Knockbeg College hosted its Annual 1916 Commemoration Football Blitz last month.
The Cup and Shield are named in honour of two prominent figures in the 1916 Rising.
The Gearóid O’Sullivan Cup is named after Gearóid O’Sullivan, who hoisted the tricolour flag above the GPO at the beginning of the 1916 Rising.
Following his release from Frongoch Prison, for his involvement in the 1916 Rising, he became an Irish Teacher in Knockbeg College and helped to develop the Irish culture and Gaelic Games during his time here.
The Michael O’Hanrahan Shield is named after Michael O’Hanrahan who was from Carlow Town and became a quartermaster general of the 2nd Batallion in Jacob’s Factory.
He was executed for his role in the Rising, on May 4 1916. The local O’Hanrahan’s GAA club is named in his honour.
Blessed with excellent weather, Leinster schools such as Colaiste Naomh Eoin (Stillorgan), St. Peter’s College (Wexford), Scoil Mhuire (Clane), Good Counsel (New Ross), Carlow CBS and a combination of Colaiste Eoin (Hacketstown) and Presentation College Carlow were in attendance.
O’Hanrahan’s GFC, Carlow Town Hurling Club and the back pitch of Netwatch Cullen Park provided superb playing surfaces for the high standard of football on show.
Unique rules such as only being allowed to play the ball twice, picking the ball off the ground and calling a mark in general play, encouraged fast movement of the ball and accurate kick-passes to teammates.
While unlimited substitutions ensured an intense pace with end-to-end action throughout.
Knockbeg College overcame Colaiste Naomh Eoin from Stillorgan in their first group game.
The Dublin outfit were physically strong, however with quick movement of the ball through the lines Conor Nolan was able to fire the ball to the net.
Eoghan McGlinchey’s darting runs were causing all sorts of problems for the opposition, and he chipped in with two excellent points. Patrick Walsh, Bernard Wheatley and Gerard Kelly also raised white flags to ensure a 1-7 to 1-3 victory.
Good Counsel of New Ross provided a stern test in the second group game.
In the first half Eoin Hosey supplied a great pass to Patrick Walsh on the 14 metre line, who in turn calmly slotted the ball into the top left corner.
The same player added another point, along Bernard Wheatley and Conor Nolan.
Our midfielder, Jack McDonald, twisted his knee after bravely challenging for possession and unfortunately could not resume play for the rest of the day.
After the interval, a string of Knockbeg passes allowed corner back Michael Dempsey to blast the ball to the back of the net.
Good Counsel responded with two goals of their own in quick succession. Minutes later Eoghan Mcglinchey’s shot was excellently tapped in by Gerard Kelly at the back post.
Unfortunately the Wexford side were also efficient in the scoring department, and won the game on the narrowest of margins, 3-6 to 3-5.
As a result we qualified for the Cup Semi-Final against St. Peter’s of Wexford.
This year’s Senior Leinster “A” Football Champions and beaten All Ireland finalists started quickly, and raced in to a considerable lead.
In the second half, Eoghan McGlinchey tapped over a point directly in front of the goals after a great pass from Conor Nolan. Shortly after, Patrick Walsh intercepted a stray handpass and from eight metres out he found the bottom corner of the net with a well-placed shot.
Unfortunately it was too little too late, and the Wexford school won a score line of 2.6 to 1-3.
St. Peter’s went on to contest the Gearoid O Sullivan Cup Final with Good Counsel of New Ross.
In a tight affair Good Counsel just shaded it with the narrowest of margins.
Meanwhile, the Carlow combination of Colaiste Eoin (Hacketstown) and Presentation College Carlow edged out Colaiste Naomh Eoin of Stillorgan in the Michael O’Hanrahan Shield Final.
Knockbeg College would like to take this opportunity to thank all the schools involved in the blitz, and to Brendan Hayden with his assistance in running the event on the day.
KNOCKBEG COLLEGE: Adam Nichol Waugh ( St. Joseph’s) Michael Dempsey (St. Joseph’s), Niall Brennan (St. Joseph’s), John Fennelly (Annanough), Jack Lacey (St. Joseph’s), Jamie Lunney (Ballinabranna), Stephen McDonell (St. Joseph’s), Jack McDonald (Fighting Cock’s), Martin Moloney (St. Laurence’s), Adam Feeney (Burren Rangers), Conor Nolan (Castledermot), Bernard Wheatley (St. Joseph’s), Patrick Walsh( Killeshin), Eoghan McGlinchey (Athy), Eoin Hosey (Tinryland), Kevin Byrne (Ballylinan), Michael Joyce (Burren Rangers), Cillian Bergin (Grangenolvin), Ronan Stapleton (Annanough), Gerard Kelly (Killeshin), Daragh McDonald (Killeshin), Gavin Weston (St. Joseph’s).
Players who were unavailable due to being involved with County Minor panels/Injured: Seamus Lacey (Ballylinan), Killian Horgan (Annanough), Diarmuid Ruth (Eire Óg), Cialann Mulhall (Arles-Kilcruise), Ronan Curran(Tinryland), Conor Brennan (Tinryland), Cailim Lafford (St. Joseph’s).