Glenanne and Three Rock lead the way in men’s EY Hockey League

Men’s EY Hockey Legaue – day two round-up

Glenanne and Three Rock Rovers made it two wins from two to head up the early season standings following impressive victories over YMCA and Banbridge on Saturday.

Pembroke 2 (J Dale 2) Monkstown 4 (G Sarratt 3, M Guilfoyle)
Guy Sarratt’s hat trick gave Monkstown their first win of the season while Pembroke await their first points of the season as two final quarter goals proved the difference.

Pembroke went 1-0 up when two defenders went for the same ariel ball and missed it, leaving an overload which Julian Dale exploited to score on his backhand. Town, though, drew level by half-time when Rory Nichols cut in from the right and found Sarratt mid circle and he bundled home.

Sarratt’s drag-flick made it 2-1 in the third quarter but Pembroke were back on terms via a straight drag-flick from Dale, 2-2 in the final quarter.

But Sarratt completed his treble from another set piece and then a good counter was slipped to Jeremy Duncan on the left of the D. His reverse was saved and Max Guilfoyle flicked the rebound in; Sarratt got a touch on it but just after the ball had crossed the goal line – the debate mattered only for the player stats as the three points were secured for the sky blues.

The game was very competitive with both defenses were solid as Town took more of their opportunities when it came to the crunch while Pembroke missed the services of Alan Sothern and Mark Duggan this time out.

Three Rock Rovers 3 (B Pasley, B Johnson, R Canning) Banbridge 1 (J McKee)
Three Rock Rovers made it two wins from two as they produced a strong defensive performance to get the best of the visiting Banbridge at Grange Road.

Bann made most of the early inroads with Jonny McKee hitting the post two minutes into the game before breaking the deadlock 15 minutes in with a back post deflection.

Rovers, though, responded in kind with their first shot in anger as Ben Johnson scored a corner flick to make it 1-1 at the end of Q1. Ben Pasley then finished off an excellent counter goal to put the hosts in front and it remained 2-1 until half-time with Harry MacMahon saving a Philip Brown shot off the line.

For Bann, they were frustrated they could not do more with eight corner efforts – not helped by Brown’s departure with a concussion – as Ben Whelan and his defensive team were able to rebuff those attacks. And the result was sealed in the third quarter when Ryan Spencer’s turnover laid on the chance for Ross Canning to score with a first time finish.

Pembroke’s Julian Dale scores the opening goal against Monkstown. Pic: Adrian Boehm

Glenanne 4 (S O’Donoghue 2, S Boucher, A Clayton) YMCA 2 (G Glutz, A Bailey)
Glenanne’s penalty corner machine clicked into gear as they continued their impressive start to the season with a second successive win. Shannon Boucher put them on their way in the first minute with a low corner shot past Jakim Bernsden – who returned last week after a year of injury – for 1-0.

And they ended the first half just as they started it with Shane O’Donoghue firing home down the low road once again for 2-0 in the 35th minute. YM got back into contention courtesy of Aaron Bailey’s effort four minutes after half-time but the Glens restored their two-goal cushion via Adam Clayton almost instantly.

YM’s hopes of closing the gap were stymied by yellow cards for Sam Ryder and Bailey and the game was put to bed by O’Donoghue’s second of the day, a corner shot from the left of the circle. Grant Glutz nabbed a consolation goal on the final hooter.

Corinthian 4 (I Stewart 2, C Futcher, M Wright) UCD 2 (S Byrne, H Lynch)
Corinthian made it four points from six to get up and running in strong fashion as UCD fell to a second defeat of the campaign. Chad Futcher continued his productive early form with his third goal in a week arriving just two minutes into the contest, his drag-flick proving the only goal of the half.

UCD had plenty of the game and chances to level things up in an end-to-end first half in which Corinthian also hit the bar through Max Neill.

Into the second half, the reds capitalised on a loose ball out of defence with their main marksman, Ian Stewart, the man to latch onto it one-on-one, lifting home a lovely second goal. UCD replied with Sam Byrne scoring with a clean strike from the top of the circle but Corinthian were back to 3-1 clear via Max Wright, a great counter move down the left side, finished at the back post.

Stewart added his second from a corner to make it 4-1 to cap an exciting third quarter. UCD got another back from a corner through Harry Lynch but the deficit was too much to claw back.

Annadale 1 (T Cross) Lisnagarvey 5 (P McKibbin, T Chambers, J Lorimer, D Nelson, C Chambers)
Lisnagarvey produced a resounding return to form as they won the Comber Road derby 5-1 over Annadale at Lagan College.

In a cracking opening medley, Peter McKibbin put Garvey in front from a fifth minute penalty stroke only for Tim Cross to reply quickly from a corner, 1-1 at the end of the first quarter.

It stayed that way through the second quarter before Garvey forged ahead with Troy Chambers, James Lorimer and Daniel Nelson all netting in quick succession. Cole Chambers completed the rout with nine minutes to go as Garvey bounced back from their opening day defeat to Glenanne.