St Patrick’s GAC Saul Notes

Senior men – next game is a crucial match away to Bosco this Saturday evening. Throw-in at 5pm. This is the lads penultimate league game and a must win game. All support is welcome, so lets all get there and get behind them writes Mark McGrath.

U-16 Boys – played Ballyholland last Thursday at the pitch and were defeated. The boys allowed Ballyholland to get away from them at the start and thereafter it was always an uphill struggle to peg them back. The management were delighted with the way in which the boys never gave up, and indeed, but for a couple of unfortunate errors, they could have found themselves much closer.

[caption id="attachment_42023" align="alignleft" width="390"]The U-10's with the Neil Thompson Cup. The U-10’s with the Neil Thompson Cup.[/caption]

U-16 girls are facing a number of league matches over the next few weeks with a bye in to the semi final of the championship. Good turnouts at training after a very fragmented period due to holidays and lack of matches for the girls. Girls away this Wednesday night to Newry Bosco meeting at pitch for 5.15.

Óg Sport – A number of the U-14 boys played in the East Down section of this at the Red High last Wednesday night. A great night of football ended with Saul beating Loughinisland to qualify for the county final. This final will have taken place by the time you have read this and will be reported on in next weeks notes. Hopefully we’ll have a positive result!

U-14 Boys – play in the East Down final this weekend after a classy victory over Castlewellan in Bright last Monday night. The boys won through with a great performance and look forward to the final with Kilcoo. Lead well from the back by Ronan Holland, who pulled off two fantastic saves in the first half, the boys lead by eight points at half time. A fightback from Castlewellan was halted with a goal and a point from James Mahoney after some excellent play from Andy Harney, Jamie Morgan, and Decky McComiskey. There were other good performances on the night from Ruari O’Hare, Shea McComiskey and Daniel Napier. The final takes place in Ballykinlar this Saturday afternoon at 1pm. Plenty of time to get the flags and banners ready!

U-14 Girls play their last league game at home to Dundrum on Thursday nite 7pm coming. Looking for another win on the back of a great victory over Tullylish.

U-12 Boys – enjoyed a fantastic morning of football at the Pat Doyle memorial tournament in Leitrim on Saturday morning. This was their first time competing in this particular event and they acquitted themselves very well. An early win against Annaclone and an Allstars team, meant their final group game was the decider for winners of the group against the hosts.

Leitrim started with the strong wind and scored first, but it was the Saul lads who demonstrated better team play. With Shane O’Hare and Jordan Vaughan keeping things tight at the back, the midfield of Philly Doran and Decky McComiskey supported by Jack Fitz were able to push up and at half time they were well in the game. Two quick scores from Ronan Connor and Aodhan Harney, put them in front, but a couple of lapses at the back let Leitrim regain the lead.

Brian Perry came on and set up Connor for an almost certain goal, but the Leitrim defence somehow kept the ball out and held on for the win. Kilcoo were next up for the lads in the cup semi. A very slow start against the wind, left the boys with a mountain to climb in the second, and even though they outscored them in the second half, it was not by enough. Kilcoo went on to win the final. Thanks to Leitrim for the invitation to such a well run tournament, that was a credit to the organisational skills of PJ McGee, Dan Morgan and Ryan Doyle. It was a truly fitting way to honour the memory of such a true gael as the late Pat Doyle.

[caption id="attachment_42022" align="alignright" width="390"]The Saul U-12 girls. The Saul U-12 girls.[/caption]

U-12 Girls – made the short journey to Downpatrick to take part in their tournament on Saturday past. The girls were drawn in the group stages with RGU A, Carryduff and St Enda’s(Glengormley). They started with St Enda’s and, although getting great scores in, they were narrowly defeated by 2 points. The defensive team work from Niamh Ledlie, Niamh Curran and Kelly Pito was excellent and well led by Aisling Kinsella, who had a great few saves to make, in goals.

The forward line of Rebecca Hanna, Eimear Mullan and Maddie Crawford had some well worked scores between them. Aoife Burns and Emma Campbell worked tirelessly in midfield to feed the ball in towards their teammates. It was a good performance from the girls but they were taking their time to get settled! Next were the hosts. This was a hard fought contest but Saul did not take their chances. It wasn’t until the girls played Carryduff that they had settled into their stride.

Further introductions to the team of Enya Jennings, Caitlin Kerr, Charlotte Curran and Alicia Bohill-Garrigan got thehelped improve some of the play and a few more scores were earned. Ciara Vaughan moved into goals and Aisling Kinsella came into defence and settled in well. Niamh McGrath and Katie Ledlie are really improving with every game they play. They showed real courage and perseverance against some girls who have a lot more experience than them.

Two great players for the future! After beating Carryduff the girls heads were high and kicked it up a gear and won very convincingly, not allowing Burren to score at all! The semi-final was a much tougher affair, but the girls put up a good fight and a very strong Teconnaught side came out on top.  It was a great day and thanks to Downpatrick for the invite. Well done to the whole squad of 16 girls and their parents who came along to support. The girls are showing great potential for the future!!

U-10’s – Congratulations to the U10 boys who lifted the Neil Thompson Cup for the second year running in Ballykinlar. A fantastic team effort saw great commitment from all 17 boys and speaks volumes for their efforts in training and their togetherness as a team. Led by Justy Magilton the Saul men took the game to each of the teams they defeated. Ardglass and a tricky Darragh Cross were put to the sword in the early group games.

While not wanting to single out any one player it is worth mentioning Conor Kernan’s early goal that settled nerves and the brace a piece claimed by the ever improving Ritchie and O’Dwyer also did serious damage at important points. Also the devastating impact of young Magee as he let rip was something to behold. But in truth each victory was more about combination play and great teamwork.

With Paddy Tumelty effortlessly switching between forwards and goals, and a back line that at different times combined Kinsella, O’Hagan, Murphy, Shea Burns and Keanan Curran and who were tighter than a misers fist (only 7 points conceded all day and no goals) by the time they defeated the “Fin” in a hard fought game the lads were primed for the final against a tough Loughinisland unit. 1 – 3 down at half time the boys had to dig deep, none more so than a bruised and a battered Harry Obank. Harry played through the pain and as Saul clawed their way back to parity it was his crucial goal that put daylight between the teams. With Mahoney chomping at the bit and driving the team forward Matthew Burns sealed the victory with a fine final score.

The lads worked hard and conducted themselves in a manner that did their club and parents proud. Well done boys – you were brilliant.

Anyone who is aged Under 17 on 1st of Jan 2014 and is interested in taking part in Scór na nÓg please register your interest by email or phone Angela on 07955925926. This includes instrument playing, singing, recitation and dancing. Perhaps you would like to take part in ballad group, instrumental group, ceili or set dancing. There may also be a drama based competition, yet to be confirmed.

Saul Golf Classic – over 150 ‘golfers’ enjoyed a great day on Friday at the club’s second annual Golf Classic. With good conditions and Downpatrick Golf course in great order, some great scores were posted. Juvenile player Rory Fitzsimons won with 42pts, closely followed by committee member and bandit Brian Jennings in second with 41. Best club member prize went to another old hand, Niall Powderly. In fact both Niall and Brian play regularly together in Downpatrick, so it seems that all that practice paid off.

The club would like to thank all of the competitors and sponsors who contributed to such a successful day. Also many thanks to Robbie from the Golf Hut and to Downpatrick Golf Club, who were excellent hosts. Finally thanks to everyone who purchased tickets, or donated prizes for the ballot. Stephen Shields was especially pleased with the bath set he won, perhaps he’ll smell much sweeter than normal!