Methodist claim All-Ireland Schoolgirls hockey title
Belfast school pip Crescent of Limerick on goal difference
Methodist College won the All-Ireland Schoolgirls Championships for the first time, doing so by the narrowest of margins.
In the end, they edged out reigning champions Crescent College by a single goal on goal difference when the final scores came in.
The victory owed much to the sublime skills of Katie Larmour, surely an international of the future, who ended the tournament with six goals and four assists to her name and was the star attraction throughout a gruelling competition.
Sitting second overnight thanks to a win over Galway’s Salerno and a draw with Crescent, Methody began day two with a big 4-0 win over Loreto Kilkenny that put them in pole position.
Crucially, they followed up with a 3-1 win over Alexandra College, the leaders after day one. The Dubliners had taken a first half lead when Jan Cleary poked home from a couple of inches out. But the story of the tournament was one of penalty corners and Methody converted three in the second half to claim this result with Madison Bowyer, Larmour and Rhiannon Coulter all finding the backboard.
That result left Alex out of contention but Limerick hosts Crescent still could pip the Ulster side if they could pull off a three-goal win in the tournament’s final game.
Crescent created numerous first half openings with Jane Kirby wreaking havoc but no goals accrued until 11 minutes from the end when Aebhfhinn Bourke – with her fourth goal of the day – converted.
They threw everything forward but could not break through, meaning Methodist were the victors in the final reckoning.
Crescent ended second overall with Alex ending third.
Subway Kate Russell All-Ireland Schoolgirls Championships
Day one results: Crescent CC 2 (M O’Sullivan 2) Methodist College 2 (K Larmour, A Armstrong); Alexandra College 2 (I Delamar, A Acheson) Salerno 1 (M Corcoran); Crescent CC 2 (N O’Keeffe 2) Loreto Kilkenny 0; Methodist College 5 (K Larmour 3, M Bowyer, S McCollum) Salerno 3 (M Hughes, R Gilligan, E Burke); Alexandra College 4 (F McDermott 2, A Acheson, S Roopnarinesingh) Loreto Kilkenny 1 (J Brennan)
Day two: Loreto Kilkenny 0 Methodist College 4 (R Coulter 2, K Larmour, J Savage); Crescent College 4 (A Bourke 4) Salerno 0; Methodist College 3 (M Bowyer, K Larmour, R Coulter) Alexandra College 1 (J Cleary); Salerno 1 Loreto Kilkenny 1 (S Browne); Alexandra College 0 Crescent 1 (A Bourke)
1. Methodist College 10pts (+8)
2. Crescent College 10pts (+7)
3. Alexandra College 6pts (+1)
4. Salerno 1pt (-7)
5. Loreto Kilkenny 1pt (-9)