Hockey: Institute leave golden chance slip as C of I level

It proved a case of two steps forward, one step back for Catholic Institute in the Munster Women’s Division One title race as no sooner had they cracked open the race with UCC they were pegged back by Cork C of I.

Laura Foley and Kym Daly’s goals had put the Limerick club in a strong position for victory but Niamh Barber’s effort in the closing few minutes gave C of I a 2-2 draw at Garryduff.

With UCC hammering Bandon 5-0 at the Mardyke, the students moved level with Institute but with a game in hand. With four of their remaining five games against sides in the bottom half of the table, Denis Pritchard’s team are primed to retain the title.

Their chance for revenge over Insta for their recent league defeat in the Munster Senior Cup, however, was put on hold with Rosbrien deemed unplayable due to flooding yesterday.

It was not the only cancelation over the weekend. Only two of the four Irish Senior Cup ties went ahead, meaning Cork Harlequins are still waiting to find out who they play in the quarter-finals.

Pegasus did beat the weather to defeat Leinster league side Old Alex 2-0 thanks to strikes from Alex Speers and Lucy McKee.

On the men’s side, Cork C of I’s long EY Hockey League trip to Cookstown in Tyrone was called off before they left home due to frost warnings. They dropped a place as a result as Banbridge won their first game since mid-October to jump to seventh place.

At the top, Glenanne struck three times in the last four minutes to beat nearest rivals Three Rock Rovers 5-2 at St Andrew’s.

Glens player-coach Joe Brennan hailed it as “an amazing advert for the EY Hockey League” as his side prevailed in a “brilliant game between the two best counter-attacking teams in the country”.

His side has now earned 10 points in the last four minutes of league games this season, a crucial statistic in lifting them seven points clear of Rovers and in position for a first national title since 2010.

In Munster Division One, Fionn O’Leary and David Smith both scored hat tricks in Bandon’s resounding 13-0 win over Limerick, keeping them two points ahead of UCC who ground out a 1-0 win over Harlequins.


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