The First Year boys and girls played brilliantly in Waterford on Tuesday, 5th December but were up against some very tough teams. They kept their heads high and did the coaches and the school proud.
The boys were competing against St Francis College (Rochestown, Cork), Good Counsel (New Ross, Wexford) and St Joseph’s (The Bish, Galway).
Game 1: Carndonagh CS 2-3 St Francis College
CCS had a great start and went a goal up, scored by Adam Duffy. On the stroke of half-time, CCS missed a great chance to go 2-0 up. St Francis hit on the counter attack with a well taken goal to level the game 1-1 at half-time. Kyran Cantwell was brought on and immediately caused havoc in the opponent's defence with his relentless pressing and work rate and he forced a mistake to put CCS 2-1 up with seven minutes to go. CCS held this lead until three minutes from time. But two quickfire strikes from St Francis marksman Harry Nevin secured a 3-2 victory over CCS.
Game 2: Carndonagh CS 2-5 Good Counsel
The CCS boys started the game off very well again with Lee Coyle scoring in the first few minutes. However, Good Counsel took control and scored an equalizer before scoring from three consecutive corners to lead 4-1 at the break. Mr Doherty emptied the bench at half-time and added fresh legs with Sean O’Donnell in particular standing out. Sean O'D won a penalty which Sean O’Kane converted to make it 4-2. The boys continued to work hard but another goal on the counter attack ensured the final score was 5-2 to Good Counsel.
Game 3: Carndonagh CS 2-0 St Joseph's
Even after the first two defeats, the boys kept their heads up and performed fantastically in their final game. Cadán managed to make some excellent saves, with defenders working very hard to ensure St Joseph’s couldn’t create any clear chances. CCS created a series of chances which were all well saved by the St Joseph’s goalkeeper. Sean O’ Donnell finally broke the deadlock when showing intelligence and bravery to beat the keeper to the ball and roll it into the net. The scoreline was 1-0 at half-time with CCS well on top. The boys were determined to finish with a win and controlled the second half excellently. An Adam Duffy strike ensured a 2-0 win and a 3rd place finish overall.
The boys were a little disappointed at the end, but it was great to finish on the winning note they deserved. St Francis strolled to victory in their other two games and the boys were left to wonder what might have been had they held on for the last three minutes in their first game. Mr Conor Doherty and Ms Anita Hegarty were very proud of the performances they put in. They represented their school excellently on the big stage with every member of the squad getting a game throughout the tournament.
Boys Squad: Cadán Doherty, Seán O’Kane, Dara Harkin, Lee Coyle, Jamie McKinney, Aaron Porter, Ryan McLaughlin, Adam Duffy, Seán O’Donnell, Kyran Cantwell, Liam McWeeney, Matthew Mooney
Coaches - Conor Doherty & Anita Hegarty
The girls were competing against Presentation SS (Ballypheane, Cork), St Leo’s College (Carlow) and St Attracta’s College (Sligo).
Game 1: Carndonagh CS 1-2 Presentation SS
The girls had a great start to the game with Sophie Murphy scoring a goal in the first minute. However, on the next attack Sophie was injured and had to sit out the rest of the game. She was a big loss to the CCS girls, who were also missing their other main striker Dacia Crumlish to injury. The girls worked together very well and were unlucky when the Cork keeper made an excellent save from an Emma Devlin strike to stop CCS going 2-0 up. The Cork school then punished CCS on the stroke of half-time with a well taken goal. The CCS girls played some fantastic football in this game and laid siege to the Cork goal without being able to make a breakthrough. CCS were hit with a sucker-punch in the last minute when a corner came into the box. After a scramble, the ball ended up in the CCS net and cruelly the girls were defeated 2-1.
Game 2: Carndonagh CS 2-4 St Leo’s College
Sophie Murphy showed great bravery and started the second game against St Leo’s (Carlow), managing to score early on to put the girls ahead. The girls then switched off, allowing St Leo’s to score two goals. In the second-half the girls worked extremely hard and Sophie managed to score another goal. However, CCS struggled to contain an excellent St Leo’s team who scored two more goals, ending the game 4-2 to St Leo’s.
Game 3: Carndonagh CS- 1-3 St Attraca’s
The girls had a good start to their final game with Sophie scoring almost immediately. All the girls tried their hardest with everyone working together, but the were unable to hold off St Attraca’s who managed to score two goals before half time. Mr Doherty and Ms Hegarty used their whole bench in this game, giving the team some fresh legs. Even though they lost, it was a tight game and the girls managed to compete excellently against a very good side.
The girls finished the tournament in fourth place. Even though they were disappointed, they still all played extremely well and to the best of their ability, with every girl getting game time.
Girls Squad: Yasmin Crumlish; Katherine Doherty; Alaina Keogh; Sophie Murphy; Emma Devlin; Dacia Crumlish; Chloe Lacey; Ella McGonigle; Lorinne Greene; Kate Doherty, Ciara Gilmore, Caitlin Kelly.
Coaches - Mr Conor Doherty and Ms Anita Hegarty
Mr Conor Doherty and Ms Anita Hegarty couldn’t speak highly enough of the effort put into the tournament. They were extremely proud and commended the players’ conduct both on and off the pitch. They were a credit to their school, their families and themselves. They should hold their heads high. Not only was it the first time the school had reached the All Ireland Futsal Finals - history was made because no school has ever reached the Finals in both boys and girls tournaments in the same year. Mr Doherty and Ms Hegarty would like to acknowledge the support and assistance they received from the School Management, the staff and also the parents of the players both on the day and throughout the year.
A BIG thank you also goes to the school’s friends in the United States, spearheaded by the St Charles Sister Cities organisation. Their help, along with that of all supporters and contributors, will be formally acknowledged before Christmas.