circle penetration, a well taken chance by Paula Fitzpatrick. Railway had a number of opportunities to equalise including three short corners, but a strong defense marshalled by Ali Geoffroy kept Glenanne's sheet clean.

And the Tallaght side doubled their lead in the 18th minute from a superb opportunistic goal taken again by Fitzpatrick whose excellent reflexes provided a two nil half time lead.

3-0 came in the 44th minute with Ciara Nugent on the end of an excellent penalty corner before a great pass by Captain Audrey McCormack in the 56th minute found its way to Rebecca O'Reilly for Glenanne's fourth goal of the day.

Substitute Kate O'Connor completed the Glens scoring before Railway got a consolation goal in the 70th minute courtesy of Captain Louise McDermott.

Ireland 1 GB 1

Ireland produced a vastly improved performance against Great Britain in their second match of the series, coming away with a 1-1 draw.

Ireland started strongly, rewarded in the 17th minute when Nikki Symmons’ cross was miskicked by the GB keeper. Roisin Flinn latched onto the loose ball to convert for Ireland's one nil lead.

After the break, GB came out with all guns blazing, applying a full press. But the Irish defended well, conceding just one corner that they dealt with well.

GB did find an equaliser from a quick free outside the circle, Alex Danson on hand to deflect it into the back of the Irish net.

Coach Muller was a lot happier after today's performance when he commented "I am really pleased that we played more according to our potential today it was a huge improvement on yesterday. We were sharper, more competitive and we were more creative The players should feel very good about their performance."

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Ireland 0 Great Britain 5

Ireland got off to a difficult start in their three match series, trailing 4-0 to Great Britain at half-time at UCD last night.
GB enjoyed the lion's share of territory and went ahead after 12 minutes when Sarah Thomas opened their account. Ireland won their only penalty corner in the first half after 25 minutes through Jenny McDonough but a slow push out made it easy for GB to block. Kate Walsh doubled the lead soon after before Alex Danson scored twice in jig-time through two excellent deflections just before the break.

Ireland started the second half stronger, winning four corners, but could not find the finishing touch. The British extended the lead to five in the 50th minute when Lucilla Wright fired home a reverse stick shot.
Commenting after the game Coach Muller too was obviously disappointed: "We let ourselves down tonight, we are capable of playing so much better and competing so much better than that. We weren't in the game and it is disappointing as it is a bit of a set back from where we have come.

"Luckily though we have two more games this weekend in which we can improve. We will take both technical and tactical lessons from tonight’s game and regroup before the next match."

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Monkstown 5 UCD 2

Monkstown were twice pegged back by UCD, drawing 2-2 at one stage before pulling away late on in a gritty, rather than pretty win for the Town. Gareth watkins opened the scoring before Glenn Holmes restored parity. Simon Groves and Neil Young then exchanged goals before Monkstown pulled away. Groves and Watkins both got on the score sheet again along with Alan Lewis.

Weekend preview

Basically, it’s a massive weekend of hockey this week with Leinster league action, Irish senior and junior cup finals and a chance to have a look at the national team.

In the men’s league, Three Rock get an immediate chance for revenge over Monkstown but if the coastal side get one over on Rovers again it could prove the decisive twist in the league battle.

Pembroke’s clash with Fingal is postponed due to their second’s Junior cup finals while the Glens face a tester when they host Corinthian. At the other end, its last-chance saloon for Bray as they play UCD. Anything other than a win and their two season stint in division one will come to an end.

On the ladies side, top of the table Pembroke will hope to put their Belgian adventure behind them as they take on Railway Union. Hermes, hot on Pembroke’s tail, have an easier draw taking on Old Alex, who beat Trinity 1-0 on Wednesday.

Loreto host Trinity, while already relegated Genesis take on the potentially troubled Three Rock. If Glenanne (who won 4-1 on Wednesday) and Bray end up occupying the top two spots in division 2, there could be a double promotion.
At the National Stadium, Saturday sees Glenanne looking for an impressive double as they take Railway Union 2nds in the Junior Cup in an all-Leinster final. Meanwhile Pembroke will be hoping to retain their IJC title. The ESB ISC final sees an all-Ulster match-up with Ballymoney hoping to shock Pegasus.

ESB Irish Junior Cup
Glenanne -v- Railway Union II 12.00

Men’s Irish Junior Cup
Annadale II -v- Pembroke Wanderers II 2.30

ESB Irish Senior CupBallymoney -v- Pegasus 3.45

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Clontarf support Action Breast Cancer

This weekend, on March 29, Clontarf Hockey Club are supporting Action Breast Cancer with all their ladies teams playing in pink shirts and socks.

Players will be donating money and would appreciate support, sponsorship and all other donations. They are hoping to ask supporters (and maybe the opposition players) for a few pennies on the day...
They have also "pinked" their website for the occasion...

For further info, you can contact Andrea Kavanagh,, or the organiser, Karl McDermott at

Wesley finish fifth in Europe

Leinster schools senior chmapions, Wesley College finished fifth in their European Competition in HDM, the Hague, Holland over the Easter weekend.

They finished the tournament with an impressive 8-3 win over Wellington school in the fifth/sixth place playoff with Jamie Tobin's hat-trick bringing his tournament total to six.

Wesley beat Millfield School twice and drew with eventual finalists, top Dutch club Push (they lost the final to host club HDM 4-1) but did not qualify for the upper playoffs after two losses to Ring Pass.

Kristian Fitzgerald was named as goalkeeper of the tournament.

Pool Games (Friday): Ring Pass 2-1 Wesley (Mark English); Wesley College 2 (Rob Whelan, Jamie Tobin) Millfield School 0
Wesley 0 Push 2
Saturday: Millfield School 1 Wesley 2 (Jamie Tobin, Mark English); Ring Pass 4 Wesley 1(Jamie Tobin)
Sunday:Push 0-0 Wesley
5th/6th Playoff - Wellington School 3-8 Wesley College (Jamie Tobin 3, Steven Horsfall, Mark English 2, Karl Chapple, Robert Whelan)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Pembroke made settle for third

Pembroke lost out at the last hurdle in the Eurohockey Cup Winners' Trophy in Ghent, crashing out to Italian side Catania in a penalty shoot-out in one of two finals, with the winners in each gaining promotion into Division A.

Pembroke got into the decider after topping their pool but struggled against the Italians.

Catania took the lead six minutes from time, but Lorna Hill hit back three minutes later to force extra-time.

It was all square at 2-2 in the shootout when Catania sealed victory with a sudden death penalty strike.

Host Belgian club La Gantoise beat Russian side Moscow Region 4-1 to claim the other Division A ticket into next year's European Cup Winners' tournament.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Pembroke through to the final

Pembroke are through to the final pairings which will decide who comes out on top of the Eurohockey trophy in Gent. They beat HC Moscow Region 2-1 on Saturday morning before beating Slavia Praha 2-0 today.

It sees them win their group with a 100 percent record and, as a result, an easier final match pairing against Italian side CUS Catania. Catania finished second in the other group, having lost to Belgian side La Gantoise.

A win in the final match will see Ireland promoted to the A division of European Cup Winners Cup action but it is possible this could be nominal as women's hockey could follow the male path with a European Hockey League in the near future.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Cregan named Irish captain

Ireland have announced Eimear Cregan as the new Irish Captain to take over from Linda Caulfield. The twenty-five year old from Cork Harlequins has amassed 128 caps to date and twenty goals in her seven years at senior level.

Commenting on the appointment Coach Muller said, “Eimear was a natural choice for captaincy and has the support of the team and the management. She has played in excess of 100 test caps and is a force on and off the field. I am sure that she will lead with dedication and enthusiasm.”

It comes as Muller names his Ireland squad for a three match series with Great Britain , who have already qualified for the Olympics, three times in as many days in the build-up to the Olympic quaifiers in April.

Ireland: Emma Clarke, Eimear Cregan, Roisin Flinn, Lisa Jacob, Mary Goode, Louisa Healy, Shirley McCay, Jenny McDonough, Cathy McKean, Bridget McKeever, Hollie Moffet, Louisa Moore, Ciara O’Brien, Julia O’Halloran, Clare Parkhill, Cliodhna Sargent, Alex Speers, Emma Stewart, Nikki Symmons

Match Schedule
Friday 28th March Ireland V Great Britain 7.30pm
Saturday 29th March Ireland V Great Britain 5.00pm
Sunday 30th March Ireland V Great Britain 10.30am

Monkstown come fourth in Europe

Monkstown ended up in fourth place at the high quality international U-16 Easter tournament in Valkenswaard in the South of the Netherlands. The tournament includes national, regional and district sides from several parts of the world.

They got through their group unbeaten with wins over South Holland (2-1), the Czech Republic national side (5-0), Southgate (1-0) and Wales (3-0). They also drew with Gossflottbeker THGC from Germany (0-0), Toorak East Malvern(Australia) (0-0) and Moscow (1-1).

They lost out in the semi-final 4-1 to the eventual winners an impressive Antwerp. They went 2-0 down and fought their way back to 2-1 with Simon Lowry netting, but superior skill and pace as well as tired legs got the better of the Town.

In the 3rd/4th place play-off Monkstown were up against the Australians again. The game started badly for the Town going one down from the tip off but they kept fighting and creating chances eventually levelling through a spectacular reverse shot from guest Glenanne player Shane O'Donoghue.

However, the Australians bagged a later winner. A fantastic tournament for the young town side who learnt a lot, played some great hockey, had fun and where great comraderie prevailed particularly with the Australians and the Belgians.
Squad: Stephen Cole (capt), Cian Speers, Liam Walsh, Richard Sykes, David Cole, Simon Lowry, David Watkins, Stephen Nolan, Shane O'Halloran, Eoin Kenny, Conor Stephens, Angus Pickering, Chris Hayes, Alex Fox, and guest players Shane O'Donoghue and Robert Fitzgerald.

Glenanne 5-4 CA Montrouge: Eurohockey Trophy final

Tallaght-side Glenanne won the Eurohockey Trophy yesterday thanks to an inspired Stephen Butler, beating host club CA Montrouge in Paris 5-4 in an epic final.

In a whirlwind start, the Glens found themselves 1-0 down within three minutes. But, in a wildly open game, Stephen Butler gave the Irish side the lead by the ninth minute with two drag-flicks.

He completed his hat-trick from another penalty to make it 3-2 as half-time closed in. Brendan Parsons extended the lead to 4-2 with 25 minutes remaining but the French side fought back once more, levelling the game for a third time at 4-4

But such a game was made for just one man to be the hero. Butler stepped up to net his fourth of the day with seven minutes to go and seal the title – hockey’s equivalent of the UEFA Cup.

Butler was to end the tournament as top-scorer with nine goals in three games after missing the opening 4-2 loss to Kolos Sekoia. That loss left the Glens hopes of a final place hanging by a thread.

But two subsequent 5-0 wins over Grasshoppers, Zurich and Slavia Praha with Sekoia drawing twice meant Glenanne slipped into the final to face their Parisian hosts.

To see some photos of the Grasshoppers match, click here and for some of the supporters click here

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Jermyn and Lewers star

JJ scored a drag-flick and Iain Lewers fired in a perfect cross for Edric Iding to score in HGC's impressive 6-1 win over Dinamo Kazan in the EHL:

Click here for highlights - if you do not like swearing, skip past the first minute

Chris Gregg was also in action for Loughborough in their win over Royal Antwerp. Here's the action.

And for truly the weirdest pre-match huddle, here's Rotterdam against the Waterloo Ducks.

Glenanne win group

Glenanne progressed to the final of the European Trophy with consummate ease today but the real work was done by Slavia Praha, who came from 2-0 down with 11 minutes on the clock to draw with Kolos Sekvoia and give the Tallaght side a chance of progressing.

Glens took the chance and dominated every aspect of the game against their Swiss opponents. Alan Browne opened the scoring in the 7th minute after a Graham Shaw had been palmed to him by Julian Guizetti.

Stephen Butler doubled the lead soon after with a fine dragflick low to the keeper’s right hand side.

Zurich refused to be moved from their half-court press and the Glenanne backline frequently found themselves firing the ball back and forth but they still had time to add another before the break, Butler choosing to go high with his next dragflick minutes before the break.

The second half gave the management team a chance to rest some key players as victory was already sealed but Graham Shaw still managed to bring his tournament tally to three with a wonderful reverse stick lob from the penalty spot.

Shaw, however, saved the best until last as he cut in from the right hand side, beat two Zurich defenders and slipped the ball past the hapless Guizetti. Gary Shaw, Alan Goulding and Enda Tucker all had chances to extend the lead.

Glens now face the hosts CA Montrouge who maintained their 100% record in the tournament with a 3-2 victory over SV Armenian of Austria .

Glenanne: S Doran, P Fitzpatrick, R Shaw, J Brennan, D Kehoe, Gary Shaw, S Butler , A Browne, E O’Malley, Graham Shaw, J Kane. Subs: E Tucker, D Shaw, J Goulding, A Goulding, C Murphy.

David O'Malley

Pembroke 5 Penarth 0

Pembroke got their EuroHockey Cup winners trophy off to a stunning start with an emphatic win over Welsh side Penarth. They lead the group now by two points as their group rivals Slavia Praha and HC Moscow Region drew in Gent to put the Ballsbridge side in pole position.

Blakeney claims Australian title

Three Rock's Peter Blakeney was part of the snappily title SmokeFree West Australia Thundersticks that recently won the Australian Hockey League, contested over two weeks this month.

It is the top competition of Australian hockey, with seven rounds of regular competition followed by two rounds of finals.

Blakeney scored five goals in the competition, impressive as he was not the regular drag-flicker, as well as getting his fair share of yellow cards, picking up two within 15 minutes of one match.

The win for the young Thundersticks side was even more impressive as the team had lost senior players with the retirement of Michael Boyce and Daniel Trigwell; the early injury of Richard Gibson and the broken jaw of Geoffrey Boyce just before the team left.

The players were battling it out for a spot on the national team in the lead-up to Beijing. Two players from the Thundersticks squad, as a result, join veterans Aaron Hopkins and Bevan George in the preliminary Australian Olympic squad of 24: Kiel Brown and Fergus Kavanagh.

Glenanne 5-0 Slavia Praha

Glenanne got their European Trophy campaign back on track today in Montrouge, Paris as they overcame an ill-disciplined Slavia Praha side in Paris today.

The Czech side had three men yellow carded and together with a vastly improved Glens performance, particularly in defence were Stephen Doran had little to do, they were comfortable victors.

The return of Stephen Butler and Alan Browne in midfield after they had missed the previous day’s defeat against Kolos Sekvoia allowed Graham Shaw to push into attack and improved both Glenanne’s attacking and defensive short corners. However, Brendan Parsons missed out after spraining his shoulder in that defeat.

Butler netted two dragflicks in the first 15 minutes but it wasn’t an impressive return from the six that the Tallaght side had won in that period, Patrik Busek having a wonderful game in the Praha goal.

Glens, however, were rampant and were helped by the yellow carding of Lukas Vymazal after persistent fouling from his side. Jonathan Kane took full advantage with a delightful finish from a Paul Fitzpatrick pass after the right back had made the interception.

Further chances were had by Gary Shaw and Butler , who saw two more dragflicks saved by the fearless Busek and it was the trailing side who were happy to hear the half-time hooter.

The second half saw a much better performance from the Slavia however Glenanne were determined to improve their goal difference and give themselves every chance of making the final.

Eddie O’Malley was upended in the circle and Butler stepped forward to convert the penalty stroke for his hatrick while both Johnny Goulding and Mark Lambe failed to take advantage of decent openings.

Graham Shaw finished the scoring with a wonderful counter-attack involving Devin Kehoe and Goulding while Butler sent his final dragflick attempt sailing over the bar.

Glenanne: S Doran, P Fitzpatrick, R Shaw, J Brennan, D Kehoe, Gary Shaw, S Butler , A Browne, E O’Malley, Graham Shaw, J Kane. Subs: M Lambe, E Tucker, C Murphy, J Goulding, D Shaw.

Courtesy of David O'Malley

Hockey on tv

* Eurosport will be showing some of the European hockey action today from 4pm today (Saturday).

* Setanta will be showing the recent Kate Russell All-Ireland schools competition all this week with the final on March 25. Check out and check the Setanta Ireland tv listings.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Glenanne 2-4 Kolos Sekvoia

Glenanne got their European Campaign of to a dissapointing start with a 2 goal loss to Ukrainian Champions Kolos Sekvoia today in Montrouge, Paris.

Artem Ozerskyi got Kolos off to the perfect start with a dragflicked goal in the fourth minute after a poor opening ten minutes from the Tallaght side.

The score remained the same until half-time despite chances at both ends, the Ukranians making good use of the space afforded to them on the counter-attack while Johnny Goulding went close from a Graham Shaw pass.

Eddie O'Malley got the equaliser straight after the interval after a superb run from Richard Shaw but after a period of pressure they were behind again when Volodymyr Budak finishde off a rebound.

Sekvoia took advantage soon after to extend their lead, Ozerskyi sending home a dragflick and Youryi Moroz putting the game beyond doubt with a rebound from a Stephen Doran save.

Jonathan Kane gave his side a brief glimpse of hope with a second phase short corner strike but with time running out there was no chance of a comeback.

Glens must now win their next two games to remain in with a chance of making the final on Sunday.

Courtesy of David O'Malley

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Tallaght and Lucan Echo

In the Lucan and Tallaght Echo this week there is two fairly impressive pages about Glennane - the first a report on the cup final and the second focussing on the club itself and its history.

Elsewhere, the Gazette papers ahve a couple of match reports in, one from the Rovers - Monkstown ISC match and one about the Wesley quadruple winning efforts.

Glenanne 4 Pembroke 3

Stephen Butler's hat-trick and all round performance was instrumental in Glenanne retaining the Mills Cup. His two drag-flicks in the opening 15 minutes gave the Glens the initiative they never relinquished with Butler going close to a hat-trick only to be denied by David Harte's dive.

Craig Wilson pulled one back somewhat against the run of play after a high quality move out of defence via Paddys Good and Conlon before half-time but the two goal advantage was restored after the break when Gary Shaw knocked in a reverse.

John McInroy, though, was not willing to let the game die just there - first off he reacted quickest to a rebound off former teammate Stephen Doran and then firing in a superb first-time shot from a cross from the right.

Butler was sin-binned soon after for upending the South African but was to prove the game-breaker on his return to the pitch; a third drag-flick giving the perfect tonic for the Europeans next weekend.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Jacqui Potter Final - Hermes 3 Trinity 1

Hermes proved too strong for surprise finalists Trinity to claim the Leinster senior cup for the third time in four years. It ended 3-1 but could have been more but for heroics from Ciara Rowe in the student's goal and a determined defensive effort.

Youngsters Nikki Evans and Anna O'Fanagan provided the main threat up front throughout and Liane Costello was to profit in the 10th minute. She opened the scoring, with O'Flanagan assisting.

Rowe was not to be beaten again until the second half, pulling off five high quality saves. Hermes dominated midfield with Trinity's most illustrious alumnus, Linda Caulfield, and Jenny Osbourne on top.

Fiona Connery's short corner strike doubled the score in the 47th minute before Osbourne sealed the win soon after following Evans' good work. Trinity fought back with Ciara Murphy working hard in midfield with Claire Hearnden and they got their reward, Lindsay Watson converting their first meaningful attack.

Men's Final in pictures

Women's Cup Final in pictures

Women's League Round-up

Hermes P-P Pembroke

The potential league decider will have to wait for another few days. The game was abandoned after 10 minutes due to a water-logged pitch.
Railway Union 0 UCD 0
Railway's title challenge looks to have finally ground to a halt with this scoreless draw at Park Avenue. They just about remain in mathematical contention but will need to win both their final games and hope for an unlikely set of results to go in their favour. For UCD, they are point closer to a place in the All-Ireland qualification playoffs.

Genesis 1 (A O'Loughlin) Old Alex 2 (L Cotter, S Canning)
For Genesis, the end was finally confirmed as they put in one of their most competitive performances to date. They could not find a finishing touch, though. Despite their tough season, Alex remain in with a chance to pip UCD to fifth.

Corinthian 2 (S Walker, A Cauldwell) Trinity 2 (M Horan, C Murphy)
Trinity built up to their with a draw that also looks to have put their outisde chances of fifth almost out of reach while for Corinthian, UCD's point definitely rules them out.

Monday, March 17, 2008

A few ideas...

* I had an idea suggested to me today which I thought would be great. By all accounts, Justin Sherriff's goal last Saturday was one of the best seen in a long while. One of the players there that day said that he has since rewatched it a number of times since.

With more and more teams video-ing matches, could we get the very best clips onto Youtube or else embedded on this site? It would be great for promoting our sport and we could also try and get a 'goal of the season' up and running.

* One of the best clips I've seen recently, here's Tomislav Jamicic...

* With the Corinthian Easter festival sadly not with us this year, it may be possible to still get involved at North Down's equivalent. Other than that, Rovers May Festival is also on the horizon.

Even more titles for Wesley...

Wesley completed the senior league and cup double last Friday, winning the league title in a thriller against St Andrews in Booterstown. Wesley won the game 4-3, with a last mintue goal from Karl Smith. The other goals were scored by Robert Whelan, James Dalrymple and Jamie Tobin.

The Ballinteer school have had an incredible year, winning seven of the eight major boy's school's titles available. They only missed out on the U-14 league which was won by Sutton Park - their first hockey title at A level.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Irish Senior Cup - Men's Quarters

Pembroke 3 (Justin Sheriff 2, John McInroy) Cookstown 1 (Ian Hutchinson)
In a high quality ISC encounter, Pembroke ran out 3-1 winners against Ulster league leaders on a day when Justin Sheriff scored one of the great goals the competition has seen - running solo fully 60 metres with the ball. They went into the break at half-time 2-0 up before extending the lead to three in the second period. Ian Hutchinson pulled one back and Cookstown had a number of chances, with 10 short corners but could not score.

TRR 0 Monkstown 1 (Filip Jaros)
If the Pembroke match was noted for its quality, this was one of the most dramatic afternoons in recent ISC history. The Town survived 18 short corners, two sin-binnings and two penalty strokes to go through to the last four of the ISC after Filip Jaros' delightful first minute goal proved decisive. In a whirlwind start, they scored from their second penalty corner, switching right for Jaros to dummy Charlie Henderson before flicking high into the net. Town had to absorb huge amounts of pressure in the second half, surviving on the break with Simon Groves and Gareth Watkins providing good relief. They also had an inspired David Fitzgerald in goal. He saved both Peter McConnell's penalties, the first diving full length to stop with his stick, as well as a number of fine saves from an endless chain of drag-flicks. Kyle Good and Michael Maguire also had gilt-edged chances late on but could not get an equaliser.

* Full match report and pictures will be in the Gazette newspapers next Wednesday.

Cork Harlequins 1 (John Hobbs) Lisnagarvey 2 (Timmy Cockram 2)
Garvey made yet another ISC semi-final with Timmy Cockram scoring his eighth and ninth goals in this season's competition overcoming Harlequins to end Munster's involvement in this year's cup

Instonians 2 (Mark Gleghorne, Chris Kirk) Annadale 1 (Ian Hamilton)
Inst pulled off a shock as Ulster's fifth-placed side put paid to last year's finalists in the Ulster derby.

Semi-final draw: (Saturday, April 5)
Pembroke Wanderers v Instonians
Lisnagarvey v Monkstown

Friday, March 14, 2008

Sutton Park win under-12 league

Sutton Park School beat Whitechurch 3 - 0 to claim the under-12 schools league with two goals from Keith O'Hare and Elvis Acheson Mullen, with O'Hare getting the man of the match award.

In division 2, Dalkey School Project beat Kill-o-the-Grange in a penalty shoot-out both teams locked in a tight tie after extra time. Andrew Fogarty scored from a corner for Kill and Astria Cahill equalised from play late on for Dalkey after some persistent play from man of the match Andrew Ramsay. Dalkey went on to win the shoot out 2-0.

In the under-12 boys leagues in Leinster, 28 teams competed divided into two divisions with 14 sides in each.

Pembroke announce Euro squad

Pembroke have announced their squad for their European Cup Winners Trophy in Ghent beginning on Friday, March 21

They have been drawn in Pool A along with SK Slavia Praha (CZE), HC Moscow Region (RUS) & Penarth LHC (WAL). Pool B contains ARA La Gantoise(BEL), CUS Cantania (ITA), HC Olten (SUI), HC SW Maximal Wels (AUT).

Match Schedule : - 10am Friday 21st March v Penarth LHC10am Saturday 22nd March v HC Moscow Region 12pm Sunday 23rd March v SK Slavia PrahaMonday 24th March - Crossover games.

The full squad is:-
1. Mary Goode
2. Siobhan Burke
3. Stephanie Hall
4. Aoife O'Gorman (Capt.)
5. Emily MacNicholas
6. Rachel McKeon
7. Sarah Clarke
8. Wendy Hobson
9. Shona Doyle
10. Susan Ryan
11. Emer Harte
12. Natalie Fulton
13. Siobhan Collins
14. Lorna Hill
15. Hilda Maguire
16. Karen Hales
17. Elaine Bromell
18. Orla Canavan
19. Orla Fox

Coach: Natalie Fulton
Assistant Coach: Ian Clarke
Managers: Kathryn Henderson and Robbie Meany

Royal School Armagh claim All-Ireland

Royal School, Armagh retained the Kate Russell All-Ireland school's competition beating Leinster champions Loreto, Beaufort. Irish international Amy Stewart was the driving force, scoring twice with Anna Mae Morton getting the first goal of the game. Zara Delaney - who was voted player of the tournament - got one back for Loreto.

Laurel Hill came in third place with Jesuits in fourth place.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wesley claim quadruple - Under 13 and Junior Final

Wesley completed a clean sweep of the boy's schools titles today as they claimed the under 13 and junior cups. They were made to work hard, though, coming from behind in both matches.

In the under 13 final, Stephen Keenan opened the scoring for St Andrews with a piledriver before Wesley equalised from a penalty corner. But Andrews were back in front on the stroke of half-time Mark Loughrey deflected in a neat corner.

Ian Stewart was to become more and more influential as time wore on. He got Wesley back on terms early in the second and was well supported by the stylish Kirk Shimmins in midfield. Andrews, though, had the clearer chances to win the game in normal time.

They could not capitalise and Wesley took full advantage in extra-time. Stewart deflected home two minutes into time added on and banged another in moments later to knock the stuffing out of Andrews, making it 4-2. And there was time for one more, with Stewart setting Kai Jameson up slide a tidy finish across the goalkeeper for a final score of 5-2.

The Junior final pitted an immensely talented Wesley side complete with first eleven players from TRR, Railway and Corinthian against a gutsy Kilkenny outfit. But despite the Ballinteer side making most of the early running, the Cats opened the scoring in the 18th minute from their third penalty corner, Eoin Finnegan dribbling past two runners to roll home from six yards.

And the lead was almost doubled when Finnegan repeated the trick only to see his effort saved off the line by Peter English. Wesley, though, had a whole myriad of chances before Kyle Good eventually got the leveller in the 49th minute - banging home from three yards off the unlucky George Smyth. Smyth was truly inspired throughout.

Luke Chadwick got Wesley into the lead three minutes after after great spade-work down the right by Good before Shane Madeley profited with a neat high finish after English saw his initial shot saved.

Evan Matthews gave Kilkenny a lifeline with six minutes remaining, mopping up a rebound from Finnegan's shot but the victory was sealed when Nicholas Armstrong fired in a spectacular aerial into the roof of the net to give Wesley the full house of school's titles.

* Report and pictures can be seen in next week's Gazette newspapers.

News in brief

*Amy Stewart was honoured as one of Ireland's most promising sporting prospects at the Irish Examiner National Junior Sports Stars Awards 2007 at a ceremony in Dublin.

* Great Britain qualify for the Olympics ahead of India. India miss out for the first time in 70 years in their national game and the people are not happy...,,30200-1309046,00.html
* Loreto, Beaufort will represent Leinster up at Grange Road over the next two days in the girl's All-Ireland Schools. They are in a group with Laurel Hill and Loreto, Wexford. The tournament will be broadcast on Setanta everyday until March 25.

*Munster claimed the men's junior interpros for the third time in four years. They finished ahead of Leinster by a point. Ulster won the women's competition with Leinster in third.

*The FIH has appointed Christophe Troendle as its Director General. The 42-years old Swiss is the successor of the current FIH Executive Director Hans Bertels, who after 13 years officially retires at the end of March. Troendle will start his work at the FIH on 1 May 2008

*Ireland’s nomination for the Eurohockey Quality Club Award has been announced. Grosvenor HC has won the coveted nomination in a very tight contest and has been submitted to the EHF for consideration.

*All Youth Leaders that wish to continue to develop their coaching skills have been invited to the ‘Introduction to Tactics’ course taking place at 9.30am in UCD on March 30th. Whilst all other members of the hockey community will be paying €20, all Youth Leaders have been invited free of charge. For any Youth Leader who is interested in attending, get in contact with the IHA to book your place!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Men's Round Up

Sunday: Corinthian 0 TRR 3 (Mitch Darling, Tim Hill, Maarten Sier)
A Mitch Darling wonder goal in the first minute gave Rovers the impetus to go on and win but for a third time this season they struggled for fluidity against Corinthian. They did, however, move top of the table for the first time this season, with only Pembroke left in the race.

Saturday: TRR 4 (Phelie Maguire, Colin Huet, Mitch Darling, Maarten Sier) Glenanne 1 (Graham Shaw)
The result which made the above possible was a lot more convincing. Rovers built up a two goal lead before Graham Shaw scored from a short corner. Rovers, though, looked far more dangerous in attack, adding goals from Darling and Sier with Glenanne's best chances - again from corners - being well saved by Charlie Henderson. It meant the Glens relinquished their title for the first time in two years. In an interesting twist, Sier picked up his fifth yellow of the season, usually worthy of a one-match ban. As the disciplinary committee do not sit until a Monday, though, any ban was not effective until after the Corinthian game.

Pembroke 4 (Alan Sothern 2, John McInroy, Ronan Gormley) Monkstown 1 (Ian Horsfield)
Ronan Gormley continued his goal-scoring form from the OQT as Pembroke bounce back after their first dropped points of the season dent Monkstown's All-Ireland challenge.

Kilkenny 0 Fingal 2 (Trevor Parsons, Eamonn Bane)
Fingal moved back ahead of Monkstown as the twists and turns for All-Ireland places continue to fluctuate and has been one of the fascinating side stories this season. Monkstown will still fancy their chances with UCD on the menu twice while Fingal must play the Glens and Pembroke.

YMCA 4 (Rob Whelan 3, Richard Pedreschi) UCD 1 (Michael O'Connor)
YM schoolboy Rob Whelan shot his first Leinster Senior League hat-trick as YM all but confirmed safety as UCD will have to win their last three matches to get out of the playoff spot. They look destined for the promotion/relegation match, most likely to face an improving Suttonians side.

Corinthian 4 (Conor Motyer, Dan Williams, Andrew Sutton, Garth Ancher) Bray 1 (Simon Cox)
Corinthian still have an outside chance of possibly making the playoff spot for the All-Irelands but their run-in of Pembroke and Glenanne before a road-trip to Kilkenny is unenviable. They beat Bray to record the 100th goal the Wicklow side had conceded this season.