Old Alexandra keep Hockey League promotion dream alive
Dublin side advance to second-round playoffs after winning all four games at Milltown
Old Alexandra have a chance in two weeks’ time to earn promotion to next season’s Hockey League. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho
Old Alexandra are through to the second round of the Hockey League promotion play-offs after winning all four of their first-round games at Milltown over the weekend.
Both the Dublin side and Catholic institute had taken maximum points from their games on Saturday, making their meeting on Sunday morning key, Rachel Kelly getting the winner for Alexandra six minutes from time after being put through on goal by Rebecca Evans.
And it was Evans who got the only score in Alexandra’s final game against Queens, that win sealing them the tournament and giving them a chance in two weeks’ time to earn promotion to next season’s Hockey League. They will take on hosts UCC, Lurgan, Muckross and whoever prevails in the Connacht league.
Pegasus, meanwhile, all but sealed their place in the Champions Trophy with a 3-0 win away to Ards, one more point from their four remaining games all that is required to mathematically wrap it up.
Game in hand
Railway Union, though, let slip a two-goal lead in their draw with Cork Harlequins, leaving them with a little more work to do before they seal qualification.
Rachel Hobbs scored twice in the final quarter for the League’s second-placed side after Kate McKenna and Katie Lloyd had given Railway a 2-0 first-quarter lead. They’re still in a comfortable enough position, five points clear of Loreto, but Loreto have a game in hand.
The relegation battle is unchanged after the bottom three all lost on Sunday, Monkstown going down 5-0 to UCD, Trinity losing 4-0 to Loreto and Pembroke Wanderers beaten 2-1 at home by Belfast Harlequins. Monkstown, five points adrift of Trinity, remain favourites for automatic relegation, but there’s just a point between Trinity and Pembroke – whoever finishes ninth going in to a relegation play-off.
Hockey League – Sunday:
Loreto 4 (S Clarke, N Daly, M Jennings, S Torrans), Trinity 0; Railway Union 2 (K McKenna, K Lloyd), Cork Harlequins 2 (R Hobbs 2); Ards 0, Pegasus 3 (H Grieve, R Murdock, T Doherty); Monkstown 0, UCD 5 (D Duke 2, K Mullan 2, E Russell); Pembroke Wanderers 1, Belfast Harlequins 2.
Hockey League - Provincial Play-offs (at Milltown), Saturday: Corinthian 0, Old Alexandra 1; Dungannon 0, Catholic Institute 2; Queens 4, Corinthian 4; Alexandra 4, Dungannon 0; Catholic Institute 2, Queens 0. Sunday: Dungannon 0, Corinthian 1; Catholic Institute 0, Alexandra 1; Queens 0, Dungannon 0; Corinthian 0, Catholic Institute 3; Alexandra 1, Queens 0.