Southern Gaels club notes

October 01, 2019

Southern Gaels Club Notes 

U12s Finish With Another Win 

Well done all the U12s on a great performance last Friday evening in our comfortable win over Brigids. We have a great bunch of lads going into next season with all of the team having improved over the year and some excellent new members who have really given us a boost. U14’s is a more serious proposition, but we have no doubt the older ones will be well able to knuckle down and make a good account of themselves in due course. On behalf of the mentors, a big thanks to all players and parents for giving their time, energy and support over the year. 

Southern Gaels lose to Clonkill in U17s Championship Semi Final 

Rome was not built in a day and neither was the Roman Empire, but the ambition for each aspiration has to begin somewhere, and the desire for reaching the Holy grail of Hurling was very evident at the match and the first steps were definitely taken on the path to reach the top table of Hurling in the county. Clonkill, current Senior Champions were the opposition and they travelled with a panel of 27 hurlers, of which a lot are county hurlers, and if not have certainly been on a panel in their day. The last Senior Hurling title that was won by a team from Athlone was in 1912, which is a staggering 107 years ago with a man called John Martin captaining the side. Coincidentally, the U14s played their club tournament for a Cup named in his honour, with some of his family tree captaining that team, John Martin also from Clonbonny and he was also on the team and scoresheet for the day.  

So hopefully there will be some historic connection in the future when the senior title returns to Athlone, as the road to the Roman Empire was set out upon, with the ambition of these players. It was also a milestone for the club to be able to field at this level with a special mention to the 17s who put their shoulder to the wheel for the cause. We might have been well beaten on the score board, but we were punching way above our weight and we were certainly not found wanting for effort from start to finish. Each and every player involved can hold his head high, the club, mentors and supporters couldn't have been happier with the effort and attitude – and it’s that attitude change that sets us on the right road to reach our ambition. 

U16s Reach Semi-Final 

As they say, no sooner does one door close than another one opens, and this is the big one for the club! After the disappointment of the U17 loss it is great to announce we have qualified for the U16 Division 2 Hurling Championship semi-final after finishing 3rd in the group. We now play the 2nd placed team (probably Fr Daltons). The fixture is yet to be confirmed but will probably be the weekend of 12th/13th October. What a great way to finish out the year and with the right commitment we could well add more silverware to our new cabinet. Gaels Abú! 

Southern Gaels Vs Drumraney  

Páirc Chiaráin was a hive of activity last Tuesday as Southern Gaels took on local camogie club Drumraney in an end of season U8 and U10 friendly. The U10 high hurling match was of a very high standard with points and goals aplenty for both teams showing the results of a season of training and blitzes. The U8s played a game of ground hurling with the ball pinging from one end of the pitch to the other. Both clubs now start to wind down the outdoor seasons and it was brilliant to get this opportunity to play each other. 

Our academy boys and girls played 3 mini matches against Drumraney, where a grand total of 47 children took part. The energy and enthusiasm as well as the genuine improvement of all our players is uplifting for everyone in Southern Gaels. Another fine evening’s entertainment brought a close to our outdoor season for the Academy. We will have a block of 6 weeks indoor training in the Marist Sports Hall, starting in mid-October. We'll advertise in due course. Thank you to all the parents and children for your support for our hurling club. 

U14s beat St Dominic’s to win John Martin Cup 

Southern Gaels claimed the John Martin Cup for the second time in its club history, in great style last Tuesday night with a super team performance over near rivals St. Dominic’s from Roscommon. The sides had previously met earlier in the season with St Dominic’s coming out on top, so it was never going to be easy. Dominic’s had also won the Division 10 Feile Shield in Kilavullen on the Day the Gaels los the Cup final. From the throw in, the Gaels intensity was immense and relentless and I think the opposition were a bit surprised, with some of the precision passing, tackling and teamwork leading them to some excellent scoring opportunities.  

Southern Gaels had a large panel of 25 players on the night and were not shy in introducing the subs early on to reward all the hard training and effort by the full panel which makes the team, the standard of what they are collectively. The Gaels put up a good target for St Dominic’s to come back at in the second half and that they did with some super battling of their own. It was an entertaining evening’s hurling and brings to a close the Hurling Season for the U14s – a very notable season for the History books of the Club, with League victory and Féile and near championship success – but it’s the success of the team mates to create such a panel of friends and comrades is the real success – Team Mates, they’ll have forever. 

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