The changing of the guard continues at the top table of the women’s game as Pembroke and Catholic Institute will contest the women’s Irish Senior Cup final in late April having led the way in the EYHL.
The latter will be looking to win the title for the first time while Pembroke have not won the cup since 1975.
Insta left it late on Sunday afternoon in Rosbrien to turn things around as UCD – winners of three of the last four editions of the cup – looked set to be the first club to win in Limerick this season thanks to a Hannah McLoughlin penalty corner strike.
But two goals from Naomi Carroll in the last 10 minutes saw Institute turn the game on its head for a 2-1 success in front of a big home crowd. It will be their third final appearance, their most recent coming in 1984.
UCD came out of the traps quicker and scored a corner in the seventh minute through McLoughlin and they kept up an intense level of pressure through the second quarter but the hosts hung tough.
The Limerick side found their feet in Q3 and ramped up their game significantly in the closing stages. A super ball from Ciara Moloney picked out Carroll to deflect into the top corner and they had a string of good chances before taking the vital one with two minutes left, a passing movement which Carroll took to her left and cracked in on her reverse.
Pembroke, meanwhile, showed no hangover from their EYHL celebrations on Saturday as they beat Pegasus 2-0 at Serpentine Avenue with Orla Macken and Gillian Pinder’s penalty stroke in the second half making the difference.
On the men’s side, reigning champions Lisnagarvey were pushed to the absolute limit at the unfamiliar Beaufort surrounds as they beat Glenanne in an epic shoot-out.
Jonny Lynch’s goal put Garvey in control but Richard Couse levelled in the fourth quarter to send the game to the shoot-out which went all the way to 8-7 before Daniel Nelson slotted the winner.
Monkstown will be Garvey’s opponent. They looked to be coasting when Jeremy Duncan scored twice in the first half, adding to one from Lee Cole to make it 3-0 against Cookstown but the Co Tyrone side – who ply their trade in the Ulster Premier Division – grabbed goals from Calum Anderson and Michael Kerr to give the Dubliners a real fright.
The two finals will take place on April 30 in Belfield.
Irish Senior Cup semi-finals: Glenanne 1 (R Couse) Lisnagarvey 1 (J Lynch), Lisnagarvey win shoot-out 8-7; Monkstown 3 (J Duncan 2, L Cole) Cookstown 2 (C Anderson, M Kerr)
Irish Senior Cup semi-finals: Catholic Institute 2 (N Carroll 2) UCD 1 (H McLoughlin); Pembroke 2 (O Macken, G Pinder) Pegasus 0