Saturday, February 27, 2010

Rovers and Glens perform huge comebacks

Men's Irish Senior Cup, quarter-finals:
Two-nil proved a perilous lead this afternoon in the Irish Senior Cup quarter-finals as both Lisnagarvey and Corinthian built such a lead only to be miss out on a final four place at the hands of Three Rock and Glenanne respectively.

They will be joined there by Monkstown and Annadale who similarly tight wins over Kilkeel and Banbridge, both by just a single goal.

Glenanne left their comeback the latest as they needed a Gary Shaw double inside the last three minutes to finally secure their 4-2 win over the reds, having looked dead and buried with 19 minutes to go. Shaw continued his superb run of late, cracking home a trio of superb goals as he raised his side at St Mark's and keep hopes of a third Irish Senior title and a route into the EHL.

Lucas Piccioli goals on 18 and 49 minutes had Corinthian in command but the Glens' immense fighting spirit meant the tie was scarcely up and they were level within five minutes, Shaw and Mick McGuinness netting.

And, with extra-time looming, Graham Shaw laid on the most sublime of through balls to Gary Shaw and his finish was picture-perfect to hand Glenanne the lead for the first time with just two minutes left on the watch. He added the fourth for good measure in the final seconds to confirm their semi-final berth.

Rovers' comeback was complete before the first half was even up as they responded to a nightmare first 20 minutes with real venom. 'Garvey dominated the early proceedings at Grange Road, Timmy Cockram in fine form and earning a corner inside 45 seconds. He was to find a regular foe in Stephen West, though, who blocked all five of his corner drags while generally enjoying a brilliant day between the posts.

He was unlucky, though, to concede in the sixth minute as Cockram's gentle flick (right) first got caught in his pads and, while searching to find the ball, it bizarrely dropped out and rolled over the line. Mark Robinson volleyed home a brilliant rebound first time to make it 2-0 in the 18th minute as the Ulster side threatened to run riot, Johnny Gray a driving presence down the left flank.

But Rovers were galvanised by Ross Canning's opportunism as he dove in ahead of a couple of defenders to touch home Michael Maguire's smashed free from just outside the 25. Up to that point, Rovers were listless but with a lifeline offered, they duly grabbed hold.

Pierre de Voux ran around his backhand to thump home a forehand shot to finish off a long-corner move  before Sven Galjaardt - who had already served notice of his corner prowess, forcing an amazing save from David Williamson - winged in a drag-flick to make it 3-2 in the 33rd minute.

No goals followed but plenty of drama as the sides took it turns to miss easy chances. Cockram reversed wide from six yards with the Rovers' defence scattered while de Voux - playing his best hockey in a Rovers' jersey - laid up an excellent chance only for Canning to miss a touch from two yards.

David Storey sat out the last five minutes to raise the tension further but the hosts had the chances to kill the game. Peter McConnell pushed a corner switch inches wide from eight metres, Paddy Shanahan also went close but they held on squeak into the semi-finals.

Monkstown made it three Leinster sides into the semi-final, reaching this stage for the second time in three years when they scored the odd goal in nine to edge out Kilkeel.

They had to rely on a Stephen Cole reverse-stick save off the line in the game's last play, though, as they almost let a 5-2 lead be turned into an extra-time dog-fight. Kilkeel had led at 1-0 and 2-1 but, first, Ian Allen and then Runar O'Moore equalised before a Gareth Watkins' penalty stroke and a brilliant deflection from the same player to Brian Groves' ball had the Town cruising.

Andrew Ward added the fifth before Monkstown eased off the gas and conceded twice, setting up a grandstand finish. And they were almost caught but for the covering Cole to save the sky-blue blushes.

Annadale, meanwhile, fly the lone northern flag after Ian Hamilton's double disposed of Banbridge. He struck twice to put 'Dale in a strong position before Dermy Reay responded in the second half.

Irish Senior Cup, quarter-final results:
Three Rock Rovers 3 (Ross Canning, Pierre de Voux, Sven Galjaardt) Lisnagarvey 2 (Timmy Cockram, Mark Robinson); Glenanne 4 (Gary Shaw 3, Mick McGuinness) Corinthian 2 (Lucas Piccioli 2); Banbridge 1 (Dermy Reay) Annadale 2 (Ian Hamilton 2); Monkstown 5 (Gareth Watkins 2, Ian Allen, Runar O'Moore, Andrew Ward) Kilkeel 4 (William Annett, Craig Cunningham 2, Gareth Russell)

* For more of Adrian Boehm's photos from Three Rock Rovers vs Lisnagarvey, click here


Anonymous said...

credit to rovers must be given, hasn't always gone for them this year but they have kept working hard and are being rewarded for their hard work in ISC. excellent to make it to the semi finals of a big cup with 11 players lost from last years squad

Anonymous said...

Coley saved monkstown blushes today with an amazing take off the line with seconds remaining. True to form Monkstown were 5-2 up with bout 15 minutes left to play and managed to have lead cut to 5-4. Kilkeel should have equalised in the dying seconds but Cole came from nowhere and cool as a breeze cleared koff the line to save the day!!!!

Anonymous said...

It makes a big difference when a few players put a lot of effort into it. It's almost typically Rovers this year, a poor start and a happy ending. Not sure if it's the players or the coaching, but without the players there is no happy ending.

Anonymous said...

Have to say, Corinthians deserved their 2-0 lead but the Glens came back, as only they can, to dominate the majority of the second half & thoroughly deserved their win. Corinthians need to know how to manage, defend, maintain & extend a dominant lead, if they're going to progress to being a consistently top side. They're definitely getting there though.

Both teams know how to score against each though, so it'll be some game in the league in a few weeks.

Anonymous said...

some key moments in the game that glens survived particularly in last 10 minutes . Rode their luck with a high ball decision and then went on to finish well

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve,
As the ulster hockey blog is down.
Controversy reigns here. Cookstown were 2-1 down and had a player in the sin-bin.They equalised from open play,then the umpires discovered that Cookstown had 11 men on the pitch and that the sin-binned player was involved in the goal.The ump who had sent the player off stated that he had never waved him back on- however the player and the rest of the team are adamant that he was waved back into play.He was subsequently sent of again as the umpires took an age to decide where do they go from here. They allowed the goal to stand and Cookstown won the game 3-2. Instonians have lodged a protest. The umpires are 2 of the most experienced umpires in Ulster but overall this game ended in a farce with Instonians chairman having a lengthly discussion with umps after the game.

Anonymous said...

If anyone is interested in watching the hockey world cup/ Zing TV now have their schedule up. They are showing every match!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Monkstown had a shakey start on saturday but defo deserved the win. Coley and Watkins palyed quality. It's only a matter of time until they are in the ireland squad

Anonymous said...

Cookstown V Instonians question. The smae thing happened last year in a game V Glenanne and Monkstown where a player was binned. Monkstown made a substitution but the subbed player nver came off the pitch leaving them with 11. The rule the umpires applied ws that the additional player was removed from the pitch and also the captain of the offending team. There was nothing inthe rules that the Umpires could use to disallow the goal that was scored. Apparently this was the correct course of action. The big question is that how come all umpires are not aware of what to do in such a situation.