Markey Cup Winners
Dean Maguirc Carrickmore 3-8 Coláiste Cholmcille Ballyshannon 1-10
History was made at Roslea on Wednesday evening when Dean Maguirc Carrickmore won the Ulster Schools Markey Cup for the first time in their history with a deserved four point win over Coláiste Cholmcille Ballyshannon.
It was a superb game of football played on a perfect surface between two well drilled sides. The winners grabbed goals either side of halftime and while their opponents battled back the Dean were able to keep their noses in front. Dean keeper Kilian Kerr was called into action in the opening seconds to save well from Anton Govorov while he also blocked two follow ups as well. Kevin Cuddy opened the scoring before Sean Og Teague doubled Dean’s advantage but by the 11th minute the sides were level thanks to efforts from Aongas Sweeney and Ryan Barrett.
The Dean though were enjoyed a purple patch with Michael Rafferty, Pierce Byrne, James McCallan, Ronan Fox, Teague, Davagh Loughran and Aidan Woods all to the fore and efforts from Teague and Woods (2) moved them 0-5 to 0-2 in front. They missed a number of chances though and that allowed their opponents to reduce the deficit to the minimum with points from Jack Gallagher and Barrett. In the final attack of the first half though midfielder McCallan surged through and gave keeper Aaron Cullen no chance with a thumping shot to the top left hand corner of the net to leave it 1-5 to 0-4 at the break.
Things got even better for Dean Maguirc in the first attack of the second half when Woods finished in style to the bottom right hand corner of the net to give them a firm grip on proceedings. Loughran tagged on a point and at this stage it looked as though the Dean would assume complete control. The Donegal lads though had other ideas and a brace of points from Kyle McNulty was followed by a brilliant goal from Govorov in the 38th minute to leave just a single score between the sides.
Gallagher then reduced the gap to two and the momentum appeared to have turned until the Dean reasserted themselves. Mickey Joe McGlinchey got a vital point for he winners and that was quickly followed by a quality score from distance from Cuddy. With eight minutes to go substitute Callum Stewart gave the Dean some breathing space with their third goal. That proved to be their last score but they had done enough. Gallagher kicked a brace of points before being sent off while McNulty registered again but the night belonged to Dean Maguirc as they secured a fabulous and well deserved win.
Loch an Iuir Cup Winners
Dean Maguirc College claimed the Loch an Iuir Cup on Friday afternoon at Garvaghy following a 1-15 to 3-6 win over a hotly fancied Abbey Vocational School side from Donegal. The beaten finalists scored two goals from the penalty spot deep in injury time which gave the scoreline the appearance of a close game.
The Dean began well working hard as a unit to deny their opponents time and space on the ball with Ciaran Mc Crystal and Sean Og Harte outstanding. They were a yard quicker to the ball particularly in defence while up front the forwards were a threat every time the ball was played inside.
Points from Sean Donnelly (2) and Vincent Gormley (2) put the Dean four points clear inside eight minutes. Abbey then hit the net with a fine goal from Daire Slevin before a point on thirteen minutes from Tomas Carr tied the game. Gormley, Michael Mc Callan and Daniel Heagney added points for the Dean to put the Tyrone school three clear with seventeen minutes of the first half gone.
Abbey responded with a point from Thomas Lenehan but a minute later Vincent Gormley sent over his fourth point of the first half as the Dean kept their opponents at arm’s length with half time only minutes away. Lenehan replied for Abbey before Marcus Conway scored a fantastic individual goal that was worthy of winning any final. That goal put Dean five clear and in pole position but Abbey showed they were far from out of the contest with the final two scores of the first half from Thomas Mc Hugh and Gethin Mosby to go in at the break behind by three
Half time score : Dean Maguirc 1-8, Abbey Vocational School 1-5.
The first ten minutes of the second half saw defences on top. Abbey upped the ante as they sought to close the gap but they found a resolute Dean defence in no mood to yield.
Dean Maguirc weathered the storm and then hit six points in a row between the forty first and fifty fifth minutes displaying some exceptional teamwork built on hard work and commitment. A converted free from Lenehan with three minutes remaining gave the Donegal side their first score of the half but Vincent Gormley responded for the Dean to hit his sixth point of the contest and virtually seal the title.
Two converted penalties from the boot of Tomas Carr deep in injury time put something of a gloss on the final score but there was no doubt the Dean were deserving winners. Final score Dean Maguirc College 1-15, Abbey Vocational School 3-6
Sean Donnelly 0-3, Vincent Gormley 0-6, Brayden Mc Nally 0-1, Micheal Mc Callan 0-1, Daniel Heagney 0-1, Marcus Conway 1-0, Phelim Mc Crory 0-1, Lorcan Meenagh 0-2,
Rafferty Cup Winners
Dean Maguirc College 1-11 St Pius X, Magherafelt 1-10
After 2 games and 2 periods of extra time, only the minimum separated ourselves and St Pius X at the Final of the Rafferty Cup in Stewartstown on Saturday.
There was little between the two well drilled sides, with the Dean boys deserving the success on the day. Our team started with the same 15 from the drawn game, but it was the positional switches that the management deployed at the second time of asking that went a long way towards winning the game.
Team captain Micheal McCann led by example with an inspirational display at corner back. Oran Toal was moved to the 40 and caused havoc every time he gained possession, while Sean Conneely and Packie Quinn were also to the fore for the team.
St Pius more than played their part in a thrilling encounter with players Ryan Laverty, Michael Forbes and Aaron Donnelly being their best players on the day.
Scores proved difficult to come by in the third quarter. An unfortunate Cathair Kelly was off due to a black card offence just shortly before St Puis became level. A great response from Sean Conneely and Oran Toal responded with converted frees before Lorcan McGarrity eased a 3 point lead with 8 minutes to go. A minute later and the ball was in the bottom corner of the net for St Puis X. The Dean boys dug deep with Packie Quinn placing Zak Devine for the lead point before Oral Toal weighed in with his fourth of the day.
The final whistle marked a third ulster schools’ title in a row for this group of players, all the more remarkable as this group of players have moved up a grade in each of the 3 seasons. A thrilling game of football from both sides with a well deserved result in the end. Special congratulations has to be said to the coaches Enda Kilpatrick and Terry McCann who have worked hard with this young team.
Daniel McCrory, Micheal McCann, Conor Cuddy, Cahir McAnespie, Caolan Meenagh, Packie Quinn 1-0, Cathair Kelly, Sean Conneely 0-2, Tiarnan Teague 0-1, Zak Devine 0-1, Oran Toal 0-4, David Morris, James Donaghy 0-1, Lorcan McGarrity 0-1, Michael Rafferty 0-1
Subs: Michael McElduff for James Donaghy, Donal Sweeney for David Morris, Ruiari Dobbs.