Historic Hurling Cup for Glenstal

HISTORIC FIRST GAELIC GAMES CUP FOR GLENSTAL ABBEY SCHOOL

 

Having just earned their final place the day previous, the U16.5 hurling team were out again on Friday, December 8th, in the LIT Sports sponsored Coolderry Cup. On another very cold morning, the panel made their way to Mick Neville Park in Rathkeale where they would meet Coláiste Chiaráin of Croom in the decider. It wasn’t the first time these two sides met in the Limerick Post Primary School’s Competition. The year previous, Coláiste Chiaráin came out on top after a very strong second half performance in Harty Park, Murroe. Glenstal were hoping to take honours here with many of the players today also featuring in that game. Missing some players through injury, work experience and other commitments added to the tension from a Glenstal perspective but the panel of twenty readied themselves diligently so that they may be inducted into the history books.

 

Referee, Eamonn Phelan got proceedings under way shortly after half past ten and the battle commenced. No signs of tiredness were evident as Glenstal started with aplomb. A ball rescued from the end line by Ben McCartan was played into Aidan Booth who struck to the left hand side of the goalkeeper and into the net. It seemed as though this rattled Coláiste Chiaráin somewhat as Glenstal were able to add to their blistering start. Cian O’Farrell opened his account with a point before a long range effort from Darragh Hanly raised another green flag. Coláiste Chiaráin did respond with a pointed free before adding another from play. The Coláiste Chiaráin forwards were beginning to look very dangerous all of a sudden as the sliotar slipped in behind the Glenstal defence. The pacy Coláiste Chiaráin attack will possibly rue some chances in the first half where they could have goaled themselves. Two shots flashed across the goal before Angus McDonald had to block three other strikes on goal. Coláiste Chiaráin pointed again and it was evident that these sides were an even match. The score, at this time, in Glenstal’s favour; 2-1 (7) to 0-3 (3) courtesy of the goals.

 

Darragh Hanly pointed again before a scramble at the goal mouth saw the industrious Patrick Johnson goal with a flick of the hurl. Coláiste Chiaráin were tagging their own points all the while to keep in touch on the scoreboard and continued to threaten the goal behind Angus McDonald time after time. Somehow, McDonald and his defence held firm and didn’t concede a goal in this half. Blocks and clearances from the Angus McDonald and the Ryan-Prendiville brothers, Seán and Micheál, helping the cause as did the hard work of Darragh Butler, Robert McNamara and the entire half forward line. Cian O’Farrell carried many possessions away from the Glenstal goal which alleviated the pressure some more. He added another point himself when he rose and struck the ball in one action from the right hand side of the field. Patrick Johnson goaled again after a mazy run through the defence and, shortly after, Aidan Booth scored his second, and Glenstal’s fifth, goal of the half creating a sizeable lead but the spectators knew that they were fortunate at the other end not to have conceded.

 

Coláiste Chiaráin would finish the half with eight points but the pick of the points was scored by Darragh Hanly. Angus McDonald launched a puck out which dropped around the opposing 65 yard line. It was here, Hanly leaped and plucked the ball from the air and continued his run down the middle of the park. He slotted the score from about 35 yards out for what could only be described as a remarkable individual point. This left the half time score in favour of the men from the Glen; 5-4 (19) to 0-8 (8).

 

With the backs under a lot of pressure during the first half, but yet a sizeable lead, there was little change to be made other than how we could combat the assault on our goal. While, eleven points to the good, Glenstal knew their opposition were every bit as talented and able to score, but we had been more fortunate and clinical so far. The key was to ensure that didn’t change. A timely reminder of the previous year’s fixture, where Coláiste Chiaráin blew Glenstal off the park in the second half as well as the possibility of the Glenstal effort tiring were catalysts in resuming the second half effort. Glenstal pointed through the stick of Cian O’Farrell to continue the march towards honours. However, the Coláiste Chiaráin revival was given a kick start when their corner forward was played in on goal. He made no mistake in slotting the shot to the far corner and the seed of worry was planted.

 

O’Farrell, to be the only Glenstal scorer in the second half, pointed again in response before getting another opportunity from a placed ball. Every chance would count and O’Farrell duly obliged on this occasion. Coláiste Chiaráin ramped up their efforts again and had Glenstal under all sorts of pressure. Again, the defence held firm for a time. Angus McDonald, in possession, was running out of his parallelogram when a flick back of his hurley connected with the opposing player. Referee, Eamonn Phelan had no choice but to dismiss Angus McDonald with a straight red card and award Coláiste Chiaráin a penalty. Patrick Johnson made his way from centre forward to goals but couldn’t prevent the well struck penalty from hitting the net. Seán Ryan-Prendiville then manned the goals and Patrick Johnson joined the defensive efforts in an attempt to preserve the lead. For a time, they were under pressure but once they got the sliotar back up the pitch, they were able to add to their lead. Coláiste Chiaráin couldn’t capitalise on the man advantage enough to topple the Glenstal effort.

 

In the closing stages, the rampant Cian O’Farrell tagged on a further 2-3, bringing his personal tally to 2-7 for the day ensuring that the Coolderry Perpetual Cup would make it’s way up the Glenstal avenue for the first time in history. The final score, though a well deserved win, doesn’t give a true reflection to the effort the boys had to put in to defeat a very talented and committed Coláiste Chiaráin team. Well done to both sets of teams for putting on a fine display.

 

Final Score

Glenstal Abbey School 7-10 (31)

Coláiste Chiaráin 2-8 (14)

 

Match Day Panel: Angus McDonald, Henry Farrell, Seán Ryan-Prendiville, Micheál Ryan-Prendiville, Robert Burke, Robert McNamara, Charlie McCartan, Cian O’Farrell, Darragh Butler, Darragh Hanly, Patrick Johnson, Aidan Booth, Harry Whelehan, Seamus Kerrisk, Ben McCartan, Josh Kennedy, James Shields, Michael Franklin, Michael Buckley & John Walsh

 

Full Panel: Robert O’Grady, Daragh Butler, Cian O’Farrell, Darragh Hanly, Aidan Booth, Cormac Frawley, William Twomey, Josh Kennedy, Robert McNamara, Angus MacDonald, Henry Farrell, Robert Burke, Tom Rooney, Patrick Johnson, Ben McCartan, Charlie McCartan, John Walsh, Ben Shippam, Michael Buckley, Micheál Ryan Prendiville, Seán Ryan Prendiville, James Shields, Dermott Hughes, Michael Franklin, Harry Whelehan & Seamus Kerrisk.