Cillian Morrison hopes his four-goal salvo against Waterford United in the EA Sports League Cup will be enough to earn him a place in UCD’s first team for Monaghan United’s visit to the Belfield Bowl on Friday night.
The 20-year-old scored a six-minute hat-trick between the 15th and 21st minutes on Monday before adding a fourth in the 51st minute. An excellent personal performance for the former Derry City striker, who also played Gaelic football for St Eunan’s seniors and the Donegal U-21 side under Jim McGuinness that reached the All-Ireland final in 2010, helped the Students into the next round of the competition where they will play St Patrick’s Athletic.
“It was just one of those nights really when everything I hit seemed to fly in,” Morrison said of his impressive first start of the season. “I hadn’t been on the team, bar half an hour against Dundalk last weekend, so I was delighted to have a good game.
“Hopefully I’ll be in from the start on Friday and we’re playing away to Derry City the week afterwards. I used to play underage with Derry and it would be nice to get the chance at the Brandywell. The manager, Martin Russell, generally doesn’t name the team till an hour before any game so we’ll have to wait and see.”
Mark Anthony McGinley from Ards was in goal for UCD, having got back into the first team for last week’s 2-1 loss against Dundalk. The Students have picked up three points – a fine opening day win against Cork City – from their four outings in the Premier Division this term.
“We started off great and even in the second game, away to Sligo Rovers, we played pretty well,” Morrison added. “We equalised in stoppage time but Sligo went up the field to win it 2-1 at the very end. Maybe we showed a little inexperience, as our whole squad is aged between 19 and 23 but hopefully we’ll get a result on Friday against Monaghan.”
Morrison is the son of Seamus and Marjorie from Glebe in Letterkenny and is currently a second year civil engineering student. At UCD As a schoolboy, he played with Ballyraine and Letterkenny & District, before making his way to Maiden City in Derry, where Everton’s Darron Gibson and Shane Ferguson of Newcastle United were graduates. The then teenager then signed for Derry City, playing for their U-18 and U-20 sides before joining UCD, where he is also currently preparing for exams.
According to our good friend Wikipedia, the fastest hat-trick in history belongs to Tommy Ross, who scored three for Ross County in 90 seconds back in 1964. No YouTube footage of Ross’s achievement, but Jimmy O’Connor completed a 1967 hat-trick in two minutes and 13 seconds for Shelbourne against Bohemians.