A bridge too far for St Mary’s

Leinster Junior Club Final

Moynalty 0-11

St Mary’s 0-05

Meath champions Moynalty proved too strong for Westmeath representatives St Mary’s Rochfortbridge when the sides met last weekend in the Leinster junior club final. Despite home advantage The Bridge never fully found their stride and only managed two points from play over the hour.

Moynalty’s solid defence laid the foundations for their success. Having led by five points to three at the interval they managed to hold the home side scoreless for the last 20 minutes, to run out surprisingly comfortable winners. Former Meath and Kildare star Cathal Sheridan inflicted most of the damage on St Mary’s, kicking six points in total.

While the Rochfortbridge outfit will be disappointed not to have added the Leinster title to their county championship title, they can now enjoy a well deserved break, and look forward to intermediate football in 2009.

The Saints go marching on

St Brigids 2-6

Elphin 0-4

It’s getting harder and harder to back to back titles together at any grade, and rarer yet to complete the hat-trick.That’s what makes St Brigid’s achievement in winning seven u-21 titles in a row all the more remarkable.

Frank Donnelly could call on almost the exact same team as defeated St Aidan’s to claim title number six twelve months ago. Not surprisingly his charges were warm favourites to retain their title and they didn’t disappoint in a game played in Baltic-like conditions in Ballyleague.

The Kiltoom boys were 0-5 to 0-1 to the good at the break and an early second half goal from Conor McHugh put them further in the driving seat. When Gearoid Cunniffe rattled the onion bag again in the 42nd minute it was game set and match for the green and reds.

David Nestor, Paddy Blaine, Peter Domican, and Niall Grehan were very much to the fore in a solid Brigids defence. The midfield partnership of Gilligan and Broughal got a good supply into the inside forwards. Up front Gearoid Cunniffe, Darren Dolan, the two McHughs, and Eoin Sheehy provided too much firepower for the Elphin defence.

This win is further evidence of the abundance of talent available at the Kiltoom club as they set out to regain the senior title in 2009. The pressure will also be on next years u-21 side to try and extend this remarkable winning streak.

Leinster A Colleges round-up

It was a busy week on the colleges front with the first round of the Leinster Colleges competition. Westmeath have no less than five schools ( Athlone Community College, Marist College, Moate CS, St Mary’s Mullingar, and St Joseph’s Rochfortbridge ) competing in the Colleges A competition, a statistic which very few counties in Ireland can match.

Indeed all five schools have strong sides this year which augers well for this year’s county minor side. Four of the five schools enjoyed opening round wins.

Colleges football is of course great preparation for county minor and many of those who go on to play at county senior level first come to prominence at schools’ level.

Athlone Community College 0-11

Athy 0-07

Reigning champions Athlone Community College got their defence of the title off to a winning start, with four points to spare over Athy. Without the services of several regulars including Ian Coffey, Eoin Grennan, Padraig Cunningham, and Stephen Relihan this could have been a banana skin for ACC, but in truth they were always in control.

Garvan Groughall with a haul of 0-6 (5f ) did most of the scoring for the Athlone boys. Their next outing will be towards the end of January. With a full panel to choose from, the reigning champions will make a bold bid to defend their title.

Moate CS 1-13

St Marys Academy, Carlow 2-05

A highly rated Moate CS outfit enjoyed a comfortable five point win over Carlow Academy. Ballycumber/Tubber’s Bernard Allen kicked an impressive 1-5 (0-1f ) for his side while Kieran Martin also proved a handful over the hour. With further improvement to come, Peter Tormey’s men have the potential to go far in this year’s competition.

Patrician Newbridge 0-11

Marist College 0-09

There was certainly a feeling of a missed opportunity in the Marist camp after this encounter as they were unlucky to lose out to a highly rated Newbridge outfit. Patrician Newbridge were crowned south Leinster league champions just a few short weeks ago but were pushed all the way by a determined Marist side. Indeed Marist enjoyed plenty of possession but found scores difficult to come by. With the back-door in operation they still have plenty to play for.

St Mary’s Mullingar 1-11

Knockbeg 0-08

St Mary’s faced a difficult opener with an away fixture against Knockbeg. The journey home was a sweet one for the Mullingar lads as they enjoyed a comfortable six point winning margin. Knockbeg were without the services of the injured Donie Kingston and this undoubtedly helped St Mary’s cause.

Best for St Mary’s were Tommy Barry, John Heshin, and Adam Corroon.

St Joseph’s Rochfordbridge 3-9

Colaiste Iosagain 2-4

Three first-half goals paved the way for North Leinster league champions St Joseph’s Rochfortbridge to advance to the second round of the championship. Leading by 3-5 to 1-2 at the interval, Cormac Davey’s men never looked in danger against last years all-Ireland ‘B’ champions. They now must wait to see who their opponents will be in round two which is pencilled in for late January.

Westmeath ladies team seeking new manager

The Westmeath ladies intermediate team are seeking a new team manager/trainer for the 2009 season. The current manager Kenny McKinley and his team, Pat Layde and Eoghan Kevlihan are now stepping aside after three seasons at the helm.

Kenny and his team have put in tremendous work developing the team over the three year period. His team made it to both the league final and Leinster final in 2007 and as a result were promoted to division 2A of the league.

The Westmeath ladies county board are inviting anyone interested in managing the intermediate team to contact them with relevant details to the following address: A Kerrigan, Slanemore, Mullingar, (0868262729 ) or email the Westmeath ladies secretary at [email protected]

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