St Brendan's Land 'A' Hurling League Title

Thursday, 6 April 2017

St Brendan's Land 'A' Hurling League Title thumbnailSt. Brendan's Community School Team

On Wednesday last, St. Brendan's Community School won the Leinster league with a hard fought victory over Coláiste Eoin, Dublin. In wintery conditions, with the wind blowing directly down the pitch in Dunganny, Meath, the Birr team held out in the second half to come out on top with five points to spare.

St Brendan's, Birr...1-9
Colaiste Eoin...0-7

St. Brendan's had heroes throughout the field and this was a complete team effort. St. Brendan's found themselves playing with the strong wind in the first half but showed some nerves in the first fifteen minutes hitting five wides and only finding themselves two points to one up, thanks to scores from Joseph Hoctor and Luke Nolan.

Coláiste Eoin got off the mark from a placed ball which would be their only score for the duration of the first half. St. Brendan's soon got into their rhythm and were the better team all over the pitch. The forwards were working hard and were soon given their just reward when Luke Carey scored the team's third point from a placed ball.

A brilliantly taken point from Niall Lyons gave the Offaly team a three point lead. Darragh McLoughlin and Niall Lyons worked tirelessly in the half forward line chasing and pressurising the Coláiste Eoin defenders who were finding it very tough to get the ball up the pitch.

Luke Carey was consistent from placed balls which proved very important and slotted over his second and the team's fifth. St. Brendan's defenders led by captain and fullback James Guinan and centre back Luke Nolan were solid in the first half and dealt with the few balls that came their way.

Emmet Rigney showed his strength and determination at full forward throughout the first half and created numerous chances for his teammates. The lively corner forward Joseph Hoctor proved a massive problem for the Coláiste Eoin defence throughout the game. His speed and accuracy rewarded him with two quick-fire points before the end of the first half to give Birr a six point lead at halftime.

St. Brendan's came out in the second half knowing they had a fierce battle ahead of them playing against the elements. Coláiste Eoin started the second half the stronger of the two teams and scored a great point from play not long after the ball was thrown in.

They followed up on this with three points from placed balls, and St. Brendan's found their six point lead slip to two. St. Brendan's had only managed to get the ball up the pitch once during this purple patch from Coláiste Eoin which resulted in a wide. Just as St. Brendan's were in desperate need of a score, the strong and skilful corner forward Martin Lawlor pulled on a loose ball around the square and secured Birr's all important goal and the Offaly team found themselves five points ahead.

Coláiste Eoin responded to this with their fifth point from a placed ball and sixth in total, keeping them right in the mix. The St. Brendan's defenders were under a lot more pressure in the second half, but dealt with anything that was thrown at them. Cian Burke showed skill and confidence at wingback and plucked the ball out of the air on numerous occasions while James Nolan, Jack Ormond and Cathal King were strong and solid and didn't give their opponents a second on the ball.

Goalkeeper David Tooher showed confidence and dealt with anything that came his way. Barry Smith and David Murray worked tremendously in the middle of the field and showed a high level of fitness along with skill during the game. Luke Carey scored his third and St. Brendan's eighth point of the day with another brilliantly taken free and they found themselves five points the better team once again.

Midfielder David Murray was rewarded for his hard work and determination for his team when he scored what would be St. Brendan's final point of the day with five minutes to go. For the first time in the second half, St. Brendan's had re-established a six point lead. Coláiste Eoin never gave up and scored their second point from play with three minutes to go.

This was the final score of the game, and St. Brendan's ran out deserving winners on a scoreline of 1-9 to 7 points. A delighted St. Brendan's Captain James Guinan who led by example all day collected the trophy on behalf of his teammates. St. Brendan's campaign is not finished for the year as this victory means that they now play Wexford side St. Peters in the quarter final of the A Championship.


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