Irish Hockey League: Elks defeat Ards in Ulster derby
Ulster Elks kept up the pressure on IHL leaders Hermes with a 2-0 win over Ards in the Ulster derby at Jordanstown.
The goals came from Jessica McMaster and Megan Frazer as the Elks remained three points behind the Dublin side.
In the men's IHL Lisnagarvey moved second with a 2-1 home victory over Ulster rivals Cookstown.
Banbridge are third after a scoreless draw at Three Rock Rovers while Annadale remain rooted at the bottom following a 3-1 loss at Pembroke.
|Women's Irish Hockey League|
It was a full-blooded Ulster derby played throughout in torrential rain as the Elks made it four wins and a draw to start the IHL.
However, they were made to battle all the way by an Ards side that slipped to seventh place with only one win and two draws in their opening five games.
The breakthrough for the Elks came in the 26th minute when Shirley McCay's ball into the circle was controlled by 18 year-old McMaster, who took a touch before providing a composed finish, high into the net.
The points were made safe in the third quarter when McCay and Frazer combined at a penalty corner with Frazer's backhand shot finding the corner of the goal.
Hermes held on to beat Railway Union with internationals Chloe Watkins, Naomi Carroll and Anna O'Flanagan, with her ninth of the season, getting the goals in a 3-2 win.
The Elks will face both Dublin clubs away from home next weekend.
Pegasus eased the pressure on themselves with a first win of the season - a 4-0 success over bottom club Greenfields with goals from Suzanne Ferris, Pamela Glass, Taite Doherty and Vanessa Surgenor.
There were also victories for UCD and Cork Harlequins.
|Men's Irish Hockey League|
|Three Rock Rovers||0-0||Banbridge|
|Monkstown||4-3||Cork C of I|
Lisnagarvey won their third game in a row as they took the spoils over Cookstown, leaving their opponents in ninth place in the standings.
Strikes from Sean Murray and Andy Forrest gave Garvey a 2-0 lead before Stuart Smyth pulled a goal back but there would be no further scoring in the final quarter.
Garvey are a point behind Monkstown after they came from behind to edge Cork C of I 4-3 as Gareth Watkins celebrated his recall to the Irish side last week with two goals.
Glenanne defeated Railway Union 3-2 while there's a full set of games on Sunday for the men.
Three of the Ulster sides are at home - Banbridge face Cork C of I, Annadale take on Railway Union, Cooktown entertain leaders Monkstown while Lisnagarvey will look to keep up their challenge at the top with success at Glenanne.