Double delight for UCD as men end drought

UCD completed a rare Intervarsity double as their men ended over a decade waiting for the title after a series of final appearances as elite scholar Shane O’Donoghue netted twice in a 4-0 final win over UCC.

His goals gave the Dubliners a 2-0 half-time lead which Sam O’Leary and Shane Nolan added to, completing a comfortable victory in Galway to claim the Mauritius Cup.

They did with a perfect record, making it through a tough day two with a pair of 2-1 wins over UCC and Queens to top their pool. They edged past reigning champions DCU 1-0 in the semi-final before producing their strongest performance in a re-match against UCC who had ended UU’s run in the competition.

It added to their women’s success earlier in the day, retaining the Chilean Plate with plenty to space ahead of Queens University who were rocked early on by injury to star player Hannah McMillan.

The Belfield side netted once in each half with Jeamie Deacon slapping home a penalty corner and Caroline Hill getting the insurance goal in the second period. They reached the final with the odd goal in five against UU, disarming the Jordanstown side despite goals from Henny Tunsch and Becky Weir.

Trinty picked up the the Chilean Plates with victory over NUIG while CIT took the Mauritius Plate.

Elsewhere, Ireland’s men and women both moved up a place in the latest world rankings which were released following completion of the Pan-American Games in Mexico, the last of five continental tournaments to be played this year.

The men are up to 17th, leap-frogging France following their best ever fifth place finish in Europe. The women moved into 14th despite a disappointing sixth place in their Euro campaign as they profited from Azerbaijan’s relegation from the top tier in the continent.

It could have a knock-on effect in theoretically offering Ireland a more welcoming Olympic qualifier in the spring. For the women, though, a serious shark has been thrown into the waters after reigning world champions lost 4-2 to the USA last weekend at those Pan-Am Games and must now contest the qualifiers and could face Ireland.

Intervarsity hockey results
Mauritius Cup final: UCD 4 (S O’Donoghue 2, S Nolan, S O’Leary) UCC 0
Mauritius Plate final: Trinity 3 CIT 4
Chilean Cup final: UCD 2 (J Deacon, C Hill) Queens 0
Chilean Plate final: Trinity 1 NUIG 0

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