Loreto 2nds create club history with a League and Irish Junior Cup Double
League Report (Hook Hockey)
Loreto II bounced back in some style this season as Wendy Byrne’s double in their 2-0 win over UCD saw the club claim division two, what they hope will be the first half of a first ever IJC and league double for the club. It proved a major turnaround as the side diced with relegation just a year earlier. With Suzanne Elliott (pictured with Wendy Byrne) reinstalled to the coaching role after a year out, however, they returned to the top table having finished second and third in her two prior seasons at the helm. Five preseason ties helped to see the side hit the ground running, facing into a potentially huge opening tie with Railway Union which was won 3-2. It set the tone for the season, running up 15 wins and scoring 47 goals.
Top spot was confirmed on March 26 with coach Elliott was delighted with the outcome: “We play a very attacking formation and like to move the ball quickly. We are lucky in that we have a number of players both midfield and forwards who can score goals from open play as can be seen by our results to date.”
She adds that the collective always takes precedent over the individual as the side endeavours to blend a range of ages.
“We have a very balanced team; our focus is on the word ‘team’. We focus not what you as an individual can achieve, it’s what you can do to contribute to the team. There is a mixture of ex-firsts stalwarts – who like to be known as “the Dino’s” – namely Sarah Scott, Steph Hall, Sarah O’Meara, Linda Jenkinson, Mary Harkin, Caitriona Tipping, and Wendy Byrne who combine with the up and coming Phoebe Lyons, Carly Baker, Hayley Mulcahy, Deirdre Fallon and Jessica McGirr.
“I place huge emphasis on my player’s work-rate when they are on the pitch and my mantra is always: ‘I have no problem with mistakes as long are they are made trying to do the right thing’…coupled with the work you put in after the mistake is key”.
Irish Junior Cup Report
We started off our Cup campaign with a first round draw against Portadown n Beaufort where played some superb hockey winning 8-1 and setting the tone for our Cup run. Next stop in round two was a trip to Cork Harlequins where we won convincingly 5-0. On to the quarter finals where we were drawn against Randalstown at home it was a tough match from the recent previous cup holders but we battled hard and won 3-0. We were then drawn against Cork Institute and knew at this semi final stage that any draw would be tough however home advantage was a huge plus and we won 6-1. The advantage of having home support cannot be over estimated and club gave us massive support and encouragement led by the firsts who organized banners and teas coffees and refreshments for the day all of which was greatly appreciated by the players.
Now we were in the final against Pembroke and one week away from achieving our goal. We were very focused on the job at hand and particularly emphasized the importance of maintaining our preparation in the same way as we approached every match. The club rallied around us and went to huge lengths to ensure we had plenty of support. Special thanks has to go to our President Bronnie whose unrelenting support for us cannot be overemphasized. Also to Ines who organized a fantastic pre match reception for family friends and members of Loreto in UCD keeping with her mantra “every time we have a pre match reception Loreto win the Cup” and so we did! Match day final despite the nervous start we put in a great performance. Gradually as we got into the game we started creating goal scoring opportunities however it wasn’t until five minutes into the second half we scored and then Steph Hall completed the win with a last minute goal against her former club. With Coach Sue, Manager Marie and defensive specialist Nicky King together with our squad of sixteen players we completed our pre season goal of the double. The spirit commitment and will to will of each and every member of the team was second to none.
From Another Super Sunday!, posted by on 4/23/2012 (54 items)
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