Barber cuts down Pegasus double bid
Pegasus missed out on the chance of an Irish Hockey League and Irish Senior Cup double when they went down 1-0 to Cork Harlequins in the semi-final of the knock-out competition at the Dub yesterday.
The Belfast side, badly missing Shirley McCay, who instead had to attend Ireland training, seldom looked like repeating their 3-0 win in the corresponding league game eight days earlier.
Defences were on top with ex-Ireland player Cliodhna Sargent a commanding figure for Cork before going off with what seemed a serious knee injury.
Stephanie Thompson was denied before Quins grabbed the winner when, after former Ulster Elks player Michelle Barry forced a set-piece, Emma Barber drove the ball low into the net.
Cork will now face Loreto in next month's final after they defeated Leinster rivals Railway Union on penalties after a scoreless draw.
Pegasus will now turn their attentions back to the league when a point from Saturday's game with Muckross will see them crowned IHL champions.
On Saturday, Muckross plunged Ards into danger of automatic relegation after winning the basement battle 2-1.
The Ulster side have five points, one more than Muckross who have a game in hand but a tougher run-in - they face UCD twice after playing Pegasus while Ards take on marginally less difficult opposition in Railway Union and Cork Harlequins.
Sophie Barnwell and Jessica Holland scored in the first half to put Muckross 2-0 up before Brenna McEwen reduced the deficit with 15 minutes left.
Meanwhile, at domestic level, Lurgan moved three points clear at the top of the Ulster Premier League following a 3-1 win over Banbridge at Havelock Park.
Goals from Emma Lindsay and Lydia McNeill in the space of two minutes put the champions in the ascendancy.
Natalie Barr added a third from a penalty corner before Jill Costley's late consolation.
Lisnagarvey have jumped into third place behind Ballymoney after a 2-1 home win over Randalstown with goals from Louise McCracken and Kerry McIlwaine.
Queen's kept their slim title hopes alive with a 2-0 victory over Ulster Elks with a goal in each half from Emily McStea and Tori Hastings, while Dungannon were 3-1 winners over Mossley in the other top flight game.
Yesterday: Irish Senior Cup semi-finals: Pegasus 0 Cork Harlequins 1 (E Barber); Loreto 0 Railway Union 0 (Loreto won 3-1 in shootout)
Irish Hockey Trophy: semi-finals: Portadown 2 (A Black 2) Greenfields 2 (Greenfields won 1-0 in shoot-out); NUIG 1 Cork C of I 2 .
Saturday: EY Irish Hockey League: Ards 1 (B McEwen) Muckross 2 (S Barnwell, J Holland)
Ulster Premier League: Banbridge 1 (J Costley) Lurgan 3 (E Lindsay, L McNeill, N Barr); Dungannon 3 (L Cassels, Z Henderson, J Hood) Mossley 1 (N McMillan); Lisnagarvey 2 (L McCracken, K McIlwaine) Randalstown 1 (CJ McDonald); Queen's 2 (E McStea, T Hastings) Ulster Elks 0
Senior One: Raphoe 7 (K Love 2, S Barnett, L Patterson 2, W Patterson 2) Omagh 0
IHL 2 Pool 2: Catholic Institute 1 Monkstown 1