Ursulines In Total Control

Munster Senior ‘A’ League

Munster Senior ‘A’ League

Ursuline Convent, Thurles: 4

Mount Mercy College, Cork: 1

Ursulines’ band wagon rolls on as they gain momentum in their charge for the Munster League title. Mount Mercy were their latest victims, going down 4-1 at Brittas Road on Wednesday last. With Maria Kinane in dominant form in her role at centre back, Ursulines were moving forward immediately from hit off. Winger Aine Phelan was most unlucky in the third minute. Mercy’s respite was a short one as three minutes on, Kate Crotty ghosted up field and sent a blistering shot goal wards. Emer Herlihy got the touch, sending Ursulines on their way. Two short corners followed but Mercy worked their way out of danger each time.

By now the Cork side were beginning to create pockets of attack keeping away from Maria’s space, they worked down the lines but sweeper Clare O’Dwyer was the fly in Mercy’s ointment as she cleared ball after ball, aided on occasions by the boots of keeper Sylvia O’Donnell, the new star of Ursuline Hockey.

Thwarted in all their attacks, Mercy needed some form of a life line. And it came in the 16th minute when both umpires decided to switch pitches due to the slippery surface caused by frost. Five minutes after the move, Emma Coleman levelled for the visitors, but the Cork celebration was short lived. Two minutes from half time Laura Costello showed brilliant pace as her speedy legs took her down the left wing, into the circle giving Ursulines a 2-1 lead at the break.

A minute after the restart, Laura had her brace, when she converted the lead up work of Kate. Ten minutes later “Mercy” had a chance of reducing the deficit with short corners. But again, Sylvia and Clare cleared. From the second clearance Rachel Hodgins picked up outside her own circle, and motored upfield, out stripping the would be defenders around her and sent in a peach of a pass to Aoife McGrath who rattled the back board for a 4-1 victory. Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Darielle Ronan injured during the game.

Munster Senior ‘A’ League

Ashton School, Cork: 1

Ursuline Convent, Thurles: 4

Two days after their win over Mount Mercy College, Ursulines were on their way South, to the Mahon area in Cork City where they played Ashton School. The quick turn around took a little bit of the edge off the Thurles Girls, as Ashton forced the pace in the early exchanges, but failed to pierce Ursulines’ rear guard, where once again Clare O’Dwyer and Maria Kinane were in rare order. Normal service was restored in the 10th minute when midfielder Edel Nyland went on one of her excursions. The end result here was that Orla Lynch was most unlucky with her effort. A quick return to the other end saw keeper Sylvia O’Donnell kick to safety. Edel pounced on the ball in the middle of the park. Her run into the circle gained her a short corner. Follow up work gave her the chance to fire home Ursulines’ opening salvo. Near the end of this half the Ashton keeper earned her merit badges with a series of saves from Julie Murphy, Emer Herlihy and ending with Edel.

One minute after the restart Sylvia was called once again to save Ursuline blushes. Immediately followed by a three pronged attack from Edel, Fiona Short and Aoife McGrath, Fiona came up trumps with goal number two. Ashton were starting to wilt. Sensing this, Edel was away on yet another surge leading to Julie Murphy netting Ursulines’ third. And Edel was the play maker once more when she set up Maria for the four timer.

Somehow from somewhere, Ashton found new reserves of strength when they ground their way upfield in the last minute of play. To their eternal credit, Alice Grady “spirited” the ball past Sylvia, the only way it could be done, to make the scoreboard that bit more presentable from an Ashton point of view at 4-1 to Thurles.

Ursulines: Sylvia O’Donnell (Keeper), Clare O’Dwyer, Anna Crotty, Maria Kinane, Caroline Murtagh, Edel Nyland, Aoife McGrath, Orla Lynch, (Capt.), Julie Murphy, Emer Herlihy, Aine Phelan, Kate Crotty, Laura Costello, Rachael Hodgins, Roisin Dowling, Fiona Shortt, Darielle Ronan, Louise Barlow.

Munster Junior ‘A’ League

Ursuline Convent, Thurles: 4

Mount Mercy College, Cork: 1

Prior to Senior League game on the Wednesday this talented Ursuline side disposed of their Cork guests in facile manner. Fast into their stride the opening goal was scored in the 4th minute. Left winger Ciara Cummins grabbed possession near the half way line and sped upfield into the circle, an early lead for the Homesters. From the restart, Ursulines were back into the circle in “jig time”. Results, goal number two scored by Alison Bourke. A ten minute barrage by Ursulines at the start of the second half had Mercy in all kinds of trouble. Somehow they survived five corners but the sixth one was their downfall as right winger Rachel Perdue rocked the back board with a searing shot. Twenty minutes into this period, a rare lapse by the Thurles girls was punished by Grainne Kerr who gave keeper Sara Timmins no chance with her shot. Ursulines did have the last word when a short corner wound up in the net thanks to the persistence of Siobhan Murcham.

Ursulines: Sarah Timmins (Keeper), Carol Casey (Capt.), Eva Flanagan, Roisin Dowling, Rachel Hodgins, Becky Danaher, Kate Crotty, Laura Costello, Rachel Perdue, Alison Bourke, Ciara Cummins, Aine Coman, Siobhan Murcham, Lorna O’Dwyer, Aoife Booth, Susie Osborne.

To Genevieve - Our Fond Farewell

Coming back in the coach last Friday, despite the Senior A’s 4-1 League win over Ashton, there was a tinge of sadness in the air. On board was Genevieve Ridge, former goalkeeper on the Senior ‘A’ team having her last trip with the “Gang”, as she and the Ridge family are shortly relocating to Canada. Since she passed through Ursuline gates in September 2007, Genevieve has stood between our hockey posts. Having tasted success at Minor level, her greatest achievement came in 2010 when she kept goal in both the Junior Cup and League wins. The Cup win is an ever lasting one for her as twice in that final with Crescent College, Ursulines came from behind to force a draw, 2-2 and eventually won 4-2 after extra time.

Genevieve, best wishes to you and your family from all at Ursuline Hockey. Don’t forget to return!