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Ballyclare Primary School

Girls' Indoor Football Heat

8th Mar 2023

Another of the annual Allianz Cumann na mBunscol 5-a-side Girls’ Indoor Gaelic Football heats for primary schools was held in Omagh’s excellent Station Centre.  The competition got underway with 8 local schools competing for the honour of winning this particular heat. Roscavey, St Joseph’s Drumquin, St Eugene’s Victoria Bridge, St Oliver Plunkett’s Beragh, St Patrick’s Gortin, Tummery, Knocknagor and Sacred Heart Tattyreagh were all there to do battle where there could be only one winner.  An extremely high level of skill and sporting behaviour was exhibited from all involved.

The format of the day’s play was a Round-Robin series of matches. The first game of Roscavey v Drumquin really set the tone for the rest of the day’s play, a game which saw the Drumquin team emerge as winners, with Madie McLaughlin leading their attack well up front.

The girls from Tummery and Gortin went toe-to-toe in an absorbing match.  Play ebbed and flowed, and when the final whistle blew, the Dromore girls had the spoils for their first match, despite the brilliant efforts of both Gortin mid-fielders Aimee Ward and Katie McCullagh.

An exciting 2-2 draw between Victoria Bridge and Beragh, where Caoimhe McGarvey and Emily McDaid tried their best in the Beragh colours, was followed by a Tattyreagh victory over Knocknagor which brought the Round 1 fixtures to a close.   

Round 2 fixtures began with a strong Drumquin team, with Áine Maguire outstanding in goals, really laying down a marker of their intent by getting the better of the Mr Conroy’s Beragh girls. 

Tummery, with Rosie O’Neill and Tess McQuaid to the fore, did likewise, as they comfortably saw off the challenge of a fancied Tattyreagh side.  

The Round 2 fixtures were completed by an exciting 1-1 draw between Gortin and Knocknagor, with Macie McKinney and Shaina Rose McFadden really playing their hearts out for the Trillick side.

Round 3 began with an explosive start, where the Beragh derby between Roscavey and St Oliver Plunketts went comfortable the way of Mr O’Kane’s Roscavey girls, where Dearbhla Quinn and Ava Mullin shone brightly. 

The Tattyreagh v Gortin game was a much tighter affair, which ended in a 1-1 draw. 

Drumquin copper fastened their position at the top of Group 1 with a 2-0 victory over a gallant Victoria Bridge team who had strong performers in Ashley Kelly and Erin McCool.

The last round robin game also saw Tummery claim the Group 2 top spot, when they had a convincing 4-0 win over Knocknagor. 

After the 3 exciting rounds of fixtures, Drumquin and Victoria Bridge emerged from Group 1, whilst Tummery and Tattyreagh qualified for the semi-finals from Group 2.  The other teams who were knocked out at this point, played off a few more games among themselves, ensuring all the girls got plenty of football – which is also what the morning was all about. 

The day’s first semi-final pitched rivals Drumquin with a strong Tattyreagh side.  In keeping with the day’s play, this contest didn’t disappoint.  A pulsating contest saw the play go from end to end.  Despite the best efforts of Tattyreagh’s Meabh Harley and Emma Starrs in mid-field, Mr Kelly’s girls powered their way to a 2-1 victory, leaving Mr McElholm to think about their next competition, having bowed out as deserving semi-finalists.

Semi number two saw Mr McCrystall’s Tummery face off a strong Victoria Bridge team who represented their school and their various feeder clubs really well all day.  The Dromore girls were just too strong for their opponents, edging a 3-1 result and so setting up a showdown in the final between Drumquin and Tummery. 

These 2 teams had shown high quality football all morning, and they were to play the final match of the day in a winner-takes-all clash.  The level of expectation and anticipation was high.  Both Drumquin and Tummery played some tremendous football and displayed a full-blooded effort.  An early Tummery goal really spiced things up.  Try as they could, the Drumquin girls couldn’t find a way past the opposing keeper, whilst Tummery were able to add another goal, extending their lead to a 2-0 advantage.  The Tummery girls were able to defend their lead for the remainder of the game, keeping the brave efforts of the Drumquin girls at bay, thereby securing Tummery a place in the Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Tyrone County Final to be held on 14th March in Cookstown.    

Our thanks to our referee Brian McGinn for his expert officiating, and to Mickey Quinn (Treasurer) for arranging these fantastic competitions.  A final word of thanks must go to the Station Centre for the use of their excellent facilities.