Duncan double opens up EYHL playoff race

Men’s Leinster Division 1A’s race for the three tickets to EYHL playoffs took a significant turn last night with UCD recording a 4-1 win over YMCA on a bitterly cold night in Milltown.

A pacy UCD attack saw them open up a 2-0 lead within the first five minutes to leave YMCA reeling and they never recovered in spite of a spate of penalty corners.

UCD's Jeremy Duncan scored twice. Pic: Adrian Boehm

UCD’s Jeremy Duncan scored twice. Pic: Adrian Boehm

A blistering 50 metre run from Jazze Henry straight from the tip off opened the YM defence, teeing up Andrew Ramsey to open the scoring. Jeremy Duncan followed up with a neat finish soon after.

YM fought back strongly and got themselves with a pair of corners leading to an Eric Prehn goal. But they were caught on the counter with David Nolan finishing off via a deflection having seen his initial effort coming back off the post.

The Y showed renewed vigour in the second half and bossed most of the possession with UCD’s threat coming via counter attacks. The ever-threatening Ben Campbell was the go-to man and linked up well with his lively forward line to create some dangerous chances.

But UCD caught YMCA with a sucker punch midway through the half to seal the result with an attack down the left flank was worked to the top of the circle where Duncan struck hard to the bottom corner.

YMCA will rue their missed corners which reached double figures in number but UCD have goalkeeper Stephen Dawson to thank with a number of top class saves. The UCD postmen also picked off a couple each from the line to keep the YM attack at bay.

The result lifts UCD to four points, level with YM at the midway stage of the mini-league, with Corinthian leading on 10 points and Clontarf second on eight points.

As such, it sets up a huge battle at Belfield on Saturday when UCD face YM once again with the latter looking to find their mojo once again. They have won just once in their last six games and need to find the form that saw them blitz the first of the season.

Corinthian play Clontarf for the second time on Saturday in their second meeting in this phase of the league after two high-scoring draws earlier in the campaign.

In Division 1B, goals from Declan Brady and Jim Dunne saw Fingal edge out Weston 2-1 in midweek. They meet again on Saturday while Dublin University host Rathgar in the other tie.

Men’s Leinster Division 1A
YMCA 1 (E Prehn) UCD 4 (J Duncan 2, A Ramsay, D Nolan)
Saturday: Corinthian v Clontarf, 12.45pm, Whitechurch Park; UCD v YMCA, 12.50pm, Belfield

Division 1B
Fingal 2 (D Brady, J Dunne) Weston 1
Saturday: Dublin Univesity v Rathgar, 12pm, Santry Avenue; Weston v Fingal, 1.30pm, Griffeen Valley Park

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