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Gort girls do it again

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The Gort Community School basketball team which won the U16 C League title in the National Basketball Arena, Tallaght. Back row, left to right: Anne McLoughlin, Ass. Coach, Olivia Daniels, Ass. coach, Emma Fennessy, Ciara Helebert, Hannah Keenan, Olga Burke, Edel Nolan, Sarah Dolan, Kate Tarpey, Pat Bourke, Coach, Front row: Jacqui Bergin, Roisin Clancy, Rebecca Smyth, Nicola Quirke, Lisa Della Chiesa, Aine Murphy.

GORT Community School’s U16 C Girls basketball team made history last week when they capped off a perfect year to win their second All-Ireland Schools final on a scoreline of 45-39.

Their victory over Coláiste Chroí Naofa of Cork completed the League and Cup All-Ireland double in 2015 for this talented Gort Community School squad.

With prior experience of playing in the National Arena, Tallaght behind them, Gort opened the match with intensity to establish an early lead. Their tactical game plan saw some excellent points being put on the board with Lisa Della Chiesa, who was awarded Most Valuable Player on the day,  being both the creator and convertor of a number of effectively worked fast breaks.

Edel Nolan, Ciara Helebert and Olga Burke also secured some fine baskets during the opening half through some excellent team play and cuts to the basket. Despite Gort’s dominance at this stage, Coláiste Chroí Naofa’s long and accurate shooting range kept them in contention at all times.

A well finished basket from Áine Murphy just before the half time buzzer gave the Gort girls a five point advantage, but the game was far from over. The second half saw an increase in the Cork side’s momentum.

Following a quick start off the block, it wasn’t long before their tactics began to cause problems.  Aisling O’Leary’s effective attack through the heart of Gort’s defence time and again allowed her to gain a constant route to the basket to tally point after point.

This dominant patch from Cork initiated a change in Gort’s defensive structure to thwart the threat of Coláiste Chroí Naofa’s main play maker. Kate Tarpey, Ciara Helebert and Hannah Keenan helped Gort to regain their composure in defence and to maintain a five point lead heading into the last eight minutes.

In what was a pulsating final quarter, Gort showed true resilience in defence.  At this stage Gort’s captain Olga Burke dug deep to lead the way and despite trying to shrug off an injury, she still managed to secure four points for her team at a truly pivotal stage.

These points were then answered by Coláiste Chroí Naofa’s Myra O’Sullivan who hit two impressive three pointers to bring it to a three point game in the closing minutes.

This time, however, it was Áine Murphy of Gort Community School who replied with an important basket to show her side were never going to give up the fight.

At the final whistle, the scoreline was 45-39.  The historic day belonged to the Gort Community School girls and to their dedicated coaches Pat Bourke, Olivia Daniels and Anne McLoughlin.

“We do a lot of training”, said MVP Della Chiesa. “Every Saturday we train and we were training and playing matches during the mid-term as well. It’s a big help. This is unreal. Hopefully, next year we’ll be back as well.”

Gort CS top scorers: O Burke 18, L Della Chiesa 14, A Murphy 8.

CITY TRIBUNE

Referee shortage sees local games called off

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The Salthill Devon side that beat Corrib Celtic 4-1 in Drom last Friday night. Back row from left: Jackson Da Silva, Andrew Connolly, Cillian Doyle, Shane O’Rourke, Calum Crowe, and Arek Mamala. Front: Matthew Barrett, Darren Darcy, Matthew Murray, Michael Gallagher and Vinny Faherty. Photos: Iain McDonald.

Soccer Wrap with Mike Rafferty

It is not often that Mervue United have to wait until the third series of games in the Premier Division to get their first win, but after earlier losses to Maree/Oranmore and Athenry they finally secured their first success on the all-weather at Fahy’s Field on Sunday morning.

A 2-1 win over St Bernard’s moved them off the foot of the table, but in a close contest it was an outcome that could have gone either way. Mayo native Eoin Prendergast took both his goals well, although they were of the simple variety as deliveries over the top exposed the visitors cover and the former Conn Rangers striker was left with simple tap-in’s as they led by two at the break.

In contrast the St Bernard’s reply was a cracking effort as Matty Finn crossed from the right and the inrushing Paddy Mullins headed powerfully past Rob Carr to pull one back.

The visitors had plenty of opportunities to get back on level terms, but it was an occasion when their finishing let them down. Twice Dillon Murphy threatened a breakthrough, but his opening effort few across the face of goal; before failing to connect with a Keith Forde delivery.

Brian Moran had an effort that was easily gathered by Rob Carr, before Matty Finn was well off target with a late chance. All the opportunities were not at the one end, as Mervue threatened when Robert Carroll headed over following a Eli Sheedy corner; while Prendergast missed a great chance to complete his hat-trick, but fired over from in front of goal after a neat knockdown by Stephen Larkin set him up.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Lyons’ spectacular bicycle kick carries day for United

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Mikie Rowe of Galway United and Cork City's Cian Coleman in a race for possession during Friday night's First Division tie at Eamonn Deacy Park.

Galway United  2

Cork City 1

By Mike Rafferty at Eamonn Deacy Park

THERE is no doubt that the Galway United players will have had more of a pep in their step at training this week as their come-from-behind victory over Cork City at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday night finally ended their five match winless streak and. hopefully, in the process installed a bit of confidence in their own ability.

No doubt the fact that the visitors would have clinched the Airtricity First Division title if they were to win was a further incentive for the home side to raise their game to a level that had gone missing in recent outings.

However, United did fall behind for the fourth game in succession, before two goals in a three minute spell by Wilson Waweru and Charlie Lyons rescued the situation and moved them to within seven points of the league leaders. United do enjoy a game in hand and while they are free this weekend, their next outing away against Treaty United will bring them level on games played with Cork City.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Connacht thrashed by Ulster but internationals return for tough South African trip

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Connacht's Caolin Blade who scored their only try in Saturday's heavy URC defeat to Ulster at the Kingspan Stadium.

By JOHN FALLON

ANDY Friend says Connacht need to pick up the pieces quickly from an opening night hammering (36-10) to Ulster after going down by five tries to one in Belfast.

Ulster dominated the opening half and were good value for their 14-3 lead as Connacht had to defend for long periods of a half littered with mistakes by both sides.

Centres Luke Marshall and Stuart McCloskey were dominant and the two combined for the opening score after 27 minutes, before 21-year old hooker Tom Stewart crowned his first start by punishing poor defending when he looped around a lineout to score three minutes from the break.

Connacht finished the half with a boost when Conor Fitzgerald landed a penalty from 35 metres to cut the gap to 11 points but they fell apart after the restart, coughing up six penalties in ten minutes.

Scrum-half Nathan Doak extended the lead with a 45th minute penalty and then he touched down for a try six minutes later when Stewart was stopped just short.

Doak’s third conversion made it 24-3 as both sides emptied their benches and Ulster secured the bonus point when full-back Stewart Moore got over after Connacht No.8 Paul Boyle was binned for offiside.

Replacement scrum-half Caolin Blade got over for a consolation try ten minutes from time after former Leinster out-half David Hawkshaw also impressed after coming on, but other than the performance of another ex-Leinster player, flanker Josh Murphy, there were few other consolations as Ulster finished on a high with replacement prop Callum Reid getting the touchdown and Doak converting from the right.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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