High School secured their place in the Leinster Schoolgirl’s Senior Cup semi-final with their fourth win in three weeks, quickly making their way through three rounds of the competition at the expense of Our Lady’s Grove, Mount Sackville and, most recently, King’s Hospital.
They showed their Premier class to get the better of Senior One side Our Lady’s Grove in round one before facing an intense battle with Mount Sackville, normal time ending 0-0 while no further goals accrued in extra time.
But a brilliant performance in goal by Lia McCann saw High School win the penalty one-on-one shoot-out 4-1 and advance to the final eight.
There, they met King’s Hospital – victors over St Raphaela’s in round two – in Palmerstown, a tie in which both teams started strong with both sides creating many opportunities. The visitors were the ones to eventually break the deadlock when Jenny Long whipped in a cracking shot into the backboard.
And her side looked more likely to snatch a second but Kings Hospital continued fighting and defending well to stay in the game until a last second goal helped High School to victory on a 2-0 scoreline.
Meanwhile, St Andrew’s were among the major contenders to fall in the last week in a truly remarkable tie with Wesley College. It went to the 14th round of penalty one-on-ones, one of the innovations brought into the competition this term, using the format from the European an Irish Hockey Leagues.
Normal time had ended 2-2 after Lauren McGrane has initially handed Wesley the lead only for Andrew’s to bounce back and lead at 2-1. Anna May Whelan levelled matters to force extra-time and subsequently penalties.
Aisling Naughton notched a third hat-trick of the season for Mount Anville to see them through to a quarter-final date with Wesley, meaning another of the league semi-finalists will fall by the wayside. Naughton’s treble came in a 4-0 success over Holy Child, Killiney with Julia O’Connell also on the mark.
Leinster Senior Schoolgirls Cup, quarter-final draw: Teresians v Loreto Dalkey/Loreto Beaufort; Rathdown v Muckross/Alexandra College; Kings Hospital 0 High School 2; Mount Anville v Wesley College – to be played by February 4