Cumann na Mbunscol Champions
Cumann na mBunscol 2019
This year the Senior Boys were promoted to the Cumann na mBunscol Division 3 after winning Division 4 last year. In a group with Rathmore, Gaelscoil Chill Dara, Gaelscoil Ui Fhiach (Maynooth), Scoil Bhríde Naas, and St. Josephs Kilcock, the boys were up against some big schools with large numbers to choose from.
The first game against Rathmore in March saw a tight, tense affair that finished level after the second half but the referee allowed 5 extra minutes to decide a winner. Sean Mcloughlin and Joey Cunningham came up with 2 goals in the final few minutes to seal the win which proved to be crucial for our season. The following game saw us travel to Gaelscoil Chill Dara where we won by 6 points on a horrible day with wind and rain. Next up was Scoil Bhríde Naas in Allenwood and what a brilliant game of football it was with their manager commenting that he was sure we would meet again. Scoil Bhríde won by 8 points after a couple of late goals against us this time. We then travelled to Maynooth to take on Gaelscoil Ui Fhiach on another wet and windy day where we came out on top by 9 points. Our final game saw us paired against St. Josephs of Kilcock but they, unfortunately, could not field a team and forfeited the match to us meaning we advanced to the semi-final stage of the competition.
As group runners-up, we had to play the winners of the other side of Division 3 which included St. Peter's Monasterevin, Patrician Primary School and Milltown among others. Monasterevin came out as winners from that side with Patrician's as runners-up. The game was arranged for Kildare town and what a game of ball it would be. A blistering start for Allenwood saw a goal by Joey after just 3 minutes and another goal chance fizz just wide. We were 5 points up after 6 minutes and the early exchanges were going in our favour. Monasterevin however, would not lie down and got themselves right back into contention with a well taken goal of their own from their midfielder. There was rarely more than 2 points in it either way after that and with 5 minutes to go, we found ourselves 2 points down and with a free 13 yards out from their goal. Joey took the free and although he had time left to work another point scoring opportunity, he went for goal and blasted the ball into the back of the net! 2 points down to 1 point up going into the last few minutes of a nail-biting affair. Back came Monasterevin once more with wave after wave of attack and a goal line clearance from Nathan Jones and a brilliant save from Glen Moore kept them out. With a minute left of injury time, their midfielder was dragged down and he brought the game level for what must have been the 7th time. Extra-time was looming and all eyes were on the referee but back came Allenwood once more. Joey Cunningham, from what must have been outside the 45 metre line, with an absolute monster of a score. With two men on him, he swivelled and onto his favoured right boot and swung the ball high over the bar to bring his total for the day to 2-13! Their kick-out was taken and James Moore leaped highest to bring the ball under Allenwood control once more and with that came the final whistle and rapturous applause from both sets of supporters for what was a brilliant display of athleticism, skill and heart by both teams. Moorefield, Wednesday 29th of May against Scoil Bhríde, Naas was the reward for winning that game.
A rematch against the only team to have beaten us so far this year alluded to a lively affair between two good footballing teams who merited their places in this final. Allenwood, without the injured Cillian Byrne, came into the game buoyed by their semi-final win and immediately took the lead with scores from Joey and Will Carroll. Will got himself on the scoresheet again this time for a goal, to give us a 1-9 to 0-5 point lead at half time. Their had been a strong wind behind us in the first half and the mood at half time was that the game was still all to play for in the second half. Injuries to Nathan Jones and Sean Mcloughlin at the beginning of the second half forced some re-shuffling of the team but everybody kept their focus. Sam Swords in particular keeping the Scoil Bhríde threat to a minimum. Going forward, Sean O'Shea got himself a wonderful score to keep the scoreboard ticking over and keep a 7 point lead. Joey then scored a goal from a free kick that dropped short and in over the head of their keeper to give us a 10 point lead with 10 minutes to go. That would be our last score as Naas continuously tried to break through our rearguard. Luke Cross, Callum O'Reilly, Glen Moore, Aoife Stafford and Josh Moore thwarted attack after attack and the best Naas could muster was another 3 points in the second half when they desperately looked for goals. The final whistle eventually came and fantastic scenes with it as the boys celebrated a Division 3 County Title!
The Parish Cup
This year's Parish Cup was held in Milltown G.F.C. on a wet and blustery afternoon. The conditions didn't suit any team as the ball was near impossible to predict how it would it would hop off the wet turf. Milltown beat Allen in the first game of the day and we were next up to take on Robertstown. Not the prettiest of games with the players of both teams slipping and sliding but we had that little bit more composure than Robertstown and saw off their challenge by 2-11 to 0-01 with Ryan McManaman pulling the strings around the middle setting up a couple of goals.
The final against Milltown was similarly difficult to watch as the rain poured down and free kicks the only source of scoring opportunities for either team. Eventually though, Rachel Mcloughlin, Joey and Sean Mcloughlin all kicked great goals and we retained the Parish Cup! 4-08 to 1-04 the final score as the rain finally stopped, the players all congratulated each other and the boys all got the chance to talk to their friends from the other schools.
A big thank you to all the parents who helped with lifts, washing jerseys and supporting the team throughout the year. It has been another good year for GAA in Scoil Mhuire and hopefully it will live long in the memories of the players! Go raibh maith agaibh :)