Buccaneers host fellow promotion contenders Highfield in crucial AIL Division 1B fixture

Pictured at the sponsorship presentation by O’Leochain & Associates to Buccaneers U16’s squad are, l-r, David Dunning, Wesley Hudson, Kyle Byrne (U16’s captain), Pete Mahon, Diarmuid O’Leochain (sponsor), Karl Henson, Daithi O’Leochain and Paul Byrne.

Pictured at the sponsorship presentation by O’Leochain & Associates to Buccaneers U16’s squad are, l-r, David Dunning, Wesley Hudson, Kyle Byrne (U16’s captain), Pete Mahon, Diarmuid O’Leochain (sponsor), Karl Henson, Daithi O’Leochain and Paul Byrne.

Buccaneers take on fellow promotion contenders Highfield in their penultimate Energia All-Ireland League Division 1B home fixture at Dubarry Park on Saturday.

Victory for the Pirates will virtually guarantee the Athlone side of at least a place in the play-offs while the Corkonians will also be desperately striving for a win that will keep them very much in the hunt for a top four berth. Consequently, a vibrant and competitive battle is greatly anticipated when the action kicks off at 2.30pm.

When the teams met in Cork last October, the Midlanders edged a dogged contest 17-14 on a windy and wet afternoon. It could be as tight again this weekend. Highfield have tinkered with selections in their efforts to gain consistency and may not have found their best formation yet. However, they have quality players in Cian Bohane (used most recently at fullback ), lock Dave O’Connell, flyhalf James Taylor and Miah Cronin at No.8. So they will pose plenty of problems for the Shannonsiders.

Buccs will hope to have Frankie Hopkins and Saul O’Carroll back from injury although this game looks like coming too early for Shane Layden and Cian McCann. Danny Qualter, who was unavailable for the Bateman Cup final, will bolster the pack where Martin Staunton, Ruairi Byrne and Steveni Lombard will be key components

Buccaneers U16s advance in Connacht Cup

Buccaneers U16s made little of the over 200 miles winding round trip and foul weather on the western seaboard when overcoming Connemara-Oughterard 32-5 in the quarter-final of the Bank of Ireland Connacht Cup. They outscored the combination side by five tries to one at the rain-swept Monastery Field, Clifden, on Sunday.

With terrible wet and windy conditions to contend with, both teams were already soaked to the skin by the time the game kicked off. Buccaneers had the wind at their backs in the first half and, after some slipping and sliding on a water sodden pitch, they got an early penalty which Andrew Henson slotted between the posts. Over the next 20 minutes the teams were evenly matched with some good carries from both sides. With a few minutes to go before halftime Buccaneers were putting pressure on the hosts defence and forced a wayward pass which was intercepted by Kyle Mahon who raced over to score just past the post to leave a straightforward conversion for Henson to slot over.

It was 10-0 at halftime but the game was still very much in the balance. However, not long after the restart, some brilliant work from Stephen O’Connor, who stole the ball, broke the line and sprinted over from 40 yards, put 15 points between the teams. Buccaneers were now firmly on top and captain Kyle Byrne showed his class when he pounced on a loose ball, tucked it under his arm and left everyone watching as he ran home from 35 metres to score the Pirates third try. Conor McCormack was next to score for Buccs after some brilliant work by Brian Doyle who worked tirelessly throughout. Henson converted and the Athlone side were now 27-0 ahead.

Connemara/Oughterard had scored 62 points in the previous two rounds and their hard work and good play was rewarded with a well-deserved try with 5 minutes to go before Elliott Rooney-Digan crossed the line again for Buccs to ensure the win for Buccaneers on a final score of 32-5. The margin was harsh on the host side who really put it up to visitors, but thankfully Buccaneers march forward to a home semi-final against near neighbours Creggs on the weekend of April 1/2.

BUCCANEERS - A.Henson; D.Burke, E.McCormack, K.Mahon, M.Turner; B.Doyle, D.Lyons; I.Jocher, E.Rooney-Digan, D.O’Leochain; T.Mason, T.Trainor; S.O’Connor, C.McCormack and K.Byrne (captain ). Replacements:- A.McCormack, R.Fallon, C.Whitney, N.Chapel, P.O’Sullivan, S.Duffy, L.Marjanovic and M.O’Connor.

O’Leochain & Associates sponsor Buccaneers U16 Squad

Athlone accountancy firm O’Leochain & Associates are title sponsors of Buccaneers U16’s youths team.

At a recent match, Diarmuid O’Leochain, CEO, presented the Buccaneer’s squad with branded gear. He was proud and pleased to support the club and, in particular, its underage section. He wished the U16s continued success in their season.

Head coach to the squad, Paul Byrne, thanked O’Leochain & Associates for their generous and practical support. The young players were very grateful for their impressive and stylish gear. He hoped that the team would wear the attire with pride and success.

O’Leochain & Associates provide a range of accountancy, book-keeping and payroll services from their offices at Sean Costello Street, Athlone, where they tailor their services to suit the needs of their clients.

Vertice sponsor Buccaneers U11 Squad

Vertice, an Oracle Platinum Partner who provide specialist consulting services related to Oracle Solutions to reduce risk and ensure success in meeting your business needs using Oracle, presented a set of jerseys to Buccaneers U11 boy’s squad recently. The club gratefully acknowledges the generous sponsorship and support of Tony Cassidy and Vertice to the Buccs of the future. Thanks too to Connacht rising stars the Murray brothers Niall and Darragh who assisted at the presentation.


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