Men’s Hockey: Lisnagarvey continue to blaze a hot trail
UCD sent packing as in-form Ulster club maintain their scoring streak
James Lorimer: was on target for Lisnagarvey in the league leaders’ home victory over outgunned UCD. Photograph: Rowland White/Presseye/Inpho
Questions are already being asked if anyone can stop Lisnagarvey after yet another hammering of a potential title rival as the men’s EY Hockey League returned following a three-week break for the Olympic qualifiers.
UCD came into their tie at Comber Road in bullish form but were sent back down the M1 with a chastening 5-1 defeat to their name, ending their perfect start to the campaign with a bump.
Ominously for their rivals, it added to Garvey’s 6-0 demolitions of Three Rock Rovers and Pembroke – both who fancy themselves for a playoff place – and a 10-1 mauling of Annadale.
Against UCD, teenagers Troy Chambers and Johnny Lynch had ’Garvey 2-0 up by the 12th minute and while Guy Sarratt halved the deficit, a glorious James Corry goal restored the two-goal gap by half-time.
Corner goals from Andy Williamson and James Lorimer completed the rout in the second half, the upshot of which leaves them three points clear at the top with a massive goal difference of plus 25.
The students will hope to write it off as a blip and not let it distract from what has been a remarkable start to the season since promotion.
What will be a concern, though, is they ran up three yellow cards for a second game running, an issue that needs to be nipped in the bud.
Monkstown, meanwhile, formally celebrated their 125th anniversary on Saturday evening in gala style with an impressive 4-1 win over Glenanne in their back pocket.
It maintains their unbeaten start to the season – two wins, two draws – as they overcame an early concession to a Shannon Boucher drag-flick. Rory Nichols has been a key component since returning from Australia and he set up Ryan Spencer for the equaliser before scoring the second goal himself.
The experienced ex-internationals Gareth Watkins and Davy Carson completed the win in the closing quarter. The Glens, who travelled to Rathdown with just 13 players, wilted in the second half.
YMCA garnered their first points of the season when they came back from 2-1 down to beat Pembroke 3-2 in their first league tie on the refurbished Wesley College turf.
Trailing 2-1 at half-time, Grant Glutz unleashed an unstoppable drag-flick to tie things up before Tony Brophy won it with the last act of the third quarter, profiting from an assist from Ben Cullen who was on debut.
Banbridge beat Corinthian 3-1 while Three Rock Rover were too strong for Annadale, overcoming a second minute deficit to win 9-1.