Former Irish international Karen Bateman stepped out of retirement after 15 months to help Quins, but it mattered little as they were routed 4-0 by the classy Belfield students, who finally found their range in the final half-hour after a goal-less first half.
Chloe Watkins was their inspiration, forcing home the first from close range before Nicola Gray buried a trademark short corner bullet.
Watkins then produced an outrageous behind-the-back pass to allow Anna O’Flanagan to reverse home the third, before Deirdre Duke put a gloss on the scoreline late on. UCD must plunder Munster again in round two, as they’ll face Catholic Institute in Limerick on November 12.
Munster’s other round one representative, UCC, came a cropper in Armagh as former Irish Examiner Junior Sports Star Amy Stewart scored in the hosts’ 2-0 win.
Stewart has endured 18 miserable months on the sidelines with a chronic ankle problem, but the youngest ever Irish international broke the deadlock against the Cork students before Kate Snyder added a second.
Pegasus were the biggest winners of the day, Vanessa Surgeoner hitting four in their 7-0 dismissal of Three Rock Ladies, while the biggest shock came at Queens University as the hosts’ Hannah McMillan rocketed in a hat-trick in their stunning 4-0dismissal of Randalstown.
Patrick Shanahan returned to his old stomping ground in Bandon and notched the goal of the day as UCD romped to an impressive 5-1 success. Two early drag-flicks from Ireland senior Shane O’Donoghue had them in control before Melvin Beamish got hold of a snapshot reverse effort to put under-strength Bandon back in it.
Rob Anderson got a super deft touch to a crash ball for a 3-1 half-time lead, before Shanahan rounded Ian Hosford and finished from a tight angle. David Watkins put the final touch to a team goal late on. The students will be back on home turf Belfield in round two where they will face a far tougher test from Glenanne.
Greg Thompson’s hat-trick helped competition favourites Lisnagarvey see off UCC 4-0, though a stubborn effort from the Cork students will have given them confidence for next weekend’s Munster league showdown with Bandon. ‘Garvey, for their part, are Munster-bound in round two as they travel to Cork Church of Ireland.
Annadale were the day’s big winners as they stunned Leinster powerhouses YMCA 4-1, though they won’t be relishing the prospect of a trip to play Cork Harlequins on the Farmers Cross sand in round two.
Most of the round one ties were similarly one-sided — Railway Union’s 11-2 dismissal of last season’s Irish Hockey Trophy winners South Antrim chief among them — with the exception of Belfast Harlequins’ epic 5-4 win over Kilkeel, courtesy of a Christopher Lemon golden goal in extra-time.
Domestically, UL’s excellent start to the Munster women’s season continued, as goalkeeper Elaine O’Flynn pulled off a string of superb saves before Rachelle Nyhan crashed home a late equaliser in their 1-1 draw away to Cork C of I.
Irish Senior Cup Rd 2 draw (November 12)
Men: UCD v Glenanne; Cork C of I v Lisnagarvey; Cookstown v Banbridge; Cork Harlequins v Annadale; Monkstown v Pembroke Wanderers; Railway Union v Three Rock Rovers; Instonians v Mossley; Belfast Harlequins v NICS; Women: Corinthian v Ards/Trinity; Belfast Harlequins v Loreto; Railway Union v Lurgan; Old Alex v Hermes; Catholic Institute v UCD; Armagh v Glenanne; Queens University v Portadown; Ballymoney v Pegasus.