herald

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Ice-cool Alex complete the perfect season

HOCKEY: Alexandra College completed a perfect season last Friday in Ballyclare to claim their first Kate Russell All-Ireland Schoolgirls' Championship with victories over Bandon GS and Coláiste Iognáid.

There was to be no repeat of last year's heartache, missing out on the title on goal difference, as a thumping 4-0 win over Bandon was added to day one victories over Kilkenny College and the Ballyclare HS hosts.

They had put Alexandra in a great position as the only side to record two wins from the opening day of competition, with the potential to go on and become just the second Leinster side in 12 years to win the coveted crown.

Erika Hinkson started day two with a reverse-sweep in the seventh minute to put Alex on course against the Munster champions. Millie O'Donnell doubled up in the 15th minute from a slipped left-corner move.

And Anna Roopnarinesingh and Emily Beatty added two more goals early in the second half to close out the third leg of their charge.

Ballyclare's tight 2-0 win over Coláiste Iognáid -- Rebecca Quinn and Tori Wallace were on the mark -- kept their interest in the competition alive. And Kilkenny College notched up their second win with a 3-1 victory over Bandon.

It meant just a draw would do against 2009 winners Coláiste Iognáid, but a stunning first half had them well on their way, Hinkson, Beatty and Joanna Turley building a 3-0 lead by the interval.

There were warning signs, Amy Ryan doing well to take one off the line before the Jes responded with efforts from Carey sisters Michelle and Elaine, but Hannah McDermott's rebound 16 minutes from the end sealed the deal, though the Galway side got a late consolation for 4-3.

It meant Miles Warren's side ended the year with an unblemished record of 16 wins from 16 games, annexing both the Leinster Senior Cup and Premier League in the process.

Hosts Ballyclare won the battle for second place with a 3-1 success over Kilkenny, who took third, Jessica West and Amy Jones getting second-half goals after the first period ended 1-1.

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