Cumann na mBunscol - Mixed fortunes for schools on opening day of Finals

By Hayden Moore

THERE were mixed fortunes for local primary schools on the opening day of the Cumann na mBunscol Áth Cliath finals in Croke Park on Monday.

The clash between Ballyroan BNS and Bishop Galvin NS for the Corn Marino saw the latter win out 4-8 to 1-15 after a tense encounter.

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Seán Óg O'Kelly of Bishop Galvin NS, Templeogue, clears his lines during the Corn Marino decider against Ballyroan BNS.

Captain Aedan Mostyn led by example as he struck 2-4 throughout, with his goals coming either side of half-time.

But it was half-forward Aaron Kerrigan who broke the deadlock when he raced in towards goal and drilled the ball past impressive Ballyroan ‘keeper Seán Atkinson.

Ballyroan captain Shane Mullarkey put on an inspired performance from midfield, splitting the posts on eight occasions and firing to the net.

With the introduction of Rory O’Shaughnessy relieving the pressure at the back and Seán Culliton hitting his stride tallying 0-7, Ballyroan seemed to be in cruise control until Mullarkey picked up a second yellow.

Liam Huggins was in his element on the Croke Park pitch, even cutting a line-ball over the bar before his teammate Killian O’Riordan rattled the net for a fourth time to bring the Corn Marino home to Templeogue.

It was third time lucky for Scoil Treasa as they outpointed St Mary’s Booterstown by 1-19 to 1-10 to capture the Corn Herald.

After losing out in their previous two finals in Croke Park, the Firhouse side showed some great point-taking ability this time round with Fiachra Codd inflicting the bulk of the damage.

Despite Booterstown hitting a hefty score, Treasa’s were dominant all over the park with Alex Dunne pointing three times from centre-back and Liam Dargan mopping up a lot of high balls.

St Mary’s made a surge in the second-half to reduce the deficit to just four points before Darragh Delaney pulled on a loose ball for a goal after some nice build-up play with Marven Chan and Rían Mention.

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Fiachra Codd of Scoil Treasa, Firhouse, keeps his eye on the ball as he launches an attack against St Mary's BNS in the Corn JMOB Final.

Lucan sides had a tough day as both Lucan Educate Together and St Mary’s BNS were both pipped in their respective finals.

In the earlier throw-in for the Corn Herald Final, Mary’s were put to the sword by Belgrove and would have had it lost by the break had it not been for the heroics of shotstopper Freddy Haran, who produced a string of top-drawer saves.

Westmanstown Gaels ace Senan Bolger netted, but they were still struggling and trailed 1-2 to 0-8 by the break.

Sons of ex-Dublin footballer Paul Curran, Marc and Sam, were solid while Callum Morris cut-out a lot of danger at half-back and with minutes left to play, Mary’s had reduced the margin to two points.

Luke Mooney, Killian Costello and Reece Kelly all registered scores, but when Belgrove found a way past the brilliant Haran, there was too little time for a comeback.

In the later throw-in, Lucan ET were undone by a powerful Scoil Santain who won their third Cumann na mBunscol title in a row after a 3-6 to 2-4 win that brought with it the Corn Pádraig Mac Giolla.

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Killian Costello of St Mary's BNS, Lucan, goes for a point during his side’s encounter with Belgrove Senior BNS, Clontarf, in the Corn Herald title match at the Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Finals 2019 at Croke Park on Monday.

It took the midfield partnership of Eoghan Ó Braonáin and Jack Ó Conghaíle to unlock the tricky Lucan defence fronted by joint-captain Alisha Khan.

But it was Lucan who drew first blood after they hit a rapid-fire 1-2, with co-captain Oscar Brennan firing over the blackspot from long-range.

Brennan was enigmatic in midfield as he linked the backs and forwards together seamlessly, while  Ó Braonáin tallied 1-2 from play.

With the side’s inseparable by the break, Santain came out guns blazing, Thomas Davis’ Ó Conghaíle hitting a pile driver to the net from 30-yards.

Lucan netminder Thi Kearney stopped the opposition advances several times and the sides were once again neck and neck heading into closing minutes.

With Lee Ó Braonáin now operating well as a sweeper and a 1-1 salvo from Tadhg Ó Ceallaigh, it saw the Tallaght side get their hands on the cup.

In another all-local encounter, this one for the Corn Fintan Walsh, Scoil Chrónáin players put in a huge shift all over the park to beat Lucan ET 6-5 to 2-1.

Chloe O’Shea led by example, covering every blade of grass to try get an edge over their Rathcoole opponents while Cáit Ni Shuill-eabháin put on a similar display down the other end of the pitch.

But Gracie Gregg, Dabhína Strumble and Sadhbh Breathnach started to ease into the match and caused Lucan some serious problems with their direct running and scoring ability.

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Eoghan Ó Braonáin, captain of Scoil Santain, Tallaght, raises the Corn Pádraig Mac Giolla Bhearraigh after he led his side to a hard-fought victory over a very strong Lucan Educate Together team.

Despite the best efforts of Leah O’Byrne, Ellen McSweeney and Elisha Khan, who had played in the earlier mixed-boys final, the side could not make enough of an impact to rival the goal-scoring power that the Rathcoole girls possessed.

Ella Ní Lochlainn hit them for two further goals although Lucan’s frontline persisted, but whenever they found a way through, the ever-impressive Rebecca Ni Lochlainn was there between the posts to snuff out most of their efforts.

In what was one of the opening games of the 2019 competition, St Mary’s NS in Saggart contested a hurling final for the first time, but were pipped 2-2 to 3-1 at the death by Scoil Ghráinne in the Sciath Sean Ó Rinn showpiece.

Emile Abulu was instrumental in getting Mary’s out of the traps early on, kicking a goal to see his side 1-0 up heading into the break.

Round Tower’s club player Molly Crowther set up two goals from midfield with Ilya Bebnakovs nabbing the second before Abulu had a third disallowed for a square ball.

With the Saggart side just a goal behind in the closing minute and Luke Kinsella standing over a close-range free, his shot was the last púc of the game but travelled just the wrong side of the crossbar.

Presentation PS Terenure were under the cosh from early on against Mount Anville and eventually succumbed to the pressure as the Kilmacud side won out 5-4 to 4-1 for the Corn Olly Quinlan.

Robyn Carlyle was excellent between the sticks for the Terenure girls with a Helen Duignan goal and free keeping them in touch with their opponents heading into the recess.

Emma Ryan demonstrated some classy hooking and blocking skills while Duignan and Hannah Galvin chalked up further scores for their side.

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