Monkstown, YMCA and Lisnagarvey kept their 100% records in tact with narrow victories on day two of the men’s EY Hockey League while Three Rock Rovers notched their first success of the campaign, too.
For Monkstown, they have the edge on goal difference at this early stage thanks to Jeremy Duncan’s second goal in a week as they shaded Annadale 2-1.
The sky-blues were in a real battle when James Clark cancelled out Andrew Fogarty’s opening goal at Lagan College before Duncan popped up with the winner in the fourth quarter.
YM, meanwhile, withstood a late UCD onsalught but were good value for their 2-1 success at Belfield. It was built on a fine first half performance in which Ross Henderson and Ben Campbell put them two to the good. Guy Sarratt got one back but he could not capitalise on five penalty corners on the final hooter for a would-be equaliser.
Garvey got the better of Pembroke with Andy Williamson’s heavily deflected shot the odd goal in five, 3-2, at Serpentine Avenue. Pembroke led via Nick Burns but Daniel Nelson and Troy Chambers swapped the lead by half-time. Alan Sothern equalised for 2-2 before Williamson’s crucial strike.
Glenanne let a lead slip for the second time in a week in the closing minutes as Eddie Rowe scored twice from play for Banbridge to earn a 2-2 draw.
Stephen Brownlow and Shane O’Donoghue both scored into the bottom left corner for a 2-0 lead the Glens held into the last six minutes before Rowe wrecked their hopes.
Three Rock ran out 6-1 winners over Corinthian in the Marlay derby; it was tight at 1-0 at half-time from Evan Jennings’ goal and Rovers only led 2-1 at three quarter time. But a double from Ben Johnson and further goals from Ben Walker and Sam Grace made for a handy three points.
Men’s EYHL results: Annadale 1 (J Clark) Monkstown 2 (A Fogarty, J Duncan); Corinthian 1 (D Howard) Three Rock Rovers 6 (B Johnson 2, E Jennings, R Canning, B Walker, S Grace); Glenanne 2 (S Brownlow, S O’Donoghue) Banbridge 2 (E Rowe 2); Pembroke 2 (N Burns, A Sothern) Lisnagarvey 3 (D Nelson, T Chambers, A Williamson); UCD 1 (G Sarratt) YMCA 2 (R Henderson, B Campbell)
October 10th fixtures: Lisnagarvey v Corinthian, Comber Road, 2pm; Monkstown v UCD, Merrion Fleet Arena, 2.15pm; Pembroke v Glenanne, Serpentine Avenue, 2.30pm; Banbridge v YMCA, Havelock Park, 2.45pm; Three Rock Rovers v Annadale, Grange Road, 2.45pm
Men’s EYHL – day two extended reports
Pembroke 2 (N Burns, A Sothern) Lisnagarvey 3 (D Nelson, T Chambers, A Williamson)
Andy Williamson’s deflected corner earned Lisnagarvey the points as they won a wide-open contest with Pembroke at Serpentine Avenue. His side had the majority of the clear-cut chances but they found Mark Ingram in strong form throughout as he started off the game by brilliantly keeping out Troy Chambers while Richard Sweetnam to keep out a Daniel Nelson shot with the goal beckoning.
Pembroke went in front, however, when Kirk Shimmins took a free quickly and whipped a reverse to the right post where Nick Burns turned in the chance.
Garvey levelled with a cracking goal with Cole Chambers chasing after a long ball before the ball was worked into the cavalry with Daniel Nelson’s first touch lifting the ball over a defensive stick before pummeling in his chance.
It was 2-1 at half-time when Garvey were quickest to clean up the ball off a sharp Ingram save with Troy Chambers scooping up the rebound chance. Into the second half and Ingram had to be at full stretch to keep out Mark McNellis but Pembroke – with Shimmins on his way to the sin bin – always have an ace up their sleeve in Alan Sothern and he got his customary goal when Rob McCollum picked him out at the front post from the left.
Williamson, though, found what proved to be the winner a couple of minutes later with his heavily deflected drag-flick. The game stayed very much live in the final quarter with Ingram keeping Lorimer out while Troy Chambers was narrowly wide with another couple of chances.
It left them open for a sucker-punch and it almost arrived a couple of times. From Pembroke’s only corner, James Milliken rebuffed Sothern and Harry Spain shots while McCollum’s fierce effort went over the bar.
UCD 1 (G Sarratt) YMCA 2 (R Henderson, B Campbell)
YMCA withstood five penalty corners on the final whistle to make it two wins from two in the men’s EY Hockey League and continue their excellent start to the campaign. They were good value for their 2-0 half-time lead after Ross Henderson scored at the right post in the first quarter and they were two up when Ben Campbell’s drag-flick had too much power for Stephen Dawson.
They looked the more likely to score next for the remainder of the first half and had further chances in the third quarter before UCD fought back with Guy Sarratt flicking a corner high into the net past Cameron Larkin, stepping in at the start of this season for the injured Jakim Bernsden.
It kept he game alive and when UCD won a corner on the whistle, it gave them a chance of nicking a point for the second week running but Larkin’s defensive unit – with Grant Glutz to the fore – secured the three points.
“To keep out five corners on the hooter with Guy Sarratt flicking, to keep it at 2-1, the guys showed a lot of effort,” said YM coach Jason Klinkradt.
“The guys pride them on their hard work in defence before attack. It was Grant’s turn this week. I am maybe a little disappointed we didn’t put the game to rest a little earlier with the chances that came along but that chances are coming is the important thing.
“We kept everyone over the summer. It’s a tight-knit group and that’s important in these pandemic times to keep everyone going. Very early days, though.”
His counterpart Michael Styles was disappointed with how his side played, saying: “YM were very good, hungry and played a high tempo and we didn’t match them. At 2-0, we got a kick and started playing and took a few risks.
“We need to start games better and perform throughout and not wait for a kick-start. At 2-1, our performance improved. Regardless of the corners at the end, we have to look at the whole game.”
Annadale 1 (J Clark) Monkstown 2 (A Fogarty, J Duncan)
Annadale came close to grabbing a point at Lagan College as they almost gave ambitious Monkstown a shock but Jeremy Duncan’s late goal ultimately proved decisive for the Dubliners.
Andrew Fogarty put Town in front in the first half when he knocked in a rebound but Dale fought back strongly, particularly in the third quarter, with James Clark hitting the crossbar while Adam McAllister shone once again. They got their reward following a corner melee which saw Dave Fitzgerald saved twice before the ball was switched back to injector Clark who got down low to push home.
The sky-blues, however, responded in kind and got their winner when they unpicked a packed circle to find Duncan alone and able to slot home his second goal in two games since joining the club.
Glenanne 2 (S Brownlow, S O’Donoghue) Banbridge 2 (E Rowe 2)
Eddie Rowe’s double in the last six minutes earned Banbridge a share of the spoils as Glenanne were left to rue a second draw of the campaign from a winning position in the last ten minutes.
Banbridge came within inches of a first goal in the first minute when Josh Moffett’s batted shot hit the post but they fell behind the seventh minute when Richard Couse won a corner. Stephen Brownlow produced a low push down the stick side to put the St Andrew’s hosts in front.
The next Glens corner was charged down a minute later while Luke Roleston saved well from Gary Shaw. They continued to be on top in the second quarter and doubled their lead from their third corner, Shane O’Donoghue finding the same spot with his drag-flick.
Bann, though, started to find plenty of joy in their press and ran up five corners in the second quarter with Iain Walker keeping out Eugene Magee, Owen Magee and Philip Brown.
In the second half, Glenanne looked the more likely to extend their lead with Jason Rogan twice drawing strong saves from Roleston. On the the three quarter time hooter, Bann had a deflected effort chalked off for interference of the first runner, leaving it 2-0.
But the pressure was incessant in the final quarter with Bann penning Glenanne back throughout. Rowe got the first goal back with a brilliant catch from Walker’s high booted clearance, controlling and then volleying back with interest with six minutes to go.
And the teenager repeated the trick two minutes later with a near post touch from a ball in from the left to complete the comeback. Brownlow almost nicked the full points in the dying seconds but his reverse under pressure was bundled wide and the draw remained.
Corinthian 1 (D Howard) Three Rock Rovers 6 (B Johnson 2, E Jennings, R Canning, B Walker, S Grace)
Three Rock Rovers raced clear of their Dublin 16 rivals at Whitechurch Park in the final quarter after an initially tight contest.
Following a minute’s silence for former Irish international RD Mellon, Rovers had the better of the early exchanges with Charlie Henderson twice keeping out Peter Blakeney while Conor Quinn did well at the far end to block a couple of corners on the quarter-time whistle.
The visitors went in front on the half hour when Jody Hosking’s long ball from a free out found its way to Ben Walker behind the last defender and he slipped to Evan Jennings. The young striker slipped the ball home on his reverse.
Ross Canning’s sharp finish made it 2-0 early in the second half as Harry Morris’s miscued shot popped up nicely and he slashed in with a one-handed effort. Davy Howard got one back from a corner in the 40th minute to keep the contest alive into the final quarter.
But Rovers’ connections came together to devastating effect. They scored direct from the restart with Walker getting on the end of the move, whipping home a reverse from the top of the circle. Their press put Corinthian in a muddle soon after with possession robbed on the 23, leading to Ben Johnson firing home another backhand shot.
The Waterford man hit the post from a corner before the set-piece was reset; at the second time of asking, his heavily deflected drag sent Henderson the wrong way and nestled in the backboard. Sam Grace finished off the scoring with his first goal for the club from play, Daragh Walsh’s slipped pass allowing him to trap and bang.
“It must be a while!” Grace said when asked about a rare field-goal. “Right place, right time I guess – just had an idea where the goal was and pulled on it. I was keeping an eye on what the forwards were doing during the week.”
He feels his side are in a good place now for the season ahead with Walsh a big plus: “We knew Corinthians would be hard to break down and they have a fierce fight in them. We did think when we got the third that we would kick on. Daragh does make a big difference and adds a serious amount of quality. It’s great to have him back.”