HOCKEY: Methodist College celebrate All-Ireland glory

Katie Larmour and Methody are celebrating again
Katie Larmour and Methody are celebrating again

Methodist College won the Subway All-Ireland Schoolgirls Championships for the first time by the narrowest of margins – edging out reigning champions Crescent College by a single goal on goal difference.

It owed much to the inspiration of captain Katie Larmour who hailed her side’s amazing achievement, winning the competition after her side only won the Ulster title last week for the first time in 28 years.

“It’s so exciting,” she said.

“Methody have never won it and I don’t think we have ever been down involved in the competition before.

“It’s just unbelievable; if someone had of said we would win the Ulster Schools’ Cup and the Kate Russell, I probably would have laughed at them. The level of competition was fabulous.”

Larmour’s role encompassed six goals and four assists en route to earning the player of the tournament crown, something she said was a bit out of the norm for her but a truly special way to end her schools’ career.

“It is a bit unusual – I don’t regularly score. It’s a bit of a change!” she laughed.

“This is the last time I will wear this school shirt so I am so happy that it ended like that. There aren’t that many in upper sixth like me, most have another year so they should have a great team for next year.”

It was a thrilling duel throughout with Methody, Crescent and Alexandra College all vying for the title from beginning to end.

Methody put the pressure on yesterday when they beat Loreto Kilkenny 4-0 with Rhiannon Coulter netting twice in the closing few minutes. These goals would prove crucial in the final standings.

Crescent continued their charge with a 4-0 win of their own against Salerno with Aebhfhinn Bourke scoring all four goals in a brilliant performance.

Crucially, though, Methody followed up with a 3-1 win over Alexandra College.

The Dubliners had taken a first half lead when Jan Cleary poked home from a couple of inches out. But the story of the tournament was one of penalty corners and Methody converted three in the second half to claim this result with Madison Bowyer, Larmour and Rhiannon Coulter all finding the backboard.

That result left Alex out of contention for the main title but Limerick hosts Crescent still could pip the Ulster side if they could pull off a three-goal win in the tournament’s final game.

Crescent created numerous first half openings against Alex but no goals accrued until 11 minutes from the end when Aebhfhinn Bourke converted.

They threw everything forward but could not break through, meaning Methodist were the victors in the final reckoning. Crescent ended second overall with Alex ending third.