Trinity won the big battles but ultimately lost the Colours war on Monday despite recording rare wins in both the men’s and women’s first team showdowns against UCD.
For the men, their 3-1 success ended a decade’s wait for victory in this particular marquee tie as they tore into game, scoring early with a quick counter-attack down the left off the back of Adam Colton’s strong tackle.
He fed Stephen Ludgate down the line who fired a bouncing cross into the path of Tom Gibbs to finish off first time past a diving Conor Quinn. It remained 1-0 until half-time with both sides having corners but neither able to take advantage.
Conor Stephens doubled up soon after the break when Matthew Lewis cut out a ball between centre and left back. He knocked it toward the endline with the Belfield defence believing it to be going dead but he just about kept it in play for Jonathan Lewis who reacted quick enough to win a corner.
At the second attempt, Aran Rooney dragged to the post where Stephen slapped it in first time. Shane Madeley pulled one back from a corner rebound with seven minutes left after Robbie Clarke charged down his initial strike and UCD went all guns blazing for a draw.
But, having pulled their goalkeeper for an extra outfielder, Jonathan Lewis stole the ball inside his own half, made it all the way to endline, held the ball in the corner before squaring for Steven Nolan who was unmarked to finish into an empty net.
On the women’s side, Sarah Quill scored the only goal for Trinity as they beat UCD 1-0, making for a very rare double of first team wins since the turn of the century.
It came from a corner in a tie that Trinity had the better of although Elaine Carey and Anna Roopnarinesingh both went close on the break. They were denied by good saves from Harriet Walsh, the pick of them from Sarah Robinson from the top. Cliodhna McCullough and Anna May Whelan were the key players for Trinity in midfield.
In terms of the overall Colours crown, though, the damage had been done earlier in the day. On the women’s side, UCD won all the other ties, claiming the 2nds game 3-2, 3rds 4-0, 4ths 6-1 and 5ths 7-1.
With the men’s 3rds game being won 2-1 by the UCD, too, that gave them the five points they needed to carry the day before the big games got under way.
Trinity did also win the men’s seconds game with some high quality help. Harry Spain scored a hat trick while fellow Pembroke man Cillian Hynes netted twice in a 5-3 success.