Electric Ireland Sigerson Cup round-up
By JOHN FALLON
UCD, the most prolific winners of the competition with 33 titles, will meet DCU in the quarter-finals of this year’s Electric Ireland HE GAA Sigerson Cup following the completion on Wednesday evening of the battle for the last eight.
But champions St Mary’s University from Belfast, who won their second crown last year, were knocked out at the first hurdle in defence of their title when they went down by 0-17 to 1-9 to Ulster University at Woodlands in Belfast.
Ulster University will now meet University of Limerick next week in the quarter-finals, with IT Tralee taking on Dublin Institute of Technology, while UCC will host NUI Galway.
The holders St Mary’s led by 0-7 to 0-6 at the interval in freezing conditions at Woodlands in Belfast but ‘The Ranch’ were outplayed after the restart by the Jordanstown side who this year are bidding for their sixth Sigerson Cup title and first since 2007.
They pulled away with a string of points from Tyrone’s Mark Bradley, Ryan McAnespie of Monaghan and Down’s Niall Madine.
‘The Ranch’ never gave up with Oisin O’Neill scoring a late consolation goal on a day when they surrendered their crown.
UCD, with 33 titles under their belt, will take on Dublin rivals DCU in the quarter-finals next week.
DCU secured a hard-fought 1-7 to 0-7 win over a brave Dundalk Institute of Technology in a game which was switched to the Louth Centre of Excellence at Darver.
The Dundalk college led by 0-4 to 0-2 at the end of the opening half after points from David McGivney, Donal Meegan, Tadhg McEneaney, with DCU suffering a blow when Monaghan’s Barry Kerr was sent off.
But DCU hit back in the second-half and drew level with a goal from a penalty from Eanna O’Connor who landed a couple of late points to see them through after Dublin’s Shane Carthy from Naomh Mearnog had edged them in front.
Dublin Institute of Technology, who won their only Sigerson in 2013, will take on IT Tralee in the quarter-finals after they saw off the challenge of IT Carlow by 1-11 to 0-8 at Grangegorman.
A goal from Mayo’s Conor Loftus gave DIT the perfect platform in the opening half and they turned around leading by 1-5 to 0-3.
They held an edge throughout the second-half with Shane Dempsey leading the way to advance to a quarter-final showdown against a Tralee side next week who are seeking their fourth Sigerson success and first since former Donegal manager Jim McGuinness led them to glory in 1999.
The quarter-final line-up will be completed by UCC hosting NUIG, after both had earlier booked their passage. The clash brings together the second and third most successful colleges in the competition, with 22 titles being captured by the Galway college, while UCC have won 21.