The UCD Men’s Hockey team go from strength to strength year after year, and this year’s campaign is one full of optimism with a strong scholarship
system in place in Belfield. Add that to the team’s top-four finish last season and things look bright for the college outfit.
The team currently have three international players in their ranks in the form of Shane O’ Donoghue, Kirk Shimmons and Peter Brown from Banbridge, with the latter being the first player from Northern Ireland to be taken in on an Elite Athlete Scholarship.
With half of the team on scholarships, the players have access to nutritionists, personal trainers and physiotherapy as well as the usual gym and training facilities on site. This bodes well for UCD in their quest for Leinster and Irish honours.
Cycling has garnered a bit of a bad name for itself over the past year or so what with the Lance Armstrong drug scandal that rocked the sport. However, the UCD cycling club has over 60 members and is both a racing and leisure cycling club based on campus. Fresher’s Week has no doubt added plenty more budding cyclists to the club’s ranks and with the recent cycling results coming out of UCD it is no surprise.
Eoin Morton of UCD is the new Leinster Road Race Champion after the event two weekends ago in Dunlavin, Co. Wicklow. Morton won the A1 Men’s race, with fellow UCD cyclist Sean McKenna finishing up in seventh place. Elsewhere, in the Women’s race UCD fared just as well, with Niamh Stephens ending up in second place and claiming a coveted silver medal.
September is the time of the year when all inter-county players long to be still involved, and UCD has been well-represented in the GAA finals this year. Dublin won the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship for 2013 and UCD students were on hand to lift the Sam Maguire trophy.
Post Graduate student Rory O’ Carroll lined out beside UCD teammates Jack McCaffrey, a 2nd Year Medicine student, and Paul Mannion, a 2nd Year Commerce student. They were joined by UCD Graduates Cian O’ Sullivan, Michael Darragh MacAuley, Alan Brogan and Michael Fitzsimons. While UCD student Kevin McLaughlin, studying the Post graduate dip. in Education, was on the losing Mayo side.
The All-Ireland Hurling Final replay was as exciting as the original draw at Croke Park, and the Cork team included UCD’s Willie Egan. The Ladies were not to be outdone, however, and Galway defeated Kilkenny in the Camogie final.
Unfortunately, UCD students Grace Walsh (Nursing), Kate McDonald (Arts), and Leanne Fennelly (Science) were on the defeated Cats side. In the Ladies Football, Monaghan’s Eileen McElroy of UCD lined out against Cork.