Aug 15

Helen Lenihan gives Female Darkest Force their own Miracle Match

Wed 14th Aug 2019 – With the Ladies Division 4 team training ahead of next Wednesdays Junior C Semi Final against Naomh Olaf of Balally, the St Brendan’s Ladies Division 8 team were in action against St Jude’s in the Division 8 Cup.
The task confronting the Female Darkest Force was a herculean one, as they needed to win the game by 27 points or more in order to get into the semi-finals of the cup competition. Missing a number of key players, sickness and work caused the absence of others late in the day.
From the beginning, the miracle looked like it was very much on, when Emma Duffy crashed the ball into the St Jude’s net twice inside the first five minutes. Marina Kilduff supplied the final pass for both goals. In fact for the first goal, Kilduff had a shot that was half blocked down, but the excellent Duffy scored from the rebound.
However, St Jude’s settled down and scored four consecutive points from the next four attacks. Duffy’s bid for a first quarter hat trick were thwarted when her shot rattled the crossbar, but she made amends by closing down an out coming St Jude’s defender, which lead to her over-carrying. Duffy kicked the free in herself. Another St Jude’s attack yielded a point to leave the score as St Brendan’s 2-01 to St Jude’s 0-05.
Duffy remained St Brendan’s scorer in chief and increased her tally to 2-02 with a point from play after a pass from Helen Macklin. Sabrina Fleming donned the goalkeepers gloves for the evening but was unlucky not to stop a St Jude’s shot from going into the net. However, St Brendan’s responded immediately with a third goal. This time Duffy was the provider for Kilduff. Helen Macklin then made it 3-03 with a close range point.
With six minutes to go in the first half, a turnover from Niamh Byrne started a move that lead to Kilduff scoring her second goal. This made the score 4-04 to 1-05. Then Tanya Brennan got her name on the score sheet with a point following a good turnover from Anne Marie Riney.
In the closing stages of the first half and Kilduff added another point following good work from Geraldine Cleary, a brace of St Jude’s points ensured a half time lead for Sr Brendan’s.

Half Time Score: St Brendan’s 4-06 (18) to 1-7 (10) St Jude’s.

It was a first half that was full of running and end to end action. One where the Female Darkest Force were playing into a very strong wind as they defended the city end. So with an eight point lead could St Brendan’s get the scores necessary to get into the semi finals?
As the second half threw in, St Jude’s made the task a lot more onerous by scoring a goal in the opening minute. Sabrina Fleming’s kick-out was won by Geraldine Cleary and onto Kilduff for a point to make it a six point game. Six became nine with Kilduff netting her hat-trick, after a move involving Emma Duffy and Helen Macklin 5-07 to 2-07.
Indeed nine became twelve with Kilduff netting her fourth goal after Enya Cody intervened, to ensure that Fleming wasn’t beaten for a third time, with a super turnover. Kilduff could have got a fifth goal but had to settle for a point after some great work by Duffy. This made the score 6-08 to 2-07.

The Female Darkest Force then hit a hot purple patch with points inside a minute from Helen Macklin and Siobhan Maloney. Michael Connolly ordered his side to really go for it and they did with another point to Brennan despite tigerish defence by St Jude’s. 6-11 to 2-07
Niamh Nestor then came on as substitute in place of Kilduff, who got a standing ovation for her fine efforts. Nestor however got in the scoresheet after only a minute on the field with a point. Brennan, Cleary and Maloney won St Jude’s kick outs with catches and all score wind assisted points to make it 6-16 to 2-07, a 21 point lead, but will they get the 6 more points needed to prevail?
Helen Lenihan was doing fine work in midfield and St Brendan’s continued to push on and a succession of points from the two Helen’s, Macklin with one and Lenihan with two made it 6-19, Tanya Brennan then added to her tally with a point following a turnover from Romy Madden. 6-20 to 2-7, a 25 point lead
Emma Duffy got the first and second goals and almost got her hat trick in the 15th minute, unfazed the unselfish Duffy assisted well as Marina Kilduff scored four goals. But deservedly, Duffy finally got het hat trick with a tremendous strike, now there was a 28 point lead.
However, in a rare attack, St Jude’s pegged a point back and St Brendan’s needed to get one more point to overhaul Na Gaeil Oga’s points difference in the Cup table. St Brendan’s pushed back on again to get another point from Siobhan Maloney.
With only minutes to go and it was local lady, Mairead Scollan, who rounded off the scoring. The referee in the fading daylight blew the final whistle.
So like the many St Brendan’s teams of the past, The Ladies Division 8 team showed great spirit and have their very own miracle result. They can look forward to a Cup Semi Final but before that, there is a Junior H Championship Semi-Final to be played against St Brigid’s on August 28th.
For the 1st team, it’s a Junior C Championship away to Naomh Olaf next on the horizon on Wednesday the 21st, away in Balally (@7.30pm).

Final score from Longmeadows: St Brendan’s 7-22 (43) to 2-08 (14) St Jude’s.



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Jul 25

Ladies Div8 Footballers Up and Running in Junior H Championship

Ladies 2nds Champ v St Judes 24072019 (1)Mon 22 July 2019 – The St Brendan’s Ladies Div4 Footballers, sponsored by McGowan’s of Phibsboro travelled to Killinarden Park in Tallaght for a top of the table league clash against the Robert Emmett’s / Croi Ro Naofa (RECRoN) amalgamation. Despite The Female Dark Force winning the Cup Fixture 9-12 to 1-04 on July 3rd, in reality, RECRoN were seriously depleted that evening and they had their big hitters back for this league fixture. RECRoN started at a blistering pace and went in leading at half time 4-07 to 1-06 with three of those goals coming in the opening quarter whilst the fourth goal was as a result of a short kicked being pinched. Claire McIntyre getting the St Brendan’s major.

Despite Aisling Newton hitting the opening score of the second half, RECRoN, got a fifth goal when a free in hit the upright and then fisted into the net. The home side, marked tightly and fought for every ball, won the contest 5-11 to 1-12, ending St Brendan’s hopes of winning Division 4, but there is still a Cup Final and Junior C Championship Semi Final to look forward to in August.

Wed 24 July 2019 – The St Brendan’s Div8 team, started their Junior H Championship campaign with a home tie in Grangegorman against St Jude’s.

The Female Darkest Force got off to a dream start with a goal from Marina Kilduff. Kilduff bust through the St Jude’s defence with a sensational solo run and low shot in the net, this was followed by a point from the Bundoran poacher Tanya Brennan after a turnover from Geraldine Cleary.

The game settled down and despite a brace of Kilduff wides, she did supply Emma Duffy with the final pass to allow Duffy make it 1-02 to no score after 11 minutes. Then a minute later Catriona Clerkin made it 1-03. In the St Brendan’s defence, Enya Cody ensured Augustina Lazarini was the only St Brendan’s player with no ball possession after 12 minutes, as she blocked a St Jude’s pass in to a dangerous area, the ball was cleared by Full Back Anne Marie Riney.

15 minutes gone and a Brennan free in found Lorraine Carrabine, who shot over the bar. Cleary turned over another ball in the middle third and passed to Brennan. The ball was played to Marina Kilduff, and her shot from a tight angle sailed over the bar. Kilduff’s next bid for a score was not allowed as the referee called the play back for a St Brendan’s free. Kilduff despite having the material of her, fine looking Mc Gowan’s of Phibsboro sponsored Azzurri manufactured, jersey well tested as she had driven the ball over the bar at the Phibsboro end of the park. Brennan converted the free to make it 1-06 to no score after 20 minutes and such was the humid night, the referee gave a three minute water break, or in Lorna Barton’s case, a Dextro Energy break (Please note that all Sponsorship is gratefully accepted ).

After a water break, St Jude’s got on to the score board with a point, and Lazarini got her hands on the ball for the first time. She then found Anne Marie Casey with the kick out. Casey started the move that lead to a point from Karen Tighe, on as a sub in place of the injured Nicola Carrabine. Another St Jude’s point followed, and despite an accidental fist pass into the net, Kate Reddan made amends by winning possession in the next play, passing to Kilduff and finally Emma Duffy for another point

Half Time Score: St Brendans 1-08 to 0-02 St Jude’s.

St Brendan’s were quick to put the issue beyond doubt early in the second half with a goal from Karen Tighe, after her initial shot was saved by the goalkeeper, but Tighe tucked the ball away from a rebound. The referee adjudged that a St Jude’s goal bound shot was foot blocked by a St Brendan’s defender standing 4 – 5 yards away from the kicker and a penalty was awarded. But fine work from young Augustina Lazarini ensured that she was not to be beaten. This was the tenth time in the famous Black and Gold of St Brendan’s, that Lazarini was not beaten from the penalty spot.

The Argentine’s kick-out was the catalyst for the next St Brendan’s point scored by Catriona Clerkin. Brennan continued her fine scoring form with a point from a free after an unsatisfactory tackle on Helen Macklin.

The St Brendan’s defence were playing well and the dynamic Helen Lenihan was winning a lot of ball at wing back. But special mention must go to substitute Cait Ni Cheallachain who showed super resolve to pull harder in a game of chicken as St Jude’s runner from the middle attempted to pull on a loose ball. Missing a toenail was not going to leave Cait hesitating. After a St Jude’s kick-out went over the side-line, Lorna Barton, fresh from consuming another pack of Dextro Energy tablets, won possession and passed to Geraldine Cleary. Cleary picked out Clerkin, whose shot was saved but the ball came back to Emma Duffy who made no mistake as she volleyed her first goal of the evening. The score now was St Brendan’s 3-11 to St Jude’s 0-02.

Augustina Lazarini’s dream of a second half shut out was almost derailed, when a free in was awarded to St Jude’s. The quickly taken free, with all the Brendan’s backs on the goal line, went low and hard but the Argentine collected and was fouled in the process. The free out ended with Karen Tighe. Tighe weaved this way and that in a Maradona like fashion and then tapped the ball over the bar.

Emma Duffy rounded off proceedings with a goal after some aerial ping pong in the penalty area which saw Tighe have goal shots saved by the goalkeeper and rebound off the post. Duffy’s initial shot also was saved by the goalkeeper but made no mistake second time around with a straightforward side step into the net.

Karen Tighe’s bid for a second goal ended when her shot was cleared off the line but it mattered little and the St Brendan’s Ladies got their Championship campaign up and running with a tremendous victory. Next up is a trip to Erin Go Bragh next Wednesday, 31 Aug2019.

Final score from Grangegorman St Brendan’s 4-12(24) to 0-02 St Jude’s.

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Jul 11

Explosive action at the Magazine Fort between the St Brendan’s Div8 Ladies and NGO

Ladies 2nds v Na Gaeil Oga 10072019 (5)Wed 10 July 2019 – The St Brendan’s Ladies Div 4 team got a walkover and were not in action this Wednesday. It was up to the Div8 team to take the limelight. On the back of a three point victory in the Division 8 Cup against St James Gaels, hopes were high going into this cup game away to the Conradh Na Gaelige sponsored Na Gaeil Óga. The match was played on the Park Rangers GAA pitches at the back of the magazine fort in the Phoenix Park.

Getting to the pitch was complicated by a large section of the Phoenix Park being closed off by the Gardai for a cycling / jogging combo type race. This meant Marina Kilduff and Kate Reddan did not make the throw in. The game was played in a freshly cut pitch. Unfortunately, the cuttings were still on the ground and the heavens opened an hour before throw-in, making conditions difficult for both teams.

The grass cuttings and pitch surface contributed to the opening goal by Na Gail Óga. A long distance punt / shot bounced onto a large pile of grass cuttings, changed the direction of the ball and the ball skidded just inside Augustina Lazarini’s goal post, when it looked like it was heading about 3 foot wide, to give the NGO side the lead.

The Female Darkest Force did settle into the game and after getting to grips with the ground conditions, got their opening score from The Bundoran Star Tanya Brennan. This came after full forward Emma Duffy picked out Helen Macklin in a good position, who in turn picked out Brennan in an even better position to pop the ball over the bar.

A NGO shot was cleared by Niamh Byrne and onto Anne Marie Casey, the move also involved Emma Duffy, Helen Macklin and Tanya Brennan and in the end it was Lorraine Carrabine hit the ball over the bar. NGO were strong around midfield and Anne Marie Casey and Lorraine Carrabine worked hard to push up the field as well as curtail the opposition.

Geraldine Cleary made a mockery of the 10 metre head start given by the NGO half forward by making the meters and snatching the ball of the opponents grasp and winning a free out. However, NGO did manage to hit a brace of points. Making use of the small pitch and consistantly pushing right into the area where the small parallelogram should be, NGO then almost got a goal, but of an off the line clearance by Niamh Byrne was both timely and brave. Niamh was defending heroically all evening.

Emma Duffy had a shot that went wide and Tanya Brenna saw her free in hit the upright and it was subsequently cleared by NGO, despite fine pressure from the St Brendan’s forwards. Karen Tighe’s bid to give St Brendan’s a third score, ended when she was strangely penalised for barging, the free out was the last action of the first half. Kate Reddan was introduced for Anne Marie Casey just before half time.


Half Time Score from the Phoenix Park: St Brendan’s 0-02 to 1-02 NGO.


The second half began with wides from Niamh Nestor and the Enniscrone Tiger Karen Tighe, but those wides were quickly forgotten about as St Brendan’s manged to get the equalising goal thanks to Tanya Brennan from 3 meters and a tight angle. Cue wild cheering and relief that St Brendan’s hard work was being reflected on the scoreboard.

The Female Darkest Force then took the lead thanks to Marina Kilduff with a shot similar to something Pat Spillane would score in his heyday with the turning of the hip. That one-point lead became two when Helen Macklin won a turnover, passed to Crossmolina woman Emma Duffy and finally onto Roisin Fitzmaurice. This made the score 1-04 to 1-02.

Going into the final quarter and NGÓ hit a brace of points to set up a tense nervy finish for both teams. It really was anyone’s match at this stage. NGÓ did take the lead with 5 minutes to go, but then there was a stoppage for an injury whilst the players stocked up on water.

The whatever water was consumed did the trick because Roisin Fitzmaurice won a NGÓ kickout, went on a 20metre solo run and kicked over the bar for another level score 1-5 each, but the home side got their noses out in front again with a point going into the final minute.

It looked like NGÓ were going to close out the game with a one point win, but Helen Lenihan brilliantly kept with her opponent forcing her into overcarrying. This gave St Brendan’s a lifeline, and they certainly made the most of it. Romy Madden caused havoc in the NGO backline and played an excellent ball into Karen Tighe and as calm as you like, The Enniscrone Tiger kicked the size 4 O’Neills over the bar for yet another level game 1-06 each.

NGÓ had one more opportunity to snatch it at the end, but fine work from Eimear Norton and the St Brendan’s defence shut out the NGO forward. She then was penalised for overcarrying. There was no time to take the free out because the referee whistled up for full time and with the scores level. To be honest it was a game, neither side deserved to lose.

However, St Brendan’s Ladies 2nd Xv are now on a three match unbeaten streak, something Eugene Cunningham and Michael Connolly will be happy about as preparations for the Junior H Championship continue.


Final Score from the Magazine Fort at the Phoenix Park: St Brendan’s 1-06 to 1-06 Na Gaeil Óga.



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Jun 06

Aoife Watters swimmingly guides Female Dark Force to 5th Successive Semi

8B3A7706_edit_smallWed 05 Jun 2019 - Following no game last week, The St Brendans Ladies 1st Xv, Sponsored my McGowans of Phibsborough, went into Round 5 of the Junior C Championship against Kilmacud Crokes with the winner going to the semi finals later in the summer.

The Female Dark Force meant business direct from the start with a point from Aisling Newton after 12 seconds when Roisin McDonald won the throw in and passed to fellow Inishowen lady Newton. The second point came two minutes later when Erin Fadian won a turnover and Christine Dilworth was on the end of the move with the shot over the bar.
Joan McNulty won a turnover in the middle third and passed to Ursula Murphy for point number 3. Point number 4 came in the next attack when Faye ‘Dunaway’ Kearney when she won the kickout herself and did the work herself. Five minutes gone and it was five points to no score with Newton with her second point from a tight angle with Murphy supplying the final pass.

Roisin McDonald sprinted the guts of 100 meters with a solo run, her shot fell short but Dilworth fouled the goalkeeper but her clearance went straight to Nicola Carrabine who passed to Newton and the Carndonagh

Cyclones shot dipped under the crossbar for the first goal. Sinead Morrissey, had her arm dragged back when in a good position and with her father Patrick acting a umpire, the Mullingar Dynamo took her free in over the bar. 1-06 with 9:30 on the clock.

10:15 gone and it was now 1-07 with Roisin McDonald on the scoresheet with a long range shot assisted by a huge gust of wind. Aoife Watters won the next kickout, she also applied the final pass to McDonald, and likewise to Christine Dilworth to make it 1-08 and a second point for the Knocknagree Knight.

The girls from Stillorgan finally got on the board with a point and Catherine Twomey defending heroically to ensure it was a point. Aoife Fitzmaurice made it 1-09 after Fermanagh Fingers Tara Foy won a turnover inside the 20 meter line. Ursula Murphy saw her shot go straight to the Kilmacud goalkeeper and the end result was a second point for the away side.

Eventually the second goal did come thanks to Sinead Morrissey after a Kilmacud shot fell short to Karen O’Connell and cleared by Catherine Twomey and final pass by Dilworth to Morrissey. Morrissey’s bid for a quick fire double ended when her shot was saved by the Kilmacud goalkeeper and the ball ricocheted off her father Patrick’s chest for a 45.

Aisling Newton’s tally became 1-03 with a point after The Francie Bellew of Mourneabbey Twomey was tripped making a clearance. A pass from Joan McNulty to Nicola Carrabine bounced over her head but Shauna ‘Jet’ Fitzpatick kept the move going and Ursula Murphy got the second point to make it 2-11.

Sinead Morrissey did get her second goal after Tara Foy won a sideline ball. There was confusion amongst the Kilmacud backs and with no support, Aoife Fitzmaurice forced her marker into over carrying. Morrissey promptly kicked the free in over the bar to make it 3-12. A sideline ball form Shauna ‘Jet’ Fitzpatick from Joan McNulty and onto Newton and the shot over the bar. 3-13 to 0-02.

Aisling Newton’s tally became 2-04 with a bullet of a shot for goal after McNulty won a turnover, despite the consistent shooting, St Brendans registered their first wide of the first from Christine Dilworth, albeit was forced out over the end line.

However, the Knocknagree Knight, with partner Sean T Ó Meallaigh watching on, did make amends with a well taken goal to round off a comprehensive first half performance with the half time score 5-13 to 0-02.

The Female Dark force were playing against the wind in the second half and didn’t expect to register 5-13, But Sinead Morrissey got the ball rolling with a point from a free in from 20 meters after Dilworth was taken out after taking a shot.

After playing great in the first half, Aoife Watters got on the scoresheet this second half with a point after Faye ‘Dunaway’ Kearney cleared Kilmacud free in off the goal line. Another player also got in the scoresheet for the first time in Joan McNulty with a point, similar start to the move with a Kilmacud free in but this time it was Catherine Twomey with the clearance. 5-16 to 0-03.

Robert Kelly and Colm O’Neill brought on Sinead ‘Dangermouse’ Reilly into the game, replacing Fitzpatrick and made an immediate impact by rounding the defence and shooting over bar. Indeed Dangermouse would make it a brace of points after a final pass from another substitute, Michelle Dolan, replacing Newton who got a standing ovation, from Robert Kelly only!

A line ball went straight to Nicola Carrabine and onto Ursula Murphy and a third point for The Cork Kipchoge and a 30 point advantage 5-19 to 0-04. Indeed Murphy was fouled inside the 20 meter line which allowed Sinead Morrissey to point another to make it 5-21.

Karen O’Connell was determined to keep a clean sheet but there was no second half shutout with Kilmacud scoring two second half points, one from a free in. The Fresh Prince of Kells only had five kickouts all second half with Catherine Twomey and Erin Fadian providing additional defence, indeed The Pied Piper of Achill provoked her maker into picking the ball off the ground whilst on her knees.

On the other side of the pitch, Ursula Murphy rounded off the scoring with a point after both Dilworth and Aoife Fitzmaurice changed their minds at the last second by passing instead of shooting and it was the latter that passed to Murphy.

The game fizzled out and in the end St Brendan’s Ladies were in their fifth consecutive Championship Semi Final, which will be played in August, something to look forward to then, but for now, focus switched to the League and the Cup with yet another encounter with Fingallians, this time in Longmeadows in Round 2 of The Division 4 Cup next Wednesday.


Final Score from Longmeadows St Brendans 5-22(27) to 0-04 Kilmacud Crokes.

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May 30

Marina Kilduff’s Roscommon Spirit of 1986 not enough for Female Darkest Force

Ladies 2nd League v Shankill 29052019Wed 29 May 2019 - The St Brendans Ladies 1st XV were due to play Parnells on Round 4 of the Junior C Championship, but unfortunately, the ladies from Coolock gave a walkover to The Female Dark Force and ensuring the next Wednesday’s Round 5 fixture against Kilmacud Crokes will be a de facto Quarter Final.

With the 1sts not playing, it’s the 2nds once again to embrace the limelight when the team, sponsored by Martin and Moran Property Advisors took to Shankill in Division 8, hoping for a repeat of the emphatic victory against St Judes two weeks ago.

The Female Darkest Force wore the 1st XV jerseys, as extra motivation to get on that team for later in the season. It took all of 11 minutes to get the first score and that went to the away side, who was playing into a strong breeze blowing from Chapelizod and hit three wides beforehand. But a stray pass was worked in by Shankill and Augustina Lazzerini was beaten for goal.

But St Brendans did respond well and Marina Kilduff got the opening score from a free in after being pushed in the back collecting a long ball off Lorraine Carrabine (sister of Nicola). Dextro Energy Lorna Barton won the next Shankill kick out and passed to Anne Marie Casey and a second point of the evening.

15:14 gone and we had a level game thanks to a point from Emma Boland. Helen Macklin won the turnover and passed to Barton then onto Boland for the level score. Indeed St Brendan’s Ladies 2nd XV would take the lead thanks to a point from Marina Kilduff, showing great Roscommon spirit her fellow county men showed in defeating Mayo in Castlebar for the first time since 1986 last Saturday evening, after collecting a free in from Boland. Indeed Kilduff snatched the ball in mid-flight off the Shankill goalkeeper, but her goal bound shot went across the face of goal and wide.

Kilduff did make amends however with her third point of the evening, following a long ball by Helen Lenihan. Shankill managed to get the ball over the bar with a point from close range after seeing too many shots drift wide or fall short, such was the strong breeze blowing this evening.

Anne Marie Casey got her second point of the evening from a tight angle. Shankill was almost in on goal but the referee spotted a clear push in the back on Anne Marie Riney and a free out ensued.


Half time score: St Brendan’s 0-06 to 1-01 Shankhill.


But the breeze blew much strongly in the second half and St Brendans were unable to add to the six points they got in the second half, whilst Shankill went on to score six points throughout the second half. Roisin Fitzmaurice had a chance in injury time but the ball went with the wind and wide. Even Marina Kilduff admitted that it was difficult to shoot into the strong breeze. Disappointment was the mood at the final whistle but the team played quite well besides and now have to wait until June 10th for their next game.
For the 1st Xv, it’s the De Facto Quarter Final of the Junior C Championship against Kilmacud Crokes in Longmeadows next Wednesday.


Final Score from Longmeadows: St Brendans 0-06 to 1-07 Shankill.

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May 24

Joe Kenny revels in his own Seamus Darby Moment

2nds v Lucan Sarsfields 23052019 (6)Thurs 23 May 2019 – Rooted to the bottom of AFL10 and with one win to their name (albeit a walkover victory), The St Brendans 2nd XV, in partnership with Stoneybatter Pride of Place, were facing the possibility of relegation, going into the teams first Thursday evening fixture of the season away to Lucan Sarsfields at 12th lock, which is not a happy hunting ground for St Brendan’s teams in recent times.

But The Darkest Force started brightly with the two opening scores both scored by the Brady Brothers. Marcus scored first after a Cathal McCormack pass. Derek scored the second after a Lucan player double hopped. Ciaran O’Shea took the free and passed to Brady the younger.

However, the home side scored four points on the spin to make it 0-04 to 0-02, but the bare minimum was restored thanks to a point from Graham ‘The Million Euro Citeog’ Henry after Damien Daly made his 2nd turnover of the evening and Henry received the final pass from Malachi Doyle.

Lucan took a lead that they thought they never surrender after a goal made it 1-06 on the board going into the second 15 minutes of the first half. McCormack took a shot narrowly wide, but the ref spotted a foul on the Galway man, so up stepped Offaly man Joe Kenny to slot over Brendan’s fourth point of the evening.

After another Lucan brace, Derek Brady ensured the game was still in the mix by hitting a goal after Damien Daly won his fifth turnover and drove the ball into the full-forward line. Daly would win a sixth turnover before the half time break with Lucan leading.


Half Time Score: St Brendan’s 1-04 (07) to 1-08 (11) Lucan Sarsfields.


Billy Kelly introduced Gentleman Christopher Hand in the second half. Fresh from taking part in a Double Continuous Ironman Triathlon in Hampshire England over the weekend (i.e. started the Swim at 9am Saturday and finished the 52.4 mile Marathon at 9pm Sunday) John Maguire was still full of running and it was the Cavan Ironman who supplied the final pass to his fellow Breffni Countyman Hand for the shot over the bar, but Lucan had the four point lead back a minute later.

17:11 gone in the second half and it was 1-11 to 1-06 to the home side. Hand again took a score after Graham Henry was pushed in the back when winning a hopball. The hopball occurred when a Lucan player placed his standing leg in play when taking a sideline ball.

Billy Kelly then introduced Lorcan Walsh to the game in place of McCormack and Walsh made his impact known by winning a mark from Mark Redican’s kick-out. Walsh hit the next point with both Brady brothers involved in the build-up.

St Brendan’s had a great chance of a goal when Derek Bradys shot fell short and the goalkeeper palmed the ball straight to Joe Kenny, caught by surprise, Kenny didn’t make the most of the golden opportunity and the ball was cleared, but only as far as Pearse Ryan and another St Brendan’s attack started. In the end Marcus Brady had a hand on his back 20 meters out for a free in. Spotting Christopher Hand unmarked, Derek Brady took the free quickly, but Hand couldn’t get his body in the right position to get the ball in the net and the ball was cleared. The move ended with a Lucan point on the other side. 1-12 (15) to 1-7 (10).

To make matters worse, The Darkest Force went down to 14 men when full back Rory Walsh was sent-off after two bookable offence, both being sickening tackles that were borderline yellow. St Brendan’s were sinking quickly, time to get the shovels out and start work. And work is what the side did. A point came from Joe Kenny, who was desperate for a goal but his rasping shot cleared over the bar instead to make it a four point game.

Two minutes to go and the team were still working hard. Kenny again gave his side some hope when winning a 13-meter free after being fouled catching a Graham Henry long ball. His bid for a goal was scuppered with too many Lucan bodies on the goal line, but Kenny was content to tap over the bar to make it a three-point deficit.

Six minutes of injury time were announced. In the third minute of injury time, Lorcan Walsh played a great diagonal ball to Joe Kenny but his marker dived on the ball and in the process handled the ball on the ground. Calls for Kenny to be penalised for a hand on the back were soundly ignored by the referee and with shades of Seamus Darby in 1982 ringing in his ears, Kenny went for goal. His free in dipped under the crossbar with the goalkeeper three meters off his line to make it a level game with two minutes of injury time to go.

The adrenalin got to the Lucan goalkeeper and his kick out went straight over the sideline. The sideline ball was taken by John Maguire towards Marcus Brady and the Cootehall Midfield Mastero went for the glory, his shot went straight over the bar for a one point St Brendan’s lead.

There was one final opportunity for Lucan to smash St Brendan’s hearts but a crossfield ball was robbed by Damien Daly and the referee whistled up for full time. A miraculous comeback and victory for the St Brendan’s 2nd XV.

A Tremendous victory where Billy Kelly praised the player’s work ethic and never give up attitude. No doubt this will give the team a massive shot in the arm and don’t be surprised if competition for places on the starting XV for the next game at home to Naomh Barrog is just as intense as the on field of battle this evening.


Final Score from 12th Lock: St Brendans 2-10 (16) to 1-12 (15) Lucan Sarsfields.

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May 23

Ladies get Championship hopes back on track

Ladies 1sts v Fingallians 22052019 (7)Wed 22nd May 2019 – Earlier in the year the St Brendan’s Ladies 1st Xv let an 8 point lead slip away on the opening game of the Ladies League against Fingallians. That was a tough lesson and with that in mind the St Brendan’s Ladies 1st XV, sponsored by McGowan’s of Phibsboro, travelled to Balheary to right some wrongs.

The match, played on the pitch closer to Balheary Road, started brightly for the Female Dark Force with a goal from Aisling Newton following a great pass from Aoife Fitzmaurice. But Fingallians attacked gamely despite the early setback, but their shot fell short and was ably dealt with by Karen O’Connell. The ball was worked up the field through Faye Kearney and Roisin McDonald with the final pass to Ursula Murphy for the shot over the bar.

That became 1-02 with a Sinead Morrissey free kick after Shauna Fitzpatrick was fouled collecting the Fingallians kickout. Tara Foy won the next kickout and passed to Roisin McDonald who made it 1-04 to 0-00.

Not content with the point, McDonald added a goal after playing a one-two to Morrissey who finished with a low delicate shot into the net. However, there was no first half shut out because Fingallians got their opening score from a free in 15:30 into the first half. Joan McNulty won O’Connell’s kickout and passed onto Ursula Murphy who found Aisling Newton. Newton proceeded to put the ball between the posts.

A precise sideline kick from by Aoife Fitzmaurice found Newton who played the ball to Sinead Reilly. Reilly danced along the end line and took her shot from an acute angle. The shot was of the highest quality and found the back of the net 3-05 to 0-01.

Reilly notched up a point a minute later after collecting a pass from Faye Kearney, who had won the Fingallians kickout. Fingallians added a second point but in the next attack St Brendan’s hit a fourth goal.

Back from the US, Erin Fadian’s trojan work at the back ensured Fingallians were limited to two first half points. Fadian began a move by intercepting a Fingallians attack and in the end, Shauna Fitzpatrick propelled the ball up and over the bar.

St Brendan’s crowned off a marvellous first half when Sinead Morrissey’s free in was initially going wide, but Roisin McDonald leaped up and did a Diego Maradona Hand Of God to punch the ball in the net for the half time advantage.


Half Time Score: St Brendans 5-07 to 0-02 Fingallians.


The second half began with a point from Roisin McDonald following a turnover by Aoife Watters. Any thought of second half collapse, were promply quashed when Aoife Watters won another turnover which ultimately saw Ursula Murphy in for her first goal.

Karen O’Connell’s bid for a clean sheet ended with Fingallians found the back of her net. However, any thoughts of a quick brace of goals ended with a turnover from Inés Rubio Alcalá Galiano. This timely interception lead to the ball making its way Sinead Reilly. Reilly kept the ball in play and passed to Shauna Fitzpatrick who shot through the Fingallians players legs and into the net for the seventh goal to make the score 7-08 to 1-02.

That became 7-09 with another Newton point following another Joan McNulty turnover. After doing tremendous work in the middle of the field, Aoife Fitzmaurice bid for a score ended when she shot wide, but the referee spotted a foul on her and up stepped Sinead Morrissey with the score from a free to make it 7-10.

Another Newton score made it 7-11 after she turned on a sixpence to beat her marker and shoot over the bar. After watching her brother Sean play for Sligo against Galway in the Connacht Semi-Final last Sunday, Nicola Carrabine won possession and passed to Joan McNulty, who found Kearney. Kearney found McDonald and McDonald completed her hat trick with a goal which went over the head of the goalkeeper.

We still had 12 minutes to go in the game and after another Newton point, from a tight angle, The Fingallians goalkeeper was beaten for a ninth time with Sinead Morrissey getting the goal. With Conor O’Neill absent, Robert Kelly emptied his bench and bought on Christine Dilworth, Catherine Twomey and Cora Travers, replacing Aoife Watters, Shauna Fitzpatrick and Tara Foy.

Five minutes to go and Aisling Newton increased her personal tally to 2-06 with a brace of points, winning the kick out herself for the second point. But there was no tenth goal after Ursula Murphy was fouled in a good position, Sinead Morrissey converted the free in.

A final attack from Fingallians went wide and Karen O’Connells kickout, only her 4th all second half, was the last action of the game with St Brendan’s finally getting a win against the North Siders.

The Female Dark Force are back in Championship action next Wednesday with another road trip this time to Parnells.


Final Score from Balheary: St Brendan’s 9-15 (36) to 1-03 (6) Fingallians.

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May 22

Darragh Donnolly Keeps Brendan’s in game until the end against Kilmacud Crokes

1sts v Kilmacud Crokes 21052019 (1)Tues 21 May 2019 – The St Brendans 1st XV, went into their AFL5 Round 6 game against Kilmacud Crokes, short of several high profile players including Franklin O’Reilly, Paul Coleman, Luke McDonagh and Cormac Mullen. The latter two injured against Ballinteer St Johns nine days ago. Kilmacud Crokes are sitting nicely at the top of AFL5 with the brother of Dubs star Paul Mannion starting today.

Indeed it was the team that gave us Paul Mannion who opened the scoring after five minutes but John Burns gave The Dark Force a level game with a free in after a foul on Ger Bannon. Kilmacud Crokes showed why they are 5 from 5 in AFL5 with a superb exhibition of attacking play, and were on the verge of crowning off a glorious 45 hand pass move with a goal but the forward was penalised for over-carrying. Crokes led 0-03 to 0-01 after 18 minutes.

A goal was inevitable for the away side and after turning over Darragh Donnolly’s kick-out, the ball was worked in and and Donnolly was beaten for goal. But St Brendans did respond when Kilmacud tried to hand pass the ball out of defence, buta hospital pass was hit straight to the Notorious Ryan Egan who passed onto fellow Sligo Man Ciaran Kilcullen (who earlier won a Mark) for a shot over the bar.

Kilmacud hit another brace of points, and again were on the verge of crowning off another glorious 40 hand pass move with a goal, but the forward shot straight into the breadbasket of Darragh Donnolly. St Brendan’s hit a third point from a free in by John Burns, this time it was James McGee who drew the foul.


Half Time Score: St Brendan’s 0-03 to 1-05 Kilmacud Crokes.


Kilmacud Crokes started the second half brightly with a brace of points, seven minutes into the second half and it Kilcullen who shot his second point, this time from a free in after a foul on Niall Prenty. Kilmacud almost ended the game as a contest in the next minute but the shot rasped over the bar, much to Donnolly’s relief.

St Brendans 5th point came thanks to another free in from John Burns after James McGee was tripped collecting a Niall Prenty pass, but was forced off the field with a hamstring injury and replaced by Colin Folan.

17:38 gone in the second half and another Burns free in this time it was Egan who was pushed in the back. That was as good as it got for the home side as another Burns free in drifted wide which summed up St Brendan’s evening.

One positive was the return to action of Hugh Bannon after suffering a nasty concussion in the Championship on April 14th.

Kilmacud hit three unanswered points in the last 10 minutes but finished the game with 14 men when one of their players received a straight red card for a high tackle on Lorcan Bannon.

Next Sundays away encounter against Templeogue Synge Street is now a must win.


Final Score from Longmeadows: St Brendan’s 0-06 to 1-12 Kilmacud Crokes.


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May 13

Dark Force fall short on a very long morning in Ballinteer

1sts v Ballinteer St Johns 12052019 (4)Sun 12th May 2019 – Following Tuesday’s facile win against O’Dwyers, the St Brendans 1st XV travelled to Marley Park in Rathfarnham for what would be, a sterner test against a strong Ballinteer St Johns side. The match, played in Marley Park was due to throw in at midday by instead the ball was thrown in at 12.25pm.

Three minutes gone and John Burns had The Dark Force on the board with a 14-meter free in, after James McGee was pushed in the back. Ballinteer equalised soon afterwards, but Burns was on target once again with a second 14-meter free, this time after Niall Prenty had his arm dragged back when in a good position. Once again The Tangerines equalised.

Burns hit a third consecutive 14-meter free in after McGee’s intended hand pass to Lorcan Bannon saw him almost get a foot in the chest, the Ballinteer player was yellow carded and Burns converted the free in.

In the second quarter, Ballinteer got a foothold in the game with a brace of points, but Declan Jennings was forced to make two early substitutions, with both wing backs, Cormac ‘Skins’ Mullen (calf) and Luke ‘The Miracle Worker’ McDonagh (Facial), taken off and replaced of Adrian ‘The Abbey’ Murphy and Stephen Durkan.

Both injuries ate up a lot of time and in the last three minutes a shot by Ballinteer was adjudged to have been foot-blocked and a penalty was awarded and converted.

St Brendan’s responded well with a point from ‘The Abbey’ after a mark from a Darragh Donnelly kick-out by Ciaran Kilcullen. Lorcan Bannon reduced the gap to four points with a point after a pass from Lorcan Allen.

After 8 minutes 45 seconds of injury time, The Tangerines ensured a 5 point interval lead with a point with the last kick.


Half Time Score: St Brendans 0-05 to 1-07 Ballinteer St Johns.


Although Brendans started the second half with two wides, Brendan Brogan cut the gap to four with a point after a turnover from Ger Bannon and a final pass by James McGee. The Four Star from Milltown made a great solo-run and reached the penalty area when he was chopped down for a penalty. However, John Burns, with the three-step run up, kicked over for a point. 1-07 to 0-07.

Both sides traded two points, with Brogan scoring for the Dark Force after Ger Bannon played a free in to Niall Prenty after he was fouled when winning a mark and Denis ‘The Killarney Menace’ scoring the second point after Prenty gained thirty yards with a great solo-run.

The home side hit three successive points to get a foothold of the game with ten minutes of normal time to go. Adrian ‘The Abbey’ Murphy had to be taken off after falling awkwardly on his ankle and was replaced by John Quinn and the Tourlestane Terrier made the perfect impact by kicking St Brendan’s 10th point following great Kilcullen work.

With less than three minutes to go, plus injury time, Loran Bannon hit St Brendan’s 11th point of the game after Donnolly’s kick-out was won for a mark by Brendan Brogan and passed to Lorcan Bannon. Bannon executed a one-two with Prenty and shot over the bar.

The Dark Force had a great chance of drawing or even winning the game when a vertical pass by John Quinn found James McGee but he couldn’t manage to get a strong fist on the ball and it was cleared off the line by Ballinteer. John Burns recovered the ball and drew the foul which he converted to make it 1-12 to 0-12 going into injury time.

The Tangerines seemed to play too much keep ball in midfield and when a kick pass came, Ger Bannon fouled the receiver, the free in was converted and a four point lead, four minutes into injury time.

Nine minutes into injury time and a crucial turnover was won by The Rob Kearney of Knockmore Jason Clarke, which resulted in a free in after John Burns was pushed in the back. Eleven minutes into injury time and an intended long ball for Gentleman Christopher Hand by Denis ‘The Rossie Menace’ Galvin, sailed over the bar instead for a two point deficit.

There was one more twist in the game as the Ballinteer Goalkeeper was booked for time wasting and a throw ball was given on the 20-meter line. Burns won the hop ball but James McGee could not recover and was unable to force his marker over the end line.

After 14 minutes of injury time played and a minute after 2pm, it was Ballinteer St Johns who won and celebrated the win the same way Manchester City won the Premier League later in the afternoon.

It was without a doubt a matter of inches that separated defeat from victory. Next up is a home tie against Kilmacud Crokes (5-0 so far) on May 23rd.


Final score from Marley Park: St Brendan’s 0-14 to 1-13 Ballinteer St John’s

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May 08

Denis Galvin in menacing form against O’Dwyers

20190507_192855ZTues 07th May 2019 – Focus returned to the league for the St Brendans football 1st XV and the first Tuesday evening game of the season with O’Dwyers of Balbriggan the visitors to Longmeadows. During the warm up, team manager Justin McCormack kept reminding the team of the 0-13 to 0-07 defeat inflicted by O’Dwyers last year to ensure that such a defeat does not happen again.

Any anxiety McCormack may have felt evaporated when Lorcan Allen won a turnover, got fouled in the process, played his free to Niall Prenty who found Brendan Brogan to calmly slot the ball into the net. John Burns won the O’Dwyers kickout with a mark and played the ball to Denis ‘The Killarney Menace’ Galvin whose shot hit the upright but dropped straight into the breadbasket of James McGee and the Milltown Four Star’s low shot hit the O’Dwyers net for the second time 2-00 to 0-00 after three minutes.

Any thought of The Dark Force getting a third goal inside four minutes ended when Kevin Curry saw his shot saved by the O’Dwyers full back for a 45. Burns shot fell short and the clearance went to Lorcan Bannon then onto Niall Prenty and the Prince Of Ballyhaunis took his shot over the bar.

The score became 2-02 to no score with Ger Bannon pointing after Kevin Curry drew a foul and played the free to Bannon. However, O’Dwyers got back in the game when an opportunist shot, fell short and ended in the Brendan’s net. 2-02 to 1-00.

Another O’Dwyers point followed. Denis ‘The Killarney Menace’ Galvin was back on the board with a fisted shot over the bar. Burns won the kickout with a mark, passed to Ger Bannon and the shot over the bar. 2-04 to 1-01.

A Burns free in fell short to Galvin, but as he retrieved the ball, he was pulled down in the penalty area for a penalty, which Burns prompty converted, three steps and bang with the citeog in the net.

That score became 3-05 to 1-01 thanks to James McGee after a good passage of play involving Franklin ‘Kepa’ O’Reilly and Kevin Curry. A fourth goal was bound to happen and it occurred when Burns whipped in a long ball which was dropping into the goalkeepers arms, but Galvin was on Hand (of God) to punch the ball (a la Maradona in 1986) into the O’Dwyers net.

It was a case of how many goals St Brendan’s would get. Again Burns supplyed the final pass, this time to James McGee who moved this way and that and calmly slotted the ball into the net. Burns then hit an ostentatious shot that left Declan Jennings gasping in disbelief, which ended over the bar. Colm Harte forced an O’Dwyers shot wide and Darragh Donnolly’s kick-out was the last action of the first half and a St Brendan’s lead.


Half Time Score: St Brendan’s 5-06 (21) to 1-01 (04) O’Dwyers.


The second half began in typical St Brendans fashion with a point in the opening attack thanks to John Burns who won the kickout and did most of the work himself, before playing a 1-2 with Niall Prenty. Indeed The Prince of Ballyhaunis was on hand with the next attack after collecting a pass from Luke ‘The Miracle Worker’ McDonagh and passing to the onrushing Ger Bannon and over the bar 5-08 to 1-01.

Darragh Donnolly was determined to ‘Emulate Karen O’Connell’ and concede no score all half, and produced a spectacular save off a shot after two O’Dwyers balls fell short. The second of those short balls was the catalyst for St Brendans 9th point scored by Brendan Brogan with substitute Ronan Cillian also involved in the build-up.

Goal number six was inevitable thanks to Lorcan Bannon when John Burns put too much well on a fist pass to Brogan but Lorcan Bannon as there at the right place to slot the ball into the net. It took all of 10 minutes for Darragh Donnolly to get his first kick-out of the second half which was marked by Burns, passed to McDonagh and finally to Brogan for the point.

Justin McCormack then unleashed several subs including The Notorious Ryan Egan, Gentleman Christopher Hand and Cormac ‘Skins’ Mullen and it was the 1st sub who passed to the 3rd sub and onto John Burns for a cheeky lob over the keepers head and into the net for the seventh time.

Donnollys dream of emulating O’Connell were almost derailed when the referee gave a free to O’Dwyers for a push by Lorcan Allen, but the adrenalin got the better of O’Dwyer’s player who blasted his shot wide. A free out ensued for taking a free from the wrong place and Colm Harte took the ball and played it 50 yards to Lorcan Allen. Allen found Ronan Cillian who placed his shot over the bar. That was Cillian’s last action because he limped off with a facial injury.

The game fizzled out afterwards for the final 10 minutes with one more point scored by John Burns from a free in. However St Brendan’s would finish with 14 men in injury time when The Notorious Ryan Egan got a black card, having used all six subs with Stephen Durkin from Sligo the 6th sub.

It didn’t matter much because St Brendans had long ended the contest with dominant display in the first half. Darragh Donnolly did achieve what Karen O’Connell did with the Ladies team many times in going a full half of football without conceding a score. But St Brendan’s will be in for a more stern test next Sunday at midday against Ballinteer St Johns where victory will leapfrog the Dark Force over the Tangerines in AFL5.


Final Score form Longmeadows: St Brendans 7-13 (34) to 1-01 (04) O’Dwyer’s.

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