* More pictures from Saturday's match between Cookstown and Annadale by Johnny Brisbane can be seen here
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
* More pictures from Saturday's match between Cookstown and Annadale by Johnny Brisbane can be seen here
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 11:12 PM
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 10:42 PM
She is joined by four Loreto players – Nikki Symmons, Louisa Healy, Lizzie Colvin and Cathy McKean – and UCD duo Roisin Flinn and Lisa Jacob, though the latter must be a major doubt having been carried off in Monday night’s match with Railway.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:14 PM
Railway Union 2 (Kate Dillon, Emma Smyth) UCD 1 (Lisa Jacob)
Railway Union claimed their first ever women's Leinster Senior League final in over 100 years of hockey as they got the three points they needed at Park Avenue.
Victory was sealed, perhaps in the most fitting manner, by Emma Smyth's reverse-stick thunderbolt. One of the country's outstanding players this term, her second-half goal with 24 minutes remaining was one of the goals of the season and completed an incredible day on a personal level for the midfielder having received her first full international call* confirmed just a few hours earlier.
It was the decisive goal in a high quality encounter at Park Avenue and was enough to keep out of reach of Loreto. The Beaufort side can still draw level on points but, in tie situations, the amount of games won dictates the champion. Loreto can only achieve 12 league wins while this was Railway's 13th victory of the campaign from 15 games.
UCD had the best of the early chances, with Emer Lucey pulling off a spectacular block off the line to keep the game scoreless. In response, Kate Dillon emphatically roofed a switched penalty corner for a 1-0 half-time lead.
But the students are a lively outfit and leveled early in the second half when Roisin Flinn's sublime inside pass from the left channel, found international colleague Lisa Jacob one-on-one with Helen Stevenson. The Kilkenny woman deftly rounded the keeper to roll in before succumbing to what looked a nasty calf injury which ended her involvement on the night.
And then came Smyth's wonderful effort. Her path to goal initially looked well guarded as she drifted back and forth with her back to goal but she found a chink of light far out on the left edge of the circle and unleashed a rasping, rising shot to bulge the netting and restore the advantage.
A couple of nervy defensive moments ensued, including four UCD corners, but Railway held on to ensure the title.
As the champagne bottles popped in the Railway bar, coach Mick McKinnon explained that a major factor in his side's progression was a new found self-confidence to go with a talent he always believed the players had.
"When I came here, I said I had a three-year plan and year two was to win Leinster and we’re on track to hopefully win something at All-Ireland level, although we haven’t ruled out this year’s IHL.
“I just think there’s a belief now. We beat Hermes in the first league game of the season and a lot of these girls had never beaten them before. That gave them the belief to go on a roll.
"I do get a bit angry when people talk about these players not being very good, I mean there’s been some comments going round; but you can’t coach a bad team to win a title – there’s very good players in this team."
McKinnon has managed to marry a strong professional ethic in his team - aided by his impressive support team - with a certain light-hearted demeanour, creating one a unique atmosphere within his squad which, he feels, has gone a long way to scoring this maiden success.
"I said to them before tonight’s game 'I’d rather lose it our way than to win it someone else's way' but we won it our way. You see the amount of fun we have in this place?
“I wouldn’t coach if it wasn’t fun. After all, this is our chosen leisure time. If it’s not fun, why do it? Every training session we try and have a bit of craic. There’s been a couple of times this year when I’ve tried to reel them in a bit from partying a bit too hard but its part of what they are and what makes them a team."
They wrap up the title with three league games left to play while Loreto have a chance for near instant revenge on Saturday in a vital IHL group decider.
* More on this on Tuesday morning. For a couple more pics from tonight, click here
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 12:12 AM
Monday, March 30, 2009
Mary Logue named her squad of 16 from the panel of 24 for Ireland U-18s upcoming two test matches against Belgium on April 16 and 17 as she continues her preparation for the Euro Hockey Youth Nations Championship. The matches will be played at Nivelles - the venue for the U-18 Europeans in July.
Niamh Atcheler (Hermes), Natalie Barr (Lurgan), Naomi Carroll (Catholic Institute), Katie Codyre (Greenfields), Brenda Flannery (Greenfields), Orla Fox (Pembroke), Dora Gorman (Greenfields), Sarah Greene (Hermes), Sammy Jo Greer (Ballymoney), Hannah Matthews (Loreto), Ali Meeke (Loreto), Lynsey Trainor (Galway), Emile Molloy (Galway), Gillian Pinder (Hermes), Vanessa Surgeoner (Randalstown), Chloe Watkins (Hermes)
Meanwhile, Irish U-16 coach Una McCarthy announced her squad of 18 for a three test series against Belgium to be played at the National Hockey Stadium between April 7 and 9.
Squad: Rebecca Barry (Catholic Institute), Emily Beatty (Old Alex), Chloe Brown (North Down), Michelle Carey (Galway), Amy Cooke (Ballyclare), Leah Ewart (Armagh), Lauren Johnston (Lurgan), Anna Jones (Lisnagarvey), Juliette King-Hall (Hermes), Lisa McCarthy (Railway Union), Kerri McDonald (Dromore), Lucy McKee (Armagh), Louise Murray (Lurgan), Aisling Naughton (Corinthian), Joanne Orr (Armagh), Freddie Timmins (Galway), Amy-Kate Trevor (Cork C of I), Roisin Upton (Catholic Institute)
Manager: Jean McDonnell
Coach: Una McCarthy
Asst Coach: Michelle Rainey
Schedule (all at UCD):
Tuesday, April 7, 4pm - Ireland vs Belgium;
Wednesday, April 8, 4pm - Ireland vs Belgium
Thursday, April 9, 4pm - Ireland vs Belgium
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 5:40 PM
Pembroke took a major step toward reclaiming the league title from Three Rock's clutches as they held off the intentions of Corinthian at Serpentine Avenue. The 'Broke took full points to come closer to taking their first of what could be a glut of trophies this season.
Robbie McFarlane got the winner of a tense affair nine minutes from time from a neatly worked long corner move. Kilkenny took the lead but Ben Grogan's (pictured celebrating) drag-flick made it 1-1.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:10 AM
At the bottom, Corinthian look to be the side destined for a promotion/relegation playoff with Genesis after they fell 2-1 to Trinity. The students goals came from Lucy Small and Rachel Scott - the former Pembroke player so often their shining light this season - with Susie Geoffroy getting the sole response for the reds.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:05 AM
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Avoca 2 (Enda Gallanagh, Scott Wilkie) Dublin University 2 (Stu Cinnamond, Ben Hewitt)
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 11:59 PM
UCD won the battle of the students to keep alive their hopes of claiming the Irish Senior Cup for a second time - the previous coming way back in 1951. They added the scalp of fellow students Ulster Elks to their list of victims in an intriguing cup run which has seen the students beat both of Leinster's most celebrated pair of recent times - Loreto and Hermes.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 11:10 PM
The most entertaining game, though, was reserved for the men's Irish Hockey Trophy, Ulster Podium Senior One second placed side North Down edging an 11-goal thriller, beating Antrim 6-5 in an incredible end-to-end battle.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 10:15 PM
Friday, March 27, 2009
Clontarf's victory parade begins against Weston, though they do so with their first injury crisis of the season. Stephen Ludgate, Nick Burke, Andrew Poynter, Gordy Lindsay and Gareth Borland are all likely to be on the absentee list. Poynter misses out due to his involvement with the Irish cricket team, currently warming up for their world cup qualifiers.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 11:30 AM
Bray v Railway Union, 12.30pm, Loreto Convent Bray; Corinthian v Trinity, 2pm, Whitechurch; Loreto v Hermes, 12.45pm, Beaufort; Glenanne v Pembroke Wanderers, 12pm, St Mark's
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 2:37 AM
Pembroke's title bid faces a tough battle as they look to overturn their Mills Cup final defeat at the hands of Corinthian last week. Three Rock's recent draws with YMCA mean that Pembroke's destiny is back in their own hands, though any slip up and Glenanne are likely to pounce.
Monkstown vs Three Rock Rovers, 1pm, Rathdown; Pembroke Wanderers vs Corinthian, 12pm, Serpentine Ave; UCD vs Kilkenny, 4.45pm, Belfield; Fingal vs Glenanne, 1.30pm, ALSAA
Sunday: Corinthian vs Three Rock Rovers, 1.15pm, Whitechurch Park
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 2:30 AM
Railway Union II v Loreto II, 3pm, Park Avenue; Hermes II v Old Alex II, 3.30pm, St Andrews
Men's Irish Junior Cup
Cookstown II v Cork C of I II, 2.30pm, Coolnafranky; Pembroke W II v YMCA II, 3pm, Serpentine Avenue
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:57 AM
This weekend sees the first national club titles handed out as the inaugural Irish Hockey Trophy and Challenge competitions come to the final stage. Saturday sees the major Leinster interest with YMCA ladies and the men from Mullingar gunning for their first national titles.
ESB Irish Hockey Challenge Final (11am): Fermoy vs YMCA
Men’s Irish Hockey Challenge Final (1pm): Campbellians v Mullingar
Men’s Irish Hockey Trophy Final (1pm): Antrim v North Down
ESB Irish Hockey Trophy Final (3pm): Ulster Elks v Catholic Institute
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:20 AM
There is still plenty of school’s action to take in if you find yourself free next Wednesday afternoon as many of the schoolboy’s ‘B’ and schoolgirl’s Meath and District finals reach their final stages.
The senior B title has already been decided with Dundalk Grammar – inspired by school’s international Andrew Shekleton (pictured) – taking the honours, dropping just two points all season. For the other three age groups, Grange Road is the venue on April 1 for the B finals.
Dundalk remain on for a triple as their juniors take on Wesley’s B team (11.45am) after the former overcame St Andrew’s while the latter ousted Newpark in the semi-finals. At minor level a strong St Killians –organised by Fingal stalwart Tommy Parsons – beat Mount Temple in the semis to set up a tie with Dundalk (1.45pm).
At U-13 level, Newpark, under Peter Muprhy’s tutelage, take on Killian’s (10.30am) for whom Parsons outdid one of his protégés David Bane, who is currently coaching Mount Temple.
ALSAA is the venue for the emerging Meath and District finals, also on April 1. The initiative was set up a couple of seasons ago and now comprises two leagues at each of senior, junior and minor level with nine schools - Loreto Balbriggan, Loreto Navan, Mercy Navan, Royal School Cavan, Skerries Comprehensive, Drogheda Grammar, Dundalk Grammar, Wilson's Hospital, and Dominincan Cabra – competing.
Junior 1: (10am) Loreto Balbriggan v Cabra
Junior 2: (11am) Loreto Balbriggan v Drogheda
Minor 1: (12pm) Wilson's v Cabra
Senior 1: 1pm: The Senior 1 Final will be played as a mini tournament between Cabra, Wilsons, and Dundalk. All three teams were tied on points after the group matches.
Match 1: Wilsons v Dundalk; Match 2: Cabra v Loser of match one; Match 2: Cabra v Winner of match one
The Senior 2 and Minor 2 Finals will be played after Easter. Mercy Navan have reached both of these finals but are not able to play on Finals Day as they have a school trip that week to Zimbabwe.
Senior 2: Mercy Navan v TBC
Minor 2: Mercy Navan v Drogheda
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 12:39 AM
With the season hitting its peak, there’s plenty of activities and information floating about. Sign up to the IHA’s Hockey Happenings – on http://www.hockey.ie/ – for more information on many of these snippets.
* Old Alexandra are joining up with Old Wesley Rugby Club to run a Fashion Show to fundraise for both clubs on April 4, 2009 in Elm Park golf club. Tickets cost €30 and include a wine and cheese reception before the fashion show gets underway. The event will be compered by Brent Pope. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Babs Luke on 086 4011 787 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
* The ESB Irish hockey awards night is on May 23 this year and all club secretaries and branches have been contacted for nominations.
Each club and branch can nominate up until the closing date of April 14 and have been sent the link with the nomination form. Contact your club secretary now to ensure your club has nominated who you think deserves to be honoured on the night.
* There’s a second chance to see the lively encounter between Pembroke and Glenanne in the Irish Senior Cup as RTE 2 will broadcast highlights on April 4 as part of their OB Sports show. The show begins at 2.15pm.
* Newbridge HC became the first club to benefit from the Club Equipment Scheme Contract, launched recently by the IHA. The scheme is a way to reward clubs who submitted a Development Plan last year. Newbridge HC received approximately €800 worth of equipment to use for the development of their youth section. The club currently runs a youth programme in five local primary schools, catering for around 120 children.
* The EHF have announced they will discuss the feasibility of introducing a female version of the Euro Hockey League at the KO16 round in Hamburg. The direct implications that, should it be agreed for the competition to be hosted in the 2009/10 season, the number of qualification places per country will be decided based partly on results in this year’s EuroHockey Club Championships and Cup Winner’s Cup competitions.
* The Tricks 4 Sticks programme is set to spread to Arklow after success a little further south in Gorey. Three schools have been added to the list of schools to try hockey for the first time.
Tricks 4 Sticks was launched in November 2008 in Gorey and to date around 285 students from 4th to 6th class have tried hockey. It is expected that another 100 students will get involved from Arklow. The greatest achievement so far as a result of the programme has seen the creation of a Gorey junior section managed and organised completely by the Gorey HC players.
* The IHA is currently registering interest for a Tutor Training Course to run during Summer 2009 in Dublin (dates to follow) in conjunction with Coaching Ireland.
The course requires four classroom days (2 full weekends) plus a further 9 contact days as an Assistant Tutor (or attendance at 3 Level One courses) in order to fully qualify as a Level One Tutor. This initial process is to simply gauge interest in the tutor course and is not a confirmation of attendance. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the IHA on email@example.com.
* The IHA recently contacted all club secretaries to advise of a review of all its club competitions. As part of this review, all clubs have been requested to submit proposals and suggestions regarding any aspect of our current competitions.
As such all Club Secretaries have been invited to submit in writing your club's opinion to firstname.lastname@example.org at the hockey office by Friday, April 3 2009. So please ensure that your club has the chance to submit their ideas by contacting your club secretary.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 12:17 AM
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Paul Cooke’s Irish U-16 panel has been reduced to 24 for the upcoming series with Belgium, to be played in UCD on April 7 to 9.
Seven of the players who took part in the recent Leinster U-16 cup final between Railway and Three Rock are included Corinthian’s attack-minded defender Robert Burke (pictured) also gets the nod. Monkstown pair David Cole and Stephen Nolan as is Fingal’s Mark Ryan and Kilkenny’s Jeremy Duncan.
The rest of the squad is characterised by its geographical spread with players from Limerick, Donegal, Down, Antrim, Tyrone and West Cork.
Matthew Bell (Banbridge), Robert Burke (Corinthian), Nicolas Burns (Cork C of I), Ross Canning (TRR), David Cole (Monkstown), Jeremy Duncan (Kilkenny), Mark Ingram (GK) (Railway Union), Matthew Lecky (Raphoe), Shane Madeley (TRR), Owen Magee (Banbridge), Fiachra Maher (Railway Union), David McCrea (TRR), Ben McMillan (Mossley), Josh Moffett (Banbridge), Dylan Murphy (GK) (Limerick), Stephen Nolan (Monkstown), Paul Ritchie (North Down), Mark Ryan (Fingal), Ian Sloan (Cookstown), Tom Samuel (TRR), Robin Smyrl (Banbridge), Jeffrey Spillane (Railway Union), Scott Sullivan (Bandon), Darren Sweetnam (Bandon)
Reserves: Neil Gilmore (Banbridge), Matthew Rollins (Cookstown), Kirk Shimmins (TRR), Conor Montgomery (Belfast Harlequins)
Coach: Paul Cooke
Manager: Fraser Mills
Asst Coach: Coen Van Putten
Support/video: Tim Weir
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 7:23 PM
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 7:00 PM
In a statement released this afternoon, it has been confirmed that Corinthian have been cleared of any wrong-doing in relation to the registration of players for their match with Fingal on December 13.
"Decisions of the Fixtures Committee in relation to this particular issue have now twice been overturned on appeal by the Management Committee. CHC has not breached any rules or regulations and we are happy that the matter has now been brought to a conclusion.
"We have held back from making any comment on this affair until now, in order to allow the process to take its course. While this may have given oxygen to rumour and misinformation, we believe it was the proper course of action. We will not be commenting further on this case which we now regard as closed."
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 1:02 PM
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Gormley and Brennan were rotated for the second half, with Jackson and Harte taking the central roles. The game opened up marginally with Alan Sothern unlucky not to get more on a David Hobbs crash ball while Nicolas Martin Brisac caused a few problems down the right wing.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 9:16 PM
Ireland A put in two decent performances but, ultimately fell to defeat at the hands of the mighty Germans twice, unable to repeat the excellent draw in their first game.
Anna O'Flanagan gave her full international hopes no harm in scoring a goal in the 2-1 and 4-1 defeats - the latter strike equalising early in the second half of the third fixture in three days.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 9:10 PM
A 19-strong panel has been announced for the Irish u-18 squad ahead of their trip to Nivelles, Belgium on April 15 to 17 as their preparations for the summer's European competition continues.
Three Rock pair Stephen West and Kyle Good were not considered due to their potential involvement with Three Rock in the EHL while Ryan McCrea is taking a break and Stephen Cole has a major foot injury.
Ian Sloan, meanwhile, will join the travelling party on recommendation from Irish U-16 coach Paul Cooke following outstanding performances in the Burney Cup and the John Waring tournament.
Cooke has allowed Andy Smyth to take a look at Sloan in Belgium - after consultation with the High Performance Director and the player's parents. The decision has been made early in preparations for this summer's European competitions so that if the player is not yet ready for the rigours of Ireland U-18, he can go back to Cooke's U-16 squad with a minimum of disruption.
The squad will also meet up on March 29, for a four-hour get-together in Banbridge. The side includes three of Corinthian's recent Mills Cup panel: Daniel Gribben, Davy Carson (pictured) and Conor Motyer. St Andrew's skipper Cian Speers also gets the nod along with midfield running mate Stu Loughrey. Sharp-shooter Shane O'Donoghue completes the Leinster involvement.
Speaking about the squad, coach Andy Smyth was keen to stress that those not included for this panel will still have a large part to play in the squad:
"A big part of the role of the JAG coaches is the development of young players. It is for this reason I will be keeping a squad of around 24 players together until after the England series in May.
"Those players who missed out on the Belgium trip WILL get a chance to be seen on the International stage prior to the squad being cut to the final 18 for the Europeans in Vienna.
"Development is about developing skills and techniques but it is also about developing players capable of performing in international matches and the added pressures that this brings."
Squad for Belgium: Alistair Thom (GK) (Cookstown), Daniel Gribben (GK)(Corinthian), Philip Brown (Banbridge), Scott Forbes (Banbridge), Steven Hunter (Lisnagarvey), Stuart Loughrey (Pembroke Wanderers), Richard Arneill (Lisnagarvey), Karl Lynch (Cork C of I), David Carson (Corinthian), Peter MacDonnell (Lisnagarvey), Cian Speers (Monkstown), Peter Purcell (Annadale), Shane O'Donoghue (Glenanne), Jonathan Ames (Cookstown), Conor Moyter (Corinthian), Andrew Scannell (Cork C of I), Stephen Dowds (Banbridge), Mark Crooks (Cookstown), Andrew Daunt (Cork C of I),
Coach: Andy Smyth
Manager: Chris McCandless
Asst Coach: Miles Warren
GK Coach: Paddy Grimes
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 11:03 AM
In a two-part saga, Ireland picked up a creditable draw against Germany over the past two days. Michelle Harvey gave Ireland the lead from the stroke-spot before Germany equalised ten seconds before half-time.
Driving sleet, though, caused the match's completion to be delayed until Tuesday morning. The second half remained scoreless to leave the final score 1-1.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 10:55 AM
In between, Sothern made it six with his hat-trick from corners while Gormley rounded out the magic eight from the flick spot.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 10:09 AM
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 3:34 PM
Ronan Gormley has been named skipper for the foreseeable future as part of a five-strong leadership team in a similar-style to the one employed under the previous management. Paddy Brown wore the armband in those days, supported by the likes of Mark Irwin and Jason Black.
Speaking about their absence, new Irish coach Paul Revington explains “The Irish Team will miss these influential players in the upcoming games versus France, however the short term loss will be a long term gain as John is released to conclude another level of his studies, and Stephen is allowed some time off to refresh and re-energise before a busy schedule in the summer. Tim is still recovering from an injury and I look forward to his return in the coming weeks."
Watt and Jermyn had both already been allowed leave due to upcoming exams. It means Revington's squad is pared down to 19 for the visit of "les Bleus".
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 3:02 PM
Monday, March 23, 2009
Sutton Park's junior section retained the Leinster Junior Schools A Final at Grange Road today, beating St Andrew's by a single goal in an intriguing battle.
In a high tempo game, St Andew's put Sutton Park under pressure from the start, drawing the best from goalkeeper Ben Phiefer - later to be named man of the match. But Sutton grew in stature as the game progressed and eventually worked a great goal, finished off by Evan Christian
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 10:08 PM
“These matches are an important opportunity for the players to show their potential, and also for the coaching staff to finalise our focus for 2009,” he said.
"We are evolving as a team, and the emergence in confidence and skill of some of the younger players in the group has been very exciting. This is also motivating the more experienced players to keep improving. I hope this continues into and beyond these games,” Goodheart said.
Tuesday (7pm) Ireland vs France
Wednesday (7pm) Ireland vs France
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 3:52 PM
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Pembroke repeated their All-Ireland Club Championships penalty stroke victory over Glenanne from the 2008 in a bizarre match at Serpentine Avenue to advance to the ISC final, adding yet another chapter to the intense rivalry between the teams.
The sides cannot seem to produce a regular match and while the hockey, at times, may not have matched the heights of prior encounters, the intrigue level certainly did.
Indeed, seven yellow cards - including three for the Glens in a tetchy ten minute period - tells just part of the story of an incredible spectacle.
Maurice Elliott gave the hosts the lead in the opening quarter, scoring from close range at the third phase of a penalty corner after Steven Doran rebuffed both Alan Sothern and Gordon Elliott's efforts.
Much of the rest of the half was played in between the 25s but the temperature began to rise as a few niggly tackles entered the game. Alan Browne was the first to go into the bin, starting a domino effect as the umpires added Paul Fitzpatrick and Graham Shaw to the TD's bench - all receiving yellow for dissent.
The Glens played the period with eight well and limited Pembroke to just a trio of half-chances rather than anything more substantial. Getting the players back onto the pitch also proved problematic. Browne returned as per usual but confusion reigned as Warren McCully only intended Fitzpatrick to return but Shaw followed onto the pitch at the same time.
He was subsequently returned to the bin to serve the remainder of his suspension.
Into the second half, the cards continued to be dished out. Craig Fulton and Alan Sothern both received lengthy bans for bad tackles while Johnny Goulding became the fourth Glenane player to serve time for dissent.
Paddy Conlon (pictured right) had the game's best chance to seal the result, creating an exceptional opening after mugging Graham Shaw on his own 25. His exchange with Justin Sherriff saw the former Irish international create room down the endline before squaring for Conlon who inexplicably missed an open goal. In a tough affair, Sherriff would later take a break as he was left badly cut while Michael O'Connor was another injury victim with a hefty blow to his ankle confining him to the sidelines.
The Glens let three corner chances slip by, the pick of them gloved onto the bar by David Harte before Brendan Parsons was attributed with the equaliser, though Alan Giles' stick had a large part to play in re-directing an edge of the circle past David Harte.
Extra-time brought more cagey play but Pembroke looked the more likely to get the win when David Shaw was binned but a decisive goal was not forthcoming.
Sherriff handed the early initiative to Glenanne, hitting the post with the first stroke but Graham Shaw's effort was blocked by Harte to make things all-square by round four. Round five of penalties produced no winner so sudden death ensued.
Stephen Butler, changing his usual technique of starting side on to the ball, saw his effort kept out by Harte's boot leaving Fulton to complete a truly enthralling win and keep alive hopes of retaining the title.
The 'Broke's final opponents will be made known next Saturday when Cookstown play Annadale in the second semi-final. Cookstown made it a particularly sweet couple of days for the club as they ousted Banbridge at the quarter-final stage with goals from Greg Allen and Ivan Steen. Eugene Magee recovered from a foot injury to get the Bann response.
It makes for a big day at Coolnafranky next Saturday with Cookstown hosting an ISC/IJC double-header.
On the women's side, cup specialists UCD are the only Leinster side remaining in the competition as they added Belfast Harlequins to their list of high profile victims.
Goals from Irish internationals Roisin Flinn and Lisa Jacob augmented Catriona McGlip's effort in a handsome 3-1 win. It sets up an intriguing tie with fellow students, the Ulster Elks who beat Corinthian by a single goal. The pair have never met before in this competition and avoided each other in this year's Intervarsities, too, so both go into unknown territory.
Railway Union will now look to focus on the leagues as they dropped out of the running for a cup for the second time in four days as Ballymoney's home strength proved too much, taking the honours 5-2. A first Leinster league title now becomes the major focus.
Pegasus, meanwhile, were too strong for Lurgan and won 3-0 courtesy of Suzanne Beaney's hat-trick.
Men’s Irish Senior Cup
Semi Final: Pembroke Wanderers 1 (Maurice Elliott) Glenanne 1 (Brendan Parsons) Pembroke win 5-4 on strokes
Quarter Final: Cookstown 2 (Greg Allen, Ivan Steen) Banbridge 1 (Eugene Magee)
ESB Irish Senior Cup - Quarter Finals
Lurgan 0 Pegasus 3 (Suzanne Beaney 3); Ballymoney 5 (Nikki Parke 2, Lyndsey McVicker, Bridget Cleland 2) Railway Union 2 (Kate Dillon, Jean McDonnell); Ulster Elks 1 (Caroline Smith) Corinthian 0; Belfast HQ 1 (Jenna Watt) UCD 3 (Catriona McGlip, Roisin Flinn, Lisa Jacob)
Semi Final draw: Pegasus v Ballymoney; UCD v Ulster Elks
* For some great pictures of the action taken by Adrian Boehm, click here and from Rob O'Connor, click here
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 8:21 PM
Saturday: Loreto 2 (Nikki Keegan, Cathy McKean) Glenanne 0
Loreto move to within a point of Railway to up the ante on the long-time league leaders going into the league's closing stages. They did so with a hard-won three points against Glenanne at Beaufort with Nikki Keegan and Cathy McKean on target.
Old Alex 2 (Aoife Budd, Leanne Ryan) Bray 1 (Linda O'Neill)
Alex move right back into the frame for the IHL places, especially with next week's game at UCD and a battle with Pembroke to come on the last day of the season, as they beat Bray at Milltown.
Former international Linda O'Neill was on target for the Garden County side but goals from Aoife Budd and Leanne Ryan meant the points stayed on home turf.
Sunday: Hermes 7 (Anna O'Flanagan 2, Christine Quinlan, Jenny Burke, Sinead McDonnell, Aoife Harte, Shelley Sloan) Glenanne 0
Hermes completed a great week as they added a comfortable win over Glenanne to the Jacqui Potter Cup, lashing seven past Glenanne. They built up a 4-0 half-time lead, in spite of missing the St Andrew's trio of Chloe Watkins, Niamh Atcheler and Gillian Pinder while Aoife McCarthy was also an absentee.
Anna O'Flanagan netted twice in the first half while Sinead McDonnell scored a stroke in the second half.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 8:18 PM
UCD 1 (Robbie McFarlane) Railway Union 1 (Paul O'Brien)
UCD were denied a first win of the season by Paul O'Brien's second half strike in a sprightly encounter at Belfield though the point could prove crucial with Kilkenny visiting next weekend.
Railway had the best of the opening stages with one Peter English drag-flick taken off the line by Ben Grogan's head. To the naked eye it looked to have hit his stick but the lump that emerged on his head later suggested otherwise. Railway were dangerous throughout as the game flowed from counter-attack to counter-attack with Mark English a threat
But UCD rallied well with Rob Lynch impressing, and Robbie McFarlane gave the students the lead in the 50th minute when he foudn space, spun and flicked into the roof of the net. O'Brien responded for Railway ten minutes later from a corner rebound before both sides had chances to win the game.
David Quinn saw a glit-edged opportunity blocked while Stephen O'Keefe was called on to make a comfortable, but vital, late save.
Three Rock Rovers 3 (Garry Ringwood, Peter McConnell, Patrick Shanahan) Fingal 1 (David Bane)
Fingal's IHL hopes became more dependent on Corinthian's three point penalty being upheld after they fell 3-1 to a below par Three Rock at Grange Road. Rovers led 2-0, Garry Ringwood's stroke setting them on their way.
A third followed in the second half before Fingal pulled one back. The hosts, though, were left concerned about the performance after the game with EHL concerns coming rapidly to the fore.
Monkstown 3 (Gareth Watkins 2, Brian Groves) Corinthian 3 (Andrew Sutton, Darren Kimfley, Andrew Cronje)
Trailing 3-0 at the break Corinthian produced a thrilling fightback against a tiring Monkstown to pick up a point. Gareth Watkins bagged the first and the third from corners before half-time, sandwiching Brian Groves' counter-attack goal.
Watkins would later spend time in the sin-bin for kicking the ball away while the reds switched to four up front for the second half in their efforts to get something from a key match in terms of IHL places.
It opened the game out massively with chances coming thick and fast at both ends. Andrew Sutton got the first, with a left-handed cricket stroke - applying an upright reverse to a bouncing ball from the top of the D.
Monkstown had chances to move further clear but their forwards tired due to a lack of rotation possibilities. Their bench was light on forwards due to injury and the involvement of their young charges in the All-Ireland school's. Corinthian made the most of their chances to bring the game back to 3-3
YMCA 2 (Jacob Webber, Richie Pedreschi) TRR 2 (Peter McConnell, Lucas Piccioli)
In almost a mirror image of the pairs recent draw, YM placed another dent in Three Rock's hopes of retaining the Leinster senior league with a 2-2 draw at Claremont Road. Indeed, it could have been worse for Rovers as they had to face a late corner without a recognised goalkeeper.
Wendel Armstrong was sin-binned for playing the ball outisde his area with his pads, leading to Peter Blakeney donning the protective gear for the first time since his time at Trinity. He kept out Jacob Webber's corner which would have sealed the win.
Peter McConnell's drag-flick gave the visitors the lead before Webber scored a fine individual goal to level matters. Lucas Piccioli's rebound made it 2-1 before Richie Pedreschi tied the game up once more.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 8:14 PM
Navan 0 Clontarf 3 (Rob Abbott, Luke Hayden, Dan Tracey)
Clontarf completed the division two title with three games remaining at Sportlink on Saturday, ousting a gritty Navan 3-0. There was no repeat of the double-figure win the last time the two sides met in the league as the Bulls came up against a side determined to spoil the party.
Clontarf, though, hit the front in the first half with Rob Abbott netting a penalty stroke. It came about after Gareth Borland intercepted and his long ball found Luke Hayden. He rounded the keeper but his shot hit a foot leading to the game-breaking stroke.
Hayden added the second after the break and Dan Tracey rounded out the scoring with his second in two games since joining the club. It proved the perfect day for the club and especially Gordon Lindsay who became a father for the second time on Friday.
He adds a second triumph in division two title - the previous one won with Trinity - to the division one title he won with Three Rock in 2003.
Avoca 4 (Stephen Day, Stephen Brownlow, Will Aylmer, Fergal McGuinness) Bray 3 (Jamie Crawford, Simon Cox, David Bronner)
Avoca produced a stunning comeback in the last six minutes at Newpark to throw the whole playoff situation wide open. Trailing 3-1 going into the game's latter stages, Stephen Brownlow, Will Aylmer and Fergal McGuinness all got on the scoresheet to give not just themselves but Skerries and Trinity a shot at taking second place.
Dublin University 6 (Daire Coady, Ben Hewitt, Andrew Beverland, Haldrick Sutherland 3) Naas 0
A comfortable win, based around Haldrick Sutherland's hat-trick, sees Trinity stay in with an outside chance of taking the playoff spot - something coming all the more attractive should UCD bounce ahead of Kilkenny into ninth place in division one in the coming week. Three wins over rivals Bray, Avoca and Suttonians could see them make a late season surge.
Weston 0 Skerries 2 (S O'Connor, Ali McMahon)
Not even the return of Ronan Walsh from retirement could inspire Weston to pick up a result against Skerries as the north Dubliners get right back into the playoff mix. They now lie a point off Bray with a game in hand despite once again missing first team regulars.
Neville Davin Cup:
Clontarf's double bid remains on track after they produced a stunning second half performance against Bray to set up a final with Trinity on April 19. Tying 2-2 at the interval, four second half goals saw the Bulls sail into the decider - Luke Hayden added two to his weekend tally while Rob Abbott, Derek Ledwidge, Ciaran McNamara and Ross McMullen were also on target.
On the other side of the draw, Barry Glavey's drag and Craig Moore's strike against Weston in a 2-0 win gave them a shot at lifting the Neville Davin for the first time.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 6:26 PM
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Cookstown HS 2 (Stephen Sloan, Stuart Smyth) St Andrew's College 0
An immaculate Cookstown performance at Grange Road saw the Tyrone side become the inaugural John Waring champions as they produced a complete performances to gain revenge over St Andrew's.
The Saints had dumped reigning champions Cookstown out of last October’s extended version of All-Ireland school’s competition.
But it was a different the story in the ‘super-sixes’ as the Tyrone school –inspired by Stuart Smyth and David Best – netted two first half goals and never looked back to record a handsome 2-0 victory.
The manner of victory, though, was something to behold. Town impressed in all areas, through the trickery of Ian Sloan, the direct and forceful running of player-of-the-match Stuart Smyth to the impenetrable defending of David Best, the performance had it all.
Both sides went into the tie missing big-hitters. Irish senior international David Ames missed out for Cookstown with an elbow injury sustained in the Ulster final against Banbridge two weeks ago while underage international Stephen Cole was marked absent due to an open fracture in his foot.
It meant a midfield reshuffle for Andrew’s and they never truly got to grips with the mix of aggression and guile supplied by Stephen Sloan – one of two sons of Irish legend Marty on show.
Town hit the front early on when Smyth’s audacious overhead from a long corner found Mark Wilson unmarked on the back post. His effort was blocked by Stephen West but the rebound was cleared deliberately over the end line, resulting in the game’s first penalty corner.
Ian Sloan set up his brother Stephen to slam home, via a slight deflection. Smyth was delivering a master class by the time he netted the second. His disguised reverse pass fed Mark Crooks and the flying winger beat two defenders on the end line, returned the favour to Smyth and he swept home forcefully from just six yards out.
Davy Carson - depsite suffering from illness during the week - was showing plenty of menace at the other end, latching onto Richard Sykes' long clearances out of the Andrew's defence and Alister Thom was called on a couple of times to deny the danger but as the game wore on, such chances proved more and more sporadic.
And after the break Cookstown were never truly threatened, using their tight-knit passing game to camp in the Andrew's half while Best gave a sweeping master-class to mop up any loose balls.
It means the inaugural title heads north - the 2007 All-Ireland school's champions adding yet another to the town's recent list of accolades.
* For more pictures from today's game from Inpho, click here. For Lindie Naughton's pictures from the John Waring, click here.
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 12:35 AM
Friday, March 20, 2009
Posted by Stephen Findlater at 9:42 PM