Violet Hill through to All Ireland Football Final
Paul McGirr Cup (Junior All-Ireland U16.5 Championship)
St.Colman’s Newry 2-07
St. Gerald’s Castlebar 2-06 (AET)
After annexing the Rannafast Cup on December, the Year 12 students of St. Colman’s College travelled as the Ulster representatives to Clonguish GAA grounds in Co. Longford on Saturday afternoon to take on the recently crowned Connacht champions from Castlebar.
Played on a heavy pitch, the College started very assertively and through the defensive dominance to Tony Magee and Jack Howlett were able to keep the westerners at bay for the first half of the game. In what was a fiercely contested half of football St.Colman’s were able build up a reasonable 0-4 to 0-1 lead at half time lead with scores from Ronan Fitzpatrick, Adam Crimmins, Oran McCafferty and captain Dan McCarthy. The second half started as intensely as the first and it was the Newry outfit who were to stretch their lead with points from a Crimmins free and a goal from Carrickruppen’s Oisin O’Hare. The Mayo men came roaring back into the game after this, with the aid of some sloppy play from the College defence were able to plunder two goals inside the space of five minutes. Points were exchanges and the game was level going into injury time. A Castlebar goal was ruled out due to an infringement and in the dying minutes both sides wasted clear cut chances to win the game; sending the tie into extra time.
With the exertions of the game seeming to take its toll more heavily on the College, Castlebar were able to pick off two points in the first ten-minute period of the additional time. However, some superb defensive play enabled the College to gain possession at corner back where Mayobridge’s Thomas Hardy started a superb move that swept the length of the field and culminated in his club mate Crimmins finishing low to the bottom corner of the net to send the large Newry support wild. The College were able to see out the last few minutes of the game and earn a hard earned place in the All-Ireland final. Best on the day for Colman’s were the midfield duo of Padraig Clancy and Crossmaglen’s Ronan Fitzpatrick, ably assisted by the defensive efforts of Peter McGrane, Callum Rodgers and Macdarragh Hynes.
St. Colman’s will now aim to become the first Ulster side to win this new competition when they play Leinster champions Mary’s Knockbeg (Laois) on Saturday 30th March.
Team: Conor Deery (Crossmaglen), Aaron Norris (Clonduff), Jack Howlett (Warrenpoint), Tony Magee (Burren), Ronan Campbell (Tullylish), Peter McGrane (Ballyhegan), Redmond French (Clann Eireann), Padriag Clancy (Clonduff), Ronan Fitzpatrick (Crossmaglen), Adam Crimmins (Mayobridge), Callum Rogers (Kilcoo), Dan McCarthy (Clann Eireann), Oisin O’Hare (Carrickruppen), Oran McCafferty (Clann Eireann), MacDarragh Hynes (Kilcoo).
Subs: Cormac McElroy (Liatriom), Thomas Hardy (Mayobridge), PJ Hughes (Ballyholland), Cian McAvoy (Annaclone)