Alex score crucial win to put Muckross on the back foot

Old Alex landed their fourth win of the women’s EYHL campaign to almost certainly leave Muckross and Ards in a direct battle to decide who gets automatic relegation and who goes into the playoff.

The Milltown side recorded a 2-0 win against Muckross on Sunday with Aine Connery and Hannah McDermott doing the damage, lifting Alex up the table and putting 11 points between the bottom two and the rest.

Old Alex’s Aine Connery. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Connery hit the net in the first quarter with a reverse, beating the diving efforts of Ellie McLoughlin in the first quarter. Rachel Kelly had another effort taken off the line from a very swift attack as they held sway at the end of the first quarter.

Muckross fought back in the second period, hitting the post from a series of corners, before Alex bounced back and went close to a second before the break.

The key moment, though, came when Millie O’Donnell threaded an excellent pass into the D to McDermott whose touch just inside the circle lobbed over the diving Muckross goalkeeper.

And they stayed clear for the remainder of the tie to see them move into seventh place, above Belfast Harlequins.

Muckross are back in action in midweek when they will try and topple UCD at Belfield.

In Leinster, Naas got the big win of the weekend, their 2-0 win over Our Lady’s going a long way to potentially avoiding the bottom rung of the table.

It puts six points between ninth and tenth with games running out as Clara Chamberlayne poked home the first in a goalmouth scramble before Rachel McMullen played in Orla Brennan after a great run for number two. Our Lady’s now must get something from their Wednesday match against Glenanne in Terenure.

It was another weekend for the top three to continue their winning ways. Ailish Long scored twice in a 2-0 success for Trinity against Glenanne to remain at the head of the pack by a single point.

The students are next in action on Wednesday evening at Whitechurch Park at 8.15pm, taking on Corinthian in a vital EYHL2 game.

Monkstown are second but found it tough to shake off the challenge of Genesis at the ALD Merrion Fleet Arena. Emily Kealy put them in front in the 25th minute when she cut in from the left and struck home powerfully.

Five minutes later, Claire O’Reilly got on the end of Rachel Moore’s slap across goal but they did not move further clear and Genesis gave them a nervy finish when Aoife Orton got one back with five minutes to go, ending the tie 2-1.

Corinthian were too strong for Rathgar, Lauren McGrane scoring twice in a 6-0 victory, mathematically assuring them of a top three finish and potentially into EYHL2 again next season depending on how Muckross’s EYHL campaign pans out.

North Kildare moved within a point of Glenanne in fourth place as they got the better of Avoca 4-2 with Niamh Delaney scoring twice.

EY Hockey League
Sunday: Old Alexandra 2 (A Connery, H McDermott) Muckross 0
Wednesday: UCD v Muckross, 8.15pm, Belfield

Wednesday: Corinthian v Trinity, 8.15pm, Whitechurch Park

Leinster Division 1
Saturday: Avoca 2 (C Cody, H Lennon) North Kildare 4 (N Delaney 2, R Neary, N O’Malley); Monkstown 2 (E Kealy, C O’Reilly) Genesis 1 (A Orton); Naas 2 (C Chamberlayne, O Brennan) Our Lady’s 0; Rathgar 0 Corinthians 6 (L McGrane 2, L Motyer, C Stapleton, L Pelow, J Douglas); Trinity 2 (A Long 2) Glenanne 0
Wednesday: Our Lady’s v Glenanne, 8pm, Terenure

Irish Junior Cup (quarter-finals): Loreto 3 (J McGirr 2, R O’Keeffe) Lisnagarvey 0; Old Alexandra 0 Pegasus 0, Pegasus win shoot-out 2-0; Pembroke Wanderers 1 (A de Jong) Railway Union 2 (Z Delany, J Long); UCD 5 (S Patton, S Thomas, E Young, S Twomey, K Hennessy) Cork Harlequins 2

Munster Division 1
Saturday: Ashton 0 Cork C of I 1 (O Crowley); Catholic Institute 5 (C O’Shea, M Barrett, L Foley, K Daly, R Pratt) Bandon 0; Limerick 0 Waterford 1 (J Wagenaar)
Sunday: Cork C of I 1 (C Sexton) UCC 1 (J Clein)

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