Thirty-two students have been awarded sports scholarships at NUI Galway this week, bringing the total number of students receiving sports scholarships at the university to 60.
Recipients this year include Jennifer Byrne who was part of the Irish Women’s soccer team that reached the quarter finals of the FIFA World Cup this summer in Trinidad and Tobago, while Mervue United goalkeeper Gerard Hanley is among those to receive a soccer scholarship. Hanley, whose sister Marion is a past winner of a tennis scholarship, was recently called up the Irish u-21 squad.
Dean Higgins and Billy Lane, members of the Galway All-Ireland minor hurling winning team, were among those presented with hurling scholarships, while Joss Moore was part of the u-21 Galway football team that took this year’s All-Ireland title.
European junior silver medallist in kickboxing, Desmond Leonard, will be preparing for the World Championships later this year, while Heather Cary will be lining out for the Connacht and NUI Galway ladies’ rugby teams.
A number of the new scholarship holders will be targeting the 2016 and 2020 Olympics in their careers, including Kevin McGlade and Ruairí McGeever from swimming, Freddie Timmins in hockey and archer Darren Wallace.
Also presented at the ceremony were two Gaelic Football Scholarships sponsored by Cadbury’s for outstanding u-21 footballers. This year’s recipients are Gary Sweeney and Éinne Ó hEochaidh.
NUI Galway Sports Scholarships awardees: Rugby, Heather Cary from Ontario, Canada; Soccer, Gerard Cheevers from Carnmore; Jennifer Byrne from Athlone;Gerard Hanley from Barna; Joe Woods from Ballinasloe; Brian Gaffney from Salthill; Cian McBrien from Knocknacarra; Cian Fadden from Knocknacarra; Gaelic Football, Eilish Ward from Mountcharles, Co Donegal; Golf, Enda Cradock from Gort; Hockey, Freddie Timmins from Circular Road; Kickboxing, Desmond Leonard from Riverstown, Co Sligo; Swimming, Kevin McGlade from Knocknacarra; Swimming, Ruairí McGeever from Derrycastle, Co Tipperary; Basketball, James Brophy from Knocknacarra;Basketball, Kenneth Hansberry from Tuam; Basketball, Eabhnait Scanlon from Listowel, Co Kerry; Camogie, Chloe Morey from Sixmilebridge, Co Clare; Gaelic Football, Jason Doherty from Newport, Co Mayo; Greg Higgins from Tuam, Joss Moore from Mountbellew; Sean Moran from Claregalway; Hurling, Gerard O’Donoghue from Gort; Colm Galvin from Clonlara;Dean Higgins from Castlegar; Billy Lane from Kilcolgan; Rowing, Sean O’Connor from Daingean, Co Offaly; Cliona Hurst from Ballinasloe; Richard Bennett from Renmore; Archery, Darren Wallace from Portlaoise. Cadburys/ GAA U21 Football Scholarship, Gary Sweeney from Ballinasloe; Éinne Ó hEochaidh from Spiddal.