Maynooth University claim Crowley Cup
IUFU CROWLEY CUP FINAL
MAYNOOTH UNIVERSITY 1 UCC 1 (AET)
(Maynooth won 5-4 on pens)
Although it took a penalty shootout to finally get the better of 12-times winners UCC in a closely fought Crowley Cup Final it didn’t deter from the celebrations of the tournament hosts Maynooth University as they recorded only their second success in nearly 50-years of this popular Irish Universities competition.
Two evenly matched sides had fought their way to the decider and with both defences well on top throughout the whole game chances were kept to a very minimum.
Cork took the early advantage with the opening goal coming in within 12-minutes.
Patrick O’Callaghan was on the mark with a clinical finish with a low first time shot from just inside the area into the bottom corner of the Maynooth net.
Good work by full back Tom Mason had set up the chance with his well placed cross from the left that picked out O’Callaghan who confidently applied the finish past the helpless ‘keeper Luke Anderson.
Maynooth recovered and responded with a well delivered Dean Russell free kick that was close to getting them back on terms but the UCC ‘keeper Vieko Vondra did well to gather the ball.
Later, Leon Kennedy finally got past full back Lughaidh Wiseman the left and fired in a low drive that whistled past the UCC post.
Maynooth eventually levelled the tie coming up to the break when Lord Afrika stretched to meet a great Paul Costello cross from the left and steer the ball past Vondra.
It was a timely boost for the home side going into the break but they failed to make any further inroads on the resumption as the Cork defence proved difficult to get past.
Likewise at the other end UCC found the solid defending of the Maynooth back four also hard to penetrate.
Chances were few and Conor Kelly tested Anderson with a drive from distance that the Maynooth ‘keeper did well to gather at a second attempt.
The best chance of the half arrived in the closing minutes when Maynooth winger Kennedy crossed from the right but Conuir O’Giollan just failed to get a proper head on the ball and Vondra held it.
The extra-time was played out in similar fashion with defences dominating again but just as the finish approached Maynooth had one last chance to grab the win when a Josh O’Toole header feom Kearney's corner was brilliantly kept out by Vondra who later picked up the Player of the Tournament award.
The penalty shoot out was another close affair and both sides hit the target in their first four attempts.
UCC’s takers Sean Varian, Dylan Bradley, Vondra and Mason Fellis all beat Anderson before Zeno Eusepi Harris lifted his effort over the Maynooth crossbar.
This slip then gave Kearney the chance to clinch the win for Maynooth and the winger made no mistake placing the ball well out of Vondra’s reach after Dean Russell, Cian Kavanagh, Paul Costello and Conor Burke had earlier netted their spot kicks.
Player of the Tournament: Vieko Vondra (UCC).
MAYNOOTH UNIVERSITY: Luke Anderson; Conor Burke, Josh O’Toole, James Boyne, Dean Russell; Cian Kavanagh; Leon Kennedy, Neill Mackin, Paul Costello, Tom Somers; Lord Afrika.
Subs: Ryan Byrne (for Somers 56), Ross Brennan (Mackin 68), Conuir O’Giollan (for Afrika 78). Not used: Cian Herbert, Kristien Nyphytsaka, Tom Fagan, Ryan Byrne.
UCC: Vieko Vondra; Lughaidh Wiseman, Sean Varian, Alex O’Connor, Tom Mason; Patrick O’Callaghan, Dylan Bradley, Keith White, Jimmy Goldsmith; Zeno Eusepi Harris, Mark Lynes.
Subs: Conor Kelly (for Lynes 18), Leo Cheung (for White 55), Mason Fellis (for O’Callaghan 78), Cillian Desmond (for Mason 92). Not used: Suddy Nair, Stephen Galvin,Liam Cotter.
Referee: David Gallagher. Assistants: Colin Duffy, Owen Murphy.
IUFU DUGGAN CUP FINAL
ROYAL COLLEGE OF SURGEONS 3 DCU 0
Three first-half goals proved enough to give Royal College of Surgeons a comfortable Duggan Cup final win over DCU at Maynooth University and their first Irish Universities trophy since their only other Duggan Cup success in 2008.
Saif Al Mandhari hit the first goal at after eleven-minutes with a well struck free kick from just inside the DCU half that sailed over the head of goalkeeper Alex McCann.
The lead was doubled three minutes later when DCU defender Andrew Bevins deflected Hamzeh Sabbagh’s shot past his goalkeeper.
The lively Sabbagh hit the third just before the break from the penalty spot to give the Surgeons a comfortable lead.
Luck hadn’t been with DCU in that torrid opening half and Darren Fanning might have pulled a goal back but his free kick came off the Surgeons upright.
DCU did respond after the break and despite constant pressure they were unable to make any impression on a resolute Surgeons side who were determined to capture a long awaited trophy.
ROYAL COLLEGE OF SURGEONS: Kakariya Ali, Mohammed Al Jahwari, Saif Al Mandhari, Abdulla Aljanahi, Eoin Lombard, Mohammed Al Balasghi, Hamzeh Sabbagh, Mohammed Al Hashami, Khamis Al Rabanni, Rami Rassam, Kyle Ivers.
DCU: Alex McCann; Shane McGeary, Sean Harte, Andrew Bevins, Mark Thornberry; Matthew Kenny, Cian Monaghan; Shane Moore, Leon Farmer, Darren Fanning; Jack Patterson.
Referee: Colin Duffy. Assistants: Pat Conway, Brian Cleary.
IUFU Crowley Cup
Maynooth University 1 (Lord Afrifa) UCC 1 (Patrick O’Callaghan) aet
Maynooth won 5-4 on pens.
Maynooth University 3 (Leon Kennedy 3) Queens University Belfast 1 (James Stolberger)
UCC 2 (Dylan Bradley, Zeno Eusepi Harris) Ulster University-Coleraine 1 (Sam Lindsay).
DCU 1 (Jack Patterson) Queens University Belfast 1 (James Stolburger).
Queens won 5-4 on pens.
Royal College of Surgeons 2 (Asem Kharabsheh, Khamis Alrabani) Ulster University-Coleraine 3 (Cameron Bell, Joe Shevlin, Darran Wallace)
Ulster University-Jordanstown 1 (David Dripps) UCC 12 (Zeno Eusepi Harris 3, Mark Lynes 2, Jimmy Goldsmith 2, Dylan Bradley 2, Keith White, Leo Cheung, Conor Kelly)
Maynooth University v Trinity College Dublin (off).
DCU 0 Royal College of Surgeons 3 (Saif Al Mandhari, Andrew Bevins og, Hamzeh Sabbagh pen)
Ulster University-Jordanstown 2 (Ryan McNichol, Filip Widzyk) Royal College of Surgeons 10 (Matthew Macciacchera 2, Rami Rassan 2, Hamza Sabbag 2, Khalmis Al Rabaani, Abdulaziz Mehairi, Mohammed Albalushi, Mohammed Alhashimi).