Students in seventh EYHL heaven

by Stephen Findlater
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UCD powered to the EY Hockey League title in typically emphatic style, leaving nothing to chance with a thunderous 7-1 win at Ards.

It was a 15th win from their last 16 in the league and they have just one loss all season to date on the opening day of the season against second placed Cork Harlequins, their only loss in two regular league seasons.

Quins still had a mathematical chance of the title prior to the weekend but UCD quickly put such notions to bed and added the regular season title and a spot in Europe to the Irish Senior Cup won a fortnight ago.

Their next task will be a clean sweep when they contest the EY Champions Trophy in two weekends time at Grange Road.

“We will enjoy this but we have one more league game next week and want to finish strong and then take that on to the EY Champions Trophy finals,” UCD captain Deirdre Duke said afterwards.

“We are pretty proud of our record but it does bother us that we have that one loss [in the last two seasons] but that has driven us on and is testament to ho hungry we are for success. That loss at the beginning of the season spurred us on to where we are to today.”

They did so despite the absence of coach Miles Warren who remained in Dublin following the birth of his second child earlier in the week. Nonetheless, any of his nerves would have been eased in the early Twitter updates. Mick McKinnon took on coaching duties.

It took less than eight minutes for Katie Mullan to put UCD in front and six minutes later, Sara Twomey produced a great effort from the top of the circle for 2-0.

Abbie Russell made it three off the back of good build-up play by Mullan before the end of the first quarter. Katherine Egan stretched the lead further to 4-0 before Chloe Brown pulled one back from a corner.

It was not the start of a remarkable comeback, however, with Emma Russell sending the ball in to her younger sister Abbie to convert for 5-1.

Lena Tice shot straight down the middle for number six and Mullan produced a typically powerful shot from the top for a magnificent seven.

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