Sunday was a day Ballyshannon Gaels had waited over a decade for, and full credit to the men in white and green, they didn't disappoint. Aodh Ruadh simply had too much for Four Masters in every department in this game. In glorious sunny conditions Ballyshannon took the initiative early on and never relinquished it. They lead by five points at the first water break and had extended that out further to eight as Jimmy White whistled for half-time. Aodh Ruadh had been threatening to raise a green flag for much of the game, and when the outstanding Nathan Boyle hit the net on 38 minutes it was effectively game over. There was 15 points between them at the last water break, and such was Aodh Ruadh's stranglehold the hosts only managed their first score from play in the 49th minute. The final 15 minutes were played out with Aodh Ruadh perhaps already turning one eye to the visit of Naomh Conaill to Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh next week. It finished Aodh Ruadh 1-21 Four Masters 0-10. It was very much a team display from Aodh Ruadh with every man taking care of their assigned tasks with diligence and dash. Nathan Boyle's display was well worth €10 of anyone's money. Conor Patton's bottomless lungs are a fright to behold at times. Eddie Lynch and Kyle Murray were very stylish at half back. Philip Patton's reliability was complimented by Mark McGlynn's appetite for hard work and willingness to offer a passing or shooting option. Shane McGrath roved the final third to great effect too. The subs all contributed well on their introduction too. We have a full match report and pictures from the game up on aodhruadh.org.
The tables were turned in the reserve fixture where Four Masters ran out 4-12 to 1-7 victors. Aodh Ruadh had made a reasonably good fist of things in the first half with a four-point tally from Diarmaid McInerney seeing the score board read Four Masters 1-10 Aodh Ruadh 0-6 at the interval. In the second half though it was one way traffic, and while Kerry Ryan did strike for an early goal, the lion's share of the scoring action was up the other end of the pitch as it finished 4-12 to 1-7. Despite the goal concessions Mark Gallagher had a good game, Odhran McGarrigle got through a lot of work and veteran Dermot Slevin never gave up the fight. We have a gallery of pictures from the game up on aodhruadh.org.
Next up is the visit of Naomh Conaill to Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh this Sunday. The senior game throws in at 2pm and is followed by the reserve fixture at 3.30pm. It would be great to see a big showing of support up for both teams.
The minors put in a battling performance on the road at Naomh Conaill last Friday. A claustrobhic first half during which defences were on top saw the scores at 0-3 to 0-1 in favour of the homesters at half-time and not many in attendance at Davy Brennan Memorial Park would have forecast the final scoreline was to come. Naomh Conaill came flying out of the traps in the second half sending over two early scores from distance before engineering a well worked goal from a tight angle to leave the scores at 1-5 to 0-2. Shortly after Aodh Ruadh went down to 14 men and Naomh Conaill scored the resulting free to leave it at 1-6 to 0-2 with it all to do for the Ballyshannon lads. To their credit, Aodh Ruadh didn’t let their heads drop and began to chip away at Naomh Conaill’s lead with Shane Delahunty and Damian Weber sending over a couple of magnificent left-footed efforts to kick-start the fight back. Aodh Ruadh continued to chase the game putting the Glenties kick-out under pressure and gaining momentum through further scores from Cian McKenna and Jack Gallagher which was only interrupted by a solitary Naomh Conaill point on the counter attack. With three minutes remaining Aodh Ruadh’s pressure finally reaped rewards as they deservedly drew level at 0-10 to 1-7. Unfortunately, playing almost an entire half with 14 men meant space would inevitably appear late on as Ballyshannon chased the game and Naomh Conaill broke for a late goal and a point off the resulting kick out. Again, though, Aodh Ruadh responded with Darragh Dolan weaving through a congested Naomh Conaill rear guard to slam home to the top corner. The final word would go to the Glenties men however as they profited from a long kick-out and despite Aaron Cullen’s best efforts the ball rebounded off the post across the face goal for an easy Naomh Conaill tap in. It ended Naomh Conaill 3-9 Aodh Ruadh 1-10. There was some excellent football played by Aodh Ruadh in the second half led by Ryan Keenaghan who was outstanding at full back, Shane Delahunty gave an exhibition in midfield along with Damian Weber who hit three crucial scores from distance. Credit also to Aidan Sweeny who again gave a solid display in the half back line and is developing into a very promising defender.
The week previous Aodh Ruadh had ran another big gun close when it finished 1-5 to 0-9 against Termon in Munday's after a hard fought contest. It wasn't a day for flowing football with wet conditions making for difficult handling. Nevertheless Aodh Ruadh have got off to the perfect start when they raced through on goal, but Damian Weber's shot was well saved. As the sides went in at the first water break it was all square at two points apiece. By the the interval the scoring hadn't advanced much further, thanks in part to two outstanding saves from Aaron Cullen. With Jack Gallagher and Damian Weber taking some nice points it was 0-5 to 0-4 in favour of Termon, and the game was very much up for grabs. The Aodh Ruadh defence were superb all evening, but at times the last pass didn't reach its destination and the Ernesiders just coughed up too many turn overs in the final third. Working on the counter, Termon started to pull away into 0-9 to 0-4 lead. An Aodh Ruadh point cut the deficit, and then with time nearly up the hosts won a kick out up the field and Danny Breen Brosnan got on the end of the move to slot the ball into the bottom left hand corner. Aodh Ruadh won the next kick out and all players pushed up the field, including keeper Aaron Cullen. The lads played the ball intelligently as they tried to work a score, but Termon managed to win one last turn over and with that the referee blew the final whistle.
The Aodh Ruadh under 15s have had a busy week with two games over the seven days. Last Tuesday they were in Killybegs, with the hosts taking the spoils on a scoreline of 2-10 to 1-3, a scoreline which only tells half the story. Despite travelling with low numbers Aodh Ruadh lead by two points in the second half and the Fishermen were only able to make their deeper bench count in the final ten minutes when they pulled away. Killian McPhelim capped a good outing for the Ernesiders with a well-deserved goal on the night. On Monday evening the squad were on the road again, but came up short against a very strong Four Masters outfit who prevailed 4-12 to 1-7. Once again Corey Sheridan did very well between the sticks, saving a number of certain goals. Out the field Eoin Doogan did very well defensively, while Darragh Summerville gave his all in the middle of the park.
Our under 11 boys are training on Mondays from 6pm to 7pm in Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh. This Thursday the squad will be taking on Bundoran and Naomh Bríd in Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh. All players are to be up for 5.30pm.
The under 9s had their final game of the season on Saturday in a very competitive outing against Ardara. We had 38 boys getting game time over three matches. The final training session of the year will take place on Friday evening at 6.15pm. There will be a presentation of medals afterwards. All parents welcome. Once again, best wishes to the boys who are making their First Holy Communion this Saturday.
Letterkenny Gaels conceded their scheduled tie with Aodh Ruadh on Friday, and so Ballyshannon are now into the last four of the Donegal Junior Championship. Congratulations to the team and management on securing a semi-final place. They now await the outcome of the remaining games in the round robin stages to learn their opposition.
Our under 17s had their final league match of group stages when they faced up to Carndonagh in the Donegal Centre of Excellence in Convoy. Our boys won out on a score line of 2-14 to 2-4 and will now face Saint Eunan's in their League final decider. The date and venue for that has yet to be confirmed.
The under 15s are training at their usual times this week as they step up their preparations for our league semi-final against Saint Eunan's provisionally fixed for Thursday, 30th September, but with the evenings getting darker this may change to a weekend. Training continues on Tuesday at 6.30pm and Thursday at 6.15pm.
The under 13s are celebrating another fantastic win. This week the opposition was Carndonagh in the Donegal League decider. In what was a tight battle from the outset, our lads held a narrow lead throughout the first half. Ballyshannon had some excellent performances right throughout the team and made a few changes as the second half wore on. We kept the score board ticking over into the third quarter with some great point scoring, however as the half wore on and Carndonagh tired, we finished the game as a contest with a brace of goals. A top-class team performance and a final score of 3-10 to 0-6. Next up for this fine team is their championship semi-final, where, by the luck of the draw, they will face Carndonagh again.
Our under 11 panel trained together for the second time enjoyed a fantastic morning of hurling. Ulster GAA coach and Hurling Development Officer Declan Sherlock spent some time working with our under 11s and emphasised the importance of coaching FUNdamentals at this age group. He took our lads for a session on coaching, how to strike from the hand and all of our younger players found it hugely beneficial. Training continues this Sunday morning at 11.45am, so if there are any other under 11 players that want to take up hurling contact John Larkin on 086-1076883.
Declan Sherlocks visits Aodh Ruadh
On Sunday morning we welcomed Declan Sherlock, Ulster GAA coach and Hurling Development Officer. We started the morning with Declan observing our session, before moving into Declan taking the lads for a couple of exercises. Declan had great things to say about this team and particularly commented on their work rate and application. All of our boys found it very enjoyable, and Declan even had a few pointers for Paul, Daithi and PO after the session.
The reserves flew the flag for the adult ladies in championship last week as they took on Malin in Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh on Sunday. They put in a battling display, but it wasn't enough to get the better of an Inishowen outfit who just had that wee bit too much on the day. As the sides felt each out in the first quarter, Abi Barrett opened the scoring with a fine point, which was soon followed by lovely effort from Sarah Daly. Unfortunately, good keeping denied Ballyshannon a couple of early goals and it was Malin who lead by a point at the first water break. A green flag was raised on the restart, but unfortunately it was for the girls in amber and black. Malin added a point, but Aodh Ruadh continued to work well and points from Sarah Patton and Abi Barrett meant the game was very much in the melting pot at the turnaround, Aodh Ruadh 0-4 Malin 1-4. It was Malin who pushed on after the break though, hitting an unanswered 2-5 which effectively sealed the result. This Ballyshannon side certainly don't want for character though, and they dominated the final quarter, the superb Sarah Patton raided up for two well-taken points before cutting through the dense Malin defence to smash a shot at goal. Her effort was well saved, but the alert Fódhla Sheerin pounced on the loose ball and smashed to the net for a richly deserved goal. Ciara Gillespie then tagged on a point and a free as Aodh Ruadh finished the game with their tails up. It finished Aodh Ruadh 1-8 Malin 3-11. Sarah Patton and Kate Cunningham both left everything on the pitch. Megan McGee excelled in the defence, while young subs Dairín Sweeny and Fódhla Sheerin both made great impacts off the bench.
The championship action continues next Sunday. The seniors host Saint Eunan's in Park Aoidh Ruaidh while our reserves are on the road to Burt. Both games throw in at 11am.
Our under 12 Girls played their final league game against a determined Naomh Ultan side at home on Wednesday. Aodh Ruadh had the better of the exchanges in the first quarter, but Naomh Ultan pulled it back approaching half time. The last two quarters were nip and tuck, however Aodh Ruadh always maintained their lead. It was a great game to finish off the season with all 26 girls playing their part and four others unavoidably absent. The girls have trained hard all season with consistently high numbers and deserve great credit for their commitment.
The under 10 season will be wrapping up with an in-house tournament being staged this Tuesdays and next Tuesday at Coláiste Cholmcille. Throw-in times will be at 6.15pm on both evenings. There will be a trophy and medals for the winners with goodie bags for all the participants.
The club extends our sympathies to the family and friends of Niall McQuillan of Bundoran who passed away on Monday. Niall starred with the all-conquering Ballyshannon Bundoran combination Saint Joseph’s in the 1970s.
The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Aodh Ruadh club has been set for Sunday, 21st November. Nomination papers and motion forms will be circulated to all current club executive committee members in due course. Any other club members looking for forms should email [email protected] The deadline for return of nominations and motions is Friday, 29th October. Nominations are being sought for Health and Well-being Officer.
The Bord na nÓg AGM will take place on Tuesday 2nd November. Nominations being sought for the positions of Chairperson and Secretary. These should be submitted [email protected] by Friday, 22nd October.
All sub-committees should have arranged to have held their AGMs by Sunday, 7th November. All sub-committee reports should be sent to club secretary Lisa McTernan by Friday, 12th November.
Father Tierney Park redevelopment
Good progress is being maintained on this major project with the base for the new playing field and a substantial part of the drainage system taking shape. We encourage anyone interested in viewing the project to use the safe viewing area which we have provided for this purpose. To help with the administration of the Sponsor a Sod campaign sellers are asked to make returns regularly and as soon as possible to Tom Daly, Michael Daly or David McLoone.
Sponsor A Sod. How do to do it and who to contact
To fund the development at Father Tierney Park, Aodh Ruadh have launched one of their biggest fund-raising efforts in decades, asking the public to ‘Sponsor A Sod’ at €50 each to help meet the costs of this ambitious plan. A permanent display bearing the names of donors will be erected in a prominent position at the Park. More than 25 Aodh Ruadh club members have joined the working group to actively promote this fund-raising campaign and to sell sods. The working group is as follows: Sabrina Brosnan, Michael Daly, Sarah Daly, Tom Daly, William Doogan, Gerard Ferguson, Conal Gallagher, Johnny ‘Mannix’ Gallagher, Paul Gillespie, Jim Kane, Donagh Keon, Diarmaid Keon, Patsy Kilgannon, John Larkin Jr, Dinny Loughlin, Sylvester Maguire, Brian Murray, Val Murray, Mick McGrath, Packie McGrath, Pat McGrath, David McLoone, Philip McLoone, Pauric McShea, David O’Donnell, Sean O’Mahoney, Barry O’Neill, John Patton and Gregory Sweeney.
Please contact any of the following if you wish to volunteer: Tom Daly (087-2390410), David McLoone (087-7760172), Philip McLoone (086-4053008), Conal Gallagher (086-2112812), Patsy Kilgannon (087-2372128), or Michael Daly (086-9171949).
Those living away from Ballyshannon, whether in Ireland or across the world, should note that they can purchase sods, and little bit of club immortality, on Klubfunder.com. Any questions or enquiries can be sent to [email protected]
For further information on any aspect of the Sponsor A Sod please contact the Aodh Ruadh Park / Development Committee officers - Tom Daly (087-2390410), David McLoone (087-7760172), Philip McLoone (086-4053008), Conal Gallagher (086-2112812), Patsy Kilgannon (087-2372128), or Michael Daly (086-9171949).
Our boot exchange programme is now up and running. Anybody who wants to exchange boots going forward, please text Packie McGrath on 087-9794696.
Old hurleys home
A number or parents have kindly donated hurleys and helmets that are no longer in use. If you have any hurls and helmets you would like to see used, please let us know and we will put them back into use.
Aodh Ruadh lotto
There was no winner of last week's Aodh Ruadh Lotto jackpot of €2,800. The winning numbers drawn were 2, 6, 8, 10, 13 and 18. In the lucky dip cash prizes of €25 went to Eugene Perry and James Deery, Belleek. The next draw is for a jackpot of €2,900 on Sunday at 9pm. Tickets are available in Kernan's Spar and Pearse O'Neill's. You can play also play the lotto online. Log onto klubfunder.com and then search for and select Aodh Ruadh Ballyshannon. Users can now avail of the auto-renew option to play the same line every week until they decide to stop when they pay using Stripe. Give it a go, you never know!
The lotto team for McCosker’s Centra on Saturday is: SENIOR HURLERS.