EUROHOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIP II FINAL
IRELAND 5 UKRAINE 2
Ireland won the EuroHockey Championship II title on Saturday despite trailing at half -time.
Leadership takes many forms. Sometimes the leader inspires the others to do great things, other times they lead by example. Captain Sean Murray took the latter path. Finding his side trailing at half time he scored twice in the fourth quarter, once to equalize and the second to put Ireland in the lead. Further goals from Benjamin Walker and a Lee Cole penalty stroke sealed a 5-2 victory.
But as in the semi-final win over Scotland, Ireland were better in the second half, in this game against Ukraine too. Ireland took the lead through a penalty corner converted by Shane O’Donoghue in the 7th minute, but as the quarter wore on the opposition came more into the game. Ukraine got an equaliser on 9 minutes from Viacheslav Paziuk’s converted penalty corner to make it 1-1. Oleksandr Boiko gave Ukraine the lead with his converted penalty corner on 12 minutes and it was a lead they held on to right to the end of not only quarter one, but right up to half-time.
The third quarter saw Ireland looking more on the front foot and coming back into the game.
Sean Murray scored a field goal in the 50th minute to make it 2-2. He got his second of the match in the 51st minute to put Ireland 3-2 ahead. Ireland went further ahead in the 53rd minute through a Benjamin Walker field goal 4-2 ahead. And finally in the 56th minute Lee Cole converted a late penalty stroke to secure a 5-2 win.
In doing so Lee Cole scored his 9th goal of the tournament to secure the tournament top scorer award. David Harte was voted goalkeeper of the tournament by the coaches and manager of the participating teams. Ireland’s captain Sean Murray was voted player of the tournament and todays player of the match tournament would have gone a long way to helping him in that win. Final score Ireland 5 Czech Republic 2
IRELAND: David Harte (GK), Charlie Rowe, John McKee, Kyle Marshall, Shane O’Donoghue, Sean Murray (Capt.), Peter McKibbin, Jeremy Duncan, Benjamin Walker, Jonathan Lynch , Lee Cole. SUBS USED: Luke Witherow, Conor Empey, Sam Hyland , Ben Johnson, Nicholas Page;
UKRAINE: Bohdan Tovstolytkin (GK), Viacheslav Paziuk, Mykhailo Yasinskyi, Dmytro Luppa (Capt.), Volodomyr Kaplinskyi, Vitalii Shevchuk, Maksym Onofriiuk, Bohdan Kovalenko, Volodomyr Zhmereniuk, Andrii Koshelenko, Oleksandr Boiko, SUBS USED: Oleksandr Diachenko, Iurii Moroz, Oleksii Popov, Yurii Dzemukh, Volodomyr Kostechko, Oleksandr Yashinskyi;
Clean Sweep: L-R: Lee Cole, Top goalscorer of the Tournament, David Harte, Top Goalkeeper of the Tournament and Sean Murray, Top Player of the Tournament.
Pool C got underway on Friday to try and sort out the positions 5th to 8th in the Euro Hockey Championships II. World Ranking points and seedings for future tournaments on the line it meant that every team involved in the latter two days of this tournament had something at stake in their final games of the week.
3rd and 4th PLACE FINAL
ITALY 1 SCOTLAND 4
Pool B winners Italy ended up in a Bronze medal match against Pool B runners-up Scotland on Saturday at Sports Campus Ireland. Scotland, coached by Irishman Jonny Caren, were beaten in their semi final 4-1 by Ireland whereas the Italian had lost 4-3 in a shoot out to Ukraine after a 3-3 draw in normal time. Italy had beaten Scotland in their Pool match and took the lead on this occasion too through a Davide Arioso field goal. Italy led 1-0 at half-time. Fraser Moran equalised for Scotland in the third quarter with a 34th minute field goal and took the lead through one from Jamie Golden on 40 minutes to leave them 2-1 up. Andrew Lochrin added an open play goal on 53 minutes to leave Scotland 3-1 up . Italy having withdrawn their goalkeeper in favour of another attacker, conceded a fourth in the 57th minute when Jamie Golden’s second of the game left them 4-1 up. They soon reversed that and played out the remaining minutes of the game as normal.
Scotland win the bronze medal in the competition . For Italy is the consolation of being the potential replacement in the Olympic qualification group in January should one of the other quaIified nations decide they cannot participate for some reason or other.
CZECH REPUBLIC 7 TURKIYE 1
The Czech Republic’s bit to finish 5th in the tournament gained a lot of momentum after their win over Turkiye. Denis Tomes opened the scoring with an 8th minute goal from open play. 1-0 to the Czechs. Lukas Plochy opened his account with a field goal on 17 minutes to make it 2-0. He added another one in the 17th minute to leave the score 3-0 to the Czechs. Captain Adam Uhlir added another from open play to leave the half time score Czech Republic 4 Turkiye 0.
Lukas Plochy completed his hat-trick early in the third quarter to make it 5-0 in the 33rd minute with a goal from open play. The Turks finally got on the scoresheet from a penalty corner in the 35th minute but that was about as good as it would get for them. Adam Uhlir restored his country’s five goal margin from a penalty corner in the 36th minute. And Lukas Plochy got his fourth of the match got a field goal to leave the final score Czech Republic 7 Turkiye
Lukas Plochy’s four goal haul in this game against Turkiye put him in contention for the tournament’s top scorer competition.
PORTUGAL 6 SWITZERLAND 4
Portugal got their first win in Pool C at a crucial time to clinch 7th position in the tournament, with a 6-4 win over Switzerland at Sports Campus Ireland on Saturday. Portugal took an early lead when captain David Franco gave them a 1-0 lead converting a 12th minute penalty corner. They increased their lead on 16 minutes when Rodrigo Castro scored a field goal. Yannick Hug’s penalty corner in the 24th minute got the Swiss off the mark but the Portuguese restored their two goal advantage in the 39th minute when Rodrigo Castro scored his second goal of the day.
Boris Stomps cut their lead to one with his 44th minute penalty corner and Tiago Ventosa gave Portugal a 4-2 lead from a field goal on 47th minute. David Franco’s second penalty corner conversion of the day stretched Portugal’s lead to 5-2 in the 52nd minute. The Swiss responded with a Boris Stomps penalty corner in the 53rd minute to make it 5-3. Portugal restored their three goal lead when Aidan Fourie scored from open play with five minutes remaining. The Swiss got their fourth and final consolation goal when Lukas Hengartner converted a final minute penalty corner.
The Pool C final standings now look like this
5th are the Czech Republic with 7 points and a goal difference of plus 7
6th are Switzerland with 4 points and a goal difference of plus 1
7th are Portugal with 3 points and a goal difference of zero
8th are Turkiye with 3 points with a goal difference of minus 8