Ards upset Harlequins to seal Irish Senior Cup progress

Becky Weir was on the scoresheet for Ards in the first half.
Becky Weir was on the scoresheet for Ards in the first half.

Ards produced the only real surprise in the Irish Senior Cup on Saturday as they defeated EY Hockey League rivals Belfast Harlequins by the odd goal in five at Londonderry Park.

The home team had been having a torrid season and currently sit just a point off the bottom of the national league table with just two points from nine matches.

Quins, in contrast, are on course for a place in the end-of-season play-offs and can boast Ireland World Cup silver medallists Zoe Wilson and Lizzie Colvin in their ranks.

Francesca Brown and Becky Weir scored in the first-half after Lucy Geddes had put the visitors ahead.

Brown made it 3-1 after the restart and then Abigail Edwards responded to set up a grandstand finish but Ards held on.

Elsewhere, results went with the form book with last year’s beaten finalists Pegasus comfortably beating Trinity 5-2 to book their place in tomorrow’s quarter-final draw.

Pegasus led 4-0 at the break with goals from Michelle Harvey, Lucy McKee (2) and Hannah Craig.

The Ulster side took their foot off the gas after that and the Dublin students replied with two Sally Campbell goals before Alex Speers added number five late on.

Ballymoney, Lurgan, Banbridge and Ulster Elks all fell to top-flight opposition leaving Pegasus and Ards to fly the flag in the last eight.

Money lost 2-1 to Loreto at the Joey Dunlop Centre where Olivia Mullan got the consolation while Megan Frazer was on the mark for the Elks in a 3-1 defeat to Railway Union.

Banbridge returned home for Cork empty-handed as they went down 5-0 to Harlequins while Lurgan lost 6-0 to UCD in Dublin.

In the second-tier Irish Hockey Trophy, there were wins for Omagh, Portadown and Raphoe while Randalstown defeated Rainey 2-1 in the Denman Ulster Shield.

On the men’s front, a superb hat-trick from Ryan Burgess sealed Annadale an excellent 3-2 EYHL win at Cork C of I.

The result has pulled the Belfast team further clear of the relegation zone.

In IHL 2, William Robinson score twice as Instonians beat Kilkeel 4-2 but Bangor were hammered 8-3 by UCD.

Johnny Taylor’s late goal gave Newry a surprise 3-2 win over Ulster Premier leaders Mossley.

Ballynahinch will meet Antrim in the Linden Cup final on New Year’s Day after identical 4-1 wins over Ballymena and CIYMS respectively.