Women’s Leinster Division One
Old Alexandra 1 (E Hinkson) Hermes 0
Erika Hinkson game midway through the first half proved enough for Old Alex to frustrate Hermes in Milltown and see them off to a flying start to the season and life under Didi Cole. She got a slight touch to Shirley McCay’s reverse-stick cross, looping the ball over a diving Emma Gray.
From there, both sides had their moments but Hermes had the better of the tie but could not find the cutting edge from play to get back on terms. Notably, Alex defended a series of corners well with Pam Smithwick keeping out a pair of Audrey O’Flynn flicks while Sarah Canning took another off the post to see out what could be a big win come the IHL rankings later this term.
Loreto 5 (N Small 2, S McGirr, A Meeke, C Vincent) Glenanne 1 (P Fitzpatrick)
Trevor Dagg said he was quite pleased with the rhythm and structure his Loreto side showed in their opening women’s division one tie, their new look side seeing off a youthful Glenanne. Loreto were 2-0 up in the first quarter, courtesy of goals from Sinead McGirr from a corner and a strong finish by Ali Meeke after good approach work from Niamh Small.
Glenanne worked hard to gain some momentum and reduced the deficit from a well-worked move from a corner, finished off by Paula Fitzpatrick before half time. In the second half, Loreto took control again and player of the match Niamh Small scored two good goals from play either side of a well-finished goal by Ciara Vincent whose pace was a handful for the Glens throughout.
Pembroke 3 (E Horan, J Collins, S Carey) Trinity 0
Pembroke got their season up and running with a solid three-goal win over Trinity with three corner goals doing the damage. Eanna Horan, on debut against her former club, got the first when her initial straight strike bounced back to her and she followed up well in the tenth minute.
Just before the break, Jilly Collins rebounded too at corner time, this time after a deflection move was blocked in the first phase. Sharon Carey completed the win early in the second half from the injector’s spot, once again from the second phase.
For Trinity’s part, their best chance fell to Sophie Marshall but, otherwise, they found openings limited despite the endeavour of Avril Dooley-O’Carroll. In opposition, Caroline Murphy was in strong form, keeping tabs on Anna May Whelan, as were Eanna Horan and Sorcha Clarke.
Railway Union 5 (A Speers 2, Z Delany, K Dillon, R Clifford) North Kildare 0
Alex Speers’ double helped Railway Union to a fine second half performance that saw Railway Union pull clear in the final reckoning in Nasir Munir’s first game in charge. New arrival Angharad Griffiths was twice denied in the early phases by Ali Bell as North Kildare initially proved a tough nut to crack but Railway eventually broke through from a flowing move, finished off by Zara Delany.
The second goal didn’t arrive until after the break when Delany drew another pair of saves from Bell before Speers eventually mopped up at the third attempt. Kate Dillon extended the lead to three off the back of a Delany/Speers combination. Speers and Ruth Clifford then completed the win.
Corinthian 1 (S Quill) UCD 8 (K Mullan 2, E Carey 2, D Duke 2, E Beatty, K Collins-Smyth, D Duke)
A comprehensive win for UCD showed their intent with debutant Elaine Carey netting twice while the returning Deirdre Duke was also on the mark on her return from the US to see the reigning champions sitting atop the embryonic table on goal difference in their bid to defend the title.