Hermes-Monkstown held to draw by Belfast Harlequins

Pembroke pick up first EY Hockey League win of season against Railway Union

Chloe Watkins who scored Hermes’ second goal against Belfast Harlequins. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Chloe Watkins who scored Hermes’ second goal against Belfast Harlequins. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

 

The weekend’s EY Hockey League programme produced a couple of results that would have prompted a double-take or two, with second-from-bottom Belfast Harlequins drawing 2-2 away to leaders Hermes-Monkstown and Pembroke Wanderers, who had been propping up the table, picking up their first win of the season away to Railway Union.

In their opening game of the campaign back in September, Hermes thumped Belfast Harlequins 10-1, and with home advantage this time around they might have anticipated at least as comfortable an afternoon. Having withstood intense early pressure, though, it was the visitors who took the lead through Gemma Frazer, when she deflected home a penalty corner.

But Hermes recovered to go 2-1 up, Sophie Moore levelling before half-time and Chloe Watkins converting a penalty stroke in the third quarter after Anna O’Flanagan had been upended. Remarkably, though, Harlequins secured a draw with four minutes to go when Frazer got her second goal, again from a corner.

Surprise

Loreto, meanwhile, picked up a fine 2-1 win away to third-placed Cork Harlequins, moving within a point of them, with Lizzie Colvin and Hannah Matthews’s second-half goals wiping out the first-quarter lead Naomi Carroll had given the hosts. Pegasus had the biggest win of the weekend, Alex Speers getting a hat-trick in a 9-0 trashing of Ulster Elks, who are now bottom of the table. And on Sunday, UCD moved within two points of Hermes when they beat Ards 3-0.

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