UCD top as five sides remain unbeaten in women’s EYHL

Women’s EY Hockey League
UCD moved to the top of the women’s EY Hockey League as they continued to bounce back from their opening day defeat with a confident 3-1 win over student rivals Trinity.

It meant Miles Warren’s side moved up four places in the table as Ards, Cork Harlequins, Pegasus and Railway union all drew. Indeed, the table is extremely close-knit with no 100% records and first and ninth place covered by just three points with five teams still unbeaten.

Ards 1 (A Benson) Cork Harlequins 1 (R Barry)
Both Ards and Cork Harlequins continued their unbeaten starts to the women’s EY Hockey League season, moving onto five points each after three rounds of matches.

Both the goals came in the closing quarter after a very even first three quarters. Naomi McKnight made a key save for the home side while Faye Kidd’s diving effort and Chloe Brown’s shot from a tight angle were the pick of the chances in the first half.

Brown also had a drag taken off the line at the post before Amy Benson opened the scoring a minute into the final quarter, nipping in front of Emma Buckley to get to a crash ball and touch home.

The equaliser, though, came 11 minutes later when Rebecca Barry reacted quickest to fire in a great reverse-stick shot after an initial drag-flick was charged down. Ards did have a late chance to win it from a corner but Brown saw another follow-up shot taken off the line.

Trinity (S Campbell) 1 UCD 3 (E Russell, K Mullan, D Duke)
UCD moved top of the women’s EYHL with a confident win over student rivals Trinity, continuing their bounce-back from their opening day defeat to Cork Harlequins. Emma Russell gave them the perfect start, netting from a baseline attack in the sixth minute.

Katie Mullan had a couple of near misses as the Belfield side made most of the play against the newly promoted outfit but Carolyn Crampton made some strong saves while Louise McCollum charged down a corner. Ailish Long and Niamh Sweeney, meanwhile, gave Trinity a threat from their attacks.

Deirdre Duke was credited with the second goal amid a goal-mouth melee after a few half-hit shots and saves at close-quarters, moving UCD 2-0 up. Sally Campbell got one back for Trinity in the closing seven minutes as she ran along the baseline and slotted in the corner from a tight angle.

But Mullan made the game safe when Duke won a corner, dragging into the bottom corner for 3-1.

Hermes-Monkstown 0 Pembroke Wanderers 4 (A Naughton; K Marshall. O Macken. L Noble)
Pembroke shook off the shackles to land their first win of the season, leaving Hermes-Monkstown still to get off the mark after three games. Former Hermes player Aisling Naughton broke the deadlock after six minutes before Katie Jane Marshall doubled the lead at half-time.

Orla Macken and Laura Noble added final quarter goals to stretched out the lead to four to lift the Dublin 4 side up a couple of places in the table.

Pegasus 0 Railway Union 0
Pegasus and Railway Union were another pair of sides to extend their unbeaten run to three games – making it five clubs in total yet to be defeated – as they shared a goalless draw at Queen’s.

Pegs’ captain Alex Speers – against her former club – had the best chance of the first half denied by Grace O’Flanagan while the same match-up served up the key chance in the 58th minute, the former’s deflection drawing a brilliant reaction save. Taite Doherty’s final shot was also kept out by O’Flanagan to ensure the scoreless draw.

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