Catholic Institute face a step up in class away to Monkstown

Catholic Institute face the biggest test to their impressive early-season credentials with tomorrow’s trip to Monkstown.

Catholic Institute face a step up in class away to Monkstown

Catholic Institute face the biggest test to their impressive early-season credentials with tomorrow’s trip to Monkstown.

The Limerick side has swept aside all four opponents in the Munster League and have two wins from two in the newly introduced EYHL Division 2.

Monkstown, though, will be a step up in class. They lead the five-team group with three wins while they have hit over 30 goals in all competitions.

The key battle will certainly be between World Cup stars Roisin Upton and Chloe Watkins, both of whom returned to their home clubs in the summer.

For both clubs, the competition is a real aim for this season.

The target for Insta is to pin down a top-two spot from the five-team Pool B of EYHL2 which would keep them in the mix for a shot at promotion to the national division.

Upton missed last week’s 4-0 win at Bandon but should return tomorrow while there may also be room for another comeback kid, Clodagh Moloney, back in Ireland following the conclusion of her US season at the University of Massachusetts.

In Pool A, UCC need a positive result from their trip to Trinity to stay in touch in with current pace-setters Corinthian and Queens.

In the top national tier, Cork Harlequins are on the road to UCD looking to build on their run of form.

Quins are the only side to have beaten the students at Belfield since 2016 and if they can continue the direct approach from Michelle Barry and Olivia Roycroft, their efforts can bear fruit again.

UCD are not quite the force of the last term as they look to bed in several new faces to replace internationals like Deirdre Duke and Katie Mullan.

But Lena Tice has returned to Ireland after short but successful stints in both the New Zealand and Australia Hockey Leagues.

On the men’s side, Cork C of I’s staccato season sees them contest the Irish Senior Cup third round against UCD.

A host of cancellations, mostly due to World Cup preparation, have left C of I with just five games played in the league, a stark contrast to their opponents who have double that pitch-time.

Ashton look to continue their productive campaign when they host Rathgar in the Irish Hockey Trophy while Catholic Institute head to NICS.

Locally, Bandon moved into second place in Munster Division One in midweek with a big 4-1 win over UCC.

David Smith and Clinton Sweetnam settled them with a pair of early goals before Rob Sweetnam – an emerging star along with Ethan Hamilton – stretched out the lead to three at half-time.

Colin Kingston netted against his former club from a corner before Jack Marlborough got the UCC consolation with six minutes left.

For the champion students, a fourth defeat from five outings leaves them in last place.

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