Piltown: Super Six for Girls

GAELIC FOOTBALL - Piltown parish primary schools have now succeeding in bringing six county primary schools titles home since 2008 when Owning/Templeorum beat Kilmanagh in the Roinn B County final at the Nuncio Road pitch of James Stephens on Saturday. Owning/Templeorum school population covers less than half the parish and this was their third title and arguably their best yet. Having already suffered defeat to Kilmanagh earlier in the league campaign, the local girls were going in as underdogs similar to the Under-21 Camogie team the week before. The first half was a war of attrition as both defences dominated. Sophie Holden breached the Kilmanagh defence to give O/T a 1-0 to 0-0 lead but this was soon equalised by Claire Quigley. Despite a world of possession O/T could not add to the score before half time, but took solace in the fact that they were playing nice football.

GAELIC FOOTBALL - Piltown parish primary schools have now succeeding in bringing six county primary schools titles home since 2008 when Owning/Templeorum beat Kilmanagh in the Roinn B County final at the Nuncio Road pitch of James Stephens on Saturday. Owning/Templeorum school population covers less than half the parish and this was their third title and arguably their best yet. Having already suffered defeat to Kilmanagh earlier in the league campaign, the local girls were going in as underdogs similar to the Under-21 Camogie team the week before. The first half was a war of attrition as both defences dominated. Sophie Holden breached the Kilmanagh defence to give O/T a 1-0 to 0-0 lead but this was soon equalised by Claire Quigley. Despite a world of possession O/T could not add to the score before half time, but took solace in the fact that they were playing nice football.

The second half started off much the same, so something special was needed to break the deadlock. That’s when captains have to stand up to the plate. O/T had two, Máire Beth Kirby (Owning) and Laura Power (Templeorum). In the seventh minute, Máire worked tirelessly to score a superb individual goal. This was quickly followed by a lovely point from Laura. Advantage O/T. From there to the end O/T dominated and when Laura Power got her goal, it was clear there would be only one winner. It finished Owning/Templeorum 3-6 Kilmanagh 1-0.

This was a superb team performance. We had the players who gained experience with the club during the year and who divided all the scores between and this was mixed with the fabulous enthusiasm of the younger players whose performances defied their years.

One of the experienced players Sophie Holden who along with Laura Power were the only representatives of Templeorum deservedly earned the Player of the Match award. The midfield dynamo was everywhere; one wondered how you could fit such a powerful engine into something that size. Yet they were all stars. From Laura Falconer in goal who made some magnificent saves including a penalty at a vital time to the defence led by the powerful Jenny O’Dea, to a tenacious midfield of Kirby and Power to a persistent forward line where Marlise Flynn made good use of the handpass. When subs were required they showed no fear of responsibility. Great credit must go to Owning principal, Pat O’Gorman on producing yet another team that knows how to play Girls Gaelic Football. The game was originally scheduled for Nowlan Park, but cancelled due to the weather, but when you are champions, it doesn’t matter where it was played. Hopefully, this can encourage more people to get involved at club level and drive this unprecedented era of success to new heights.

Team: Laura Falconer, Patsy Kenny, Jenny O’Dea, Chloe Walsh, Olivia Ronan, Aine Doyle, Máire Beth Kirby (1-0, Joint Captain), Laura Power (1-3, Joint Captain), Marlise Flynn, Sophie Holden (1-1), Melissa Byrne, Sarah Jayne Brophy (0-2, 1 free).

Subs: Ciara Dunne, Bríbhanna Doody, Niamh Whelan, Mollie O’Dwyer Bainisteoir: Pat O’Gorman

JUVENILE HURLING TROPHY AT LAST - It’s November and Piltown juvenile hurling finally brought home a trophy in 2012, when the Under-12’s won the Carrigeen Eddie Quinn Cup on the astro turf for the first time since 2006. It was a tremendous battle between the local boys and neighbours Mooncoin. The game was dominated by two tigerish defences and when they were breached both teams boasted two outstanding goalkeepers who were really the stars of the night. This was one of the best games ever seen in Carrigeen and anyone who wants to be involved in Piltown juvenile hurling should have witnessed it as it would give some hope at the end of a torrid year. Piltown led by 2-2 to 1-1 at half time with Aaron Kinsella in sparkling form in goal and Captain Billy Morahan leading by example at the back. At the start of the second half, Cian Kinsella was brought back into space and his goal a minute into the new half seemed to give Piltown a good edge. However, Mooncoin responded well and had a purple patch, but the extra space Kinsella was getting helped his game as he added two more vital points and a Mooncoin defensive error caused by a persistent of Declan Duggan helped Piltown win by 4-4 to 4-1. Great credit goes to both teams. As parents and supporters were whining about the “cold of Carrigeen”, both teams went about their business in an enthusiastic fashion and not a single tracksuit bottom, tights, gloves or unnecessary hoodie was to be seen. Brave hurling at its best. Panel: Billy Morahan (Capt), Aaron Kinsella, James Phelan, Oran Brophy, Cian Kinsella, Oísin Coffey, Eoin Fitzgerald, Robert Tobin, Declan Duggan, Dylan Wall, Conor Kinsella, Niall Gannon, Senan McDonald. Mentors: Nobby Coffey, Shane Kinsella, James Norris

THE SECRET OF CAMOGIE SUCCESS - Piltown Camogie Club’s AGM will take place on Wednesday 28th November at 8pm in the GAA Complex. They will review a fantastic year which follows on several excellent years since winning the Junior title in 2008 where the titles won in the last five years include eight championships, a County Féile, a County Under-16 Pink Day blitz title, County and Leinster Community Games titles as well as National bronze, a primary schools title and an All-Star for Katie Power. In that time at Inter county level club players have won 2 inter-provincial medals, 17 Leinster medals, not mention 5 Ashbourne Cup medals and 1 Ashbourne Shield.

This year teams contested five county finals winning the Under-14 Féile, Under-16 Roinn A, Minor Roinn B and Under-21 Roinn B titles. The one glitch was defeat in the Under-14 Roinn B Championship final. This is not to mention either that the Under-16’s were beaten in the county final of the Pink Day Blitz, the Minors and Under-21’s were unbeaten all year, the Under-12’s won the B League and the Under-10s and Under-8’s had a great time.

In competitive games from Under-14 to adult in 2012, they have won 31, drew 0 and lost 10, a 75% success rate which is put in perspective by the equivalent record of 37% in hurling (23-2-37).

The club caters for girls seven years and upwards? They have not bought in to the term “academy” used by many sports to make super sports stars out of infants. Like boys GAA, they do have to compete with other sports especially soccer with one player rated one of the best in the country for her age group and also rugby. They also have to compete with athletics as the club boasts some of best athletic prospects in the country plus they have to cope with players leaving the country, moving away to college and cope with the many other distractions which befall young people in modern Ireland. What is their secret? You won’t find out by reading here, but you might find out by attending the AGM. All parents and camogie supporters are invited to attend.

POST PRIMARY SCHOOLS GAA - Down this part of the county, it is often overlooked that young hurlers from the deep South of the county actually do play secondary schools hurling at a high level. De La Salle (Waterford) beat Gaelcholaiste Mhuire(Cork) by 2-15 to 0-10 in the Dean Ryan Cup Final for Senior Colleges Hurling. Two Piltown players were introduced in that game, Shane Walsh and Ian Long, but of whom were involved in the 2011 Kilkenny Tony Forristal squad. The team also featured a number of Mooncoin players. Both Shane and Ian are committed Piltown players and combined with recent successes of Carrick CBS who were backboned by Piltown players, it just highlights that despite results Piltown juvenile club does boast some excellent young players who hold their own outside the county and province.

Meanwhile in Munster Camogie action Scoil Mhuire (Carrick-On-Suir) beat Clonakilty (Cork) in Clonakilty in the Munster Senior Colleges Camogie League/Championship. Fourteen girls from Piltown were on the starting fifteen and a few more on the bench. This is really no surprise given Piltown’s current record in underage Camogie, but it is certainly an incentive for county selectors further up the county to look at colleges matches outside the county and province.On the Girls Gaelic Football front, Jennifer Norris, Kelly Ann Doyle, Lorraine Long and Sinead McCarthy starred for Scoil Mhuire (Carrick-On-Suir) who beat Killorglin Community College from County Kerry in the Munster Senior Colleges championship by 8-12 to 1-1. Yes, it is true! Your eyes do not deceive you. Piltown and Kilkenny girls on a Gaelic Football team that hammered a Kerry team! What is the world coming too?

GAELIC FOOTBALL PRESENTATION - Former Kilkenny hurling star James “Cha” Fitzpatrick presented the Under-14 Gaelic Football Roinn B champions, Piltown with their medals in the GAA Complex on Friday night on another proud night for Piltown GAA. It is the third county football title won underage in the last three years (2010 under-14 and 2011 under-16) by the Piltown club and it is 21st Gaelic Football county championship title from schools to adult won by Piltown since 1976.

Panel: Ronan Ryan (Capt), Andrew Long, John Kenny, Oísin Brophy, James Kirby, Oran Brophy, Shane Whittle, Robert Tobin, Jamie Norris, John Burke, Darragh Walsh, Cian Kinsella, Sean Power, Conor Friend, Richard Norris, Evan Murphy, Alex Byrne, Kieran Reid, Adam Grace, David Tobin, Kieran Flynn, Scott Bourke, Billy Morahan, Aaron Kinsella

There is no doubt that Gaelic Football is a success story in Piltown and its origins go back to the arrival in the parish of Kerryman Dan Kenny the former principal of Piltown National School. His legacy is a lasting one, masterminding three adult championships. The recent run of success though had its seeds sown in 2008 when the club won the Under-14 Roinn B title beating Rower Inistioge 4-7 to 0-3 having won the Primary Schools Roinn B in 2006 with much the same squad

2008 Panel: Christopher Shum (Capt), David Kinsella, Ryan Gallagher, Thomas Talbot, Damien Foley, Eoin Dunphy, Kevin Walsh, Michael O’Dwyer, Tadgh Whelan, Donal Ryan, Dean Brophy, Nollag Brophy, Richie Phelan, Niall Norris, Shane Doody, Jamie Murphy, Francis O’Brien, Aidan Ryan, Tom Kenny, Ian Flynn, Michael Dunne

It could have all ended that day. The following year, the squad was to lose a dozen players and was now up in Roinn A facing the might of the City teams and the stronger country teams at that time. Nobody wanted to manage them fearing the beatings. Fortunately, one person stood up to the plate and managed the team ensuring that the team lined out in all their games, both league and championship. At times some dedicated mothers who kindly drove the boys to matches found themselves being whisked into action if only to get on the pitch with a bottle of water. To compound things some of the remaining senior players made themselves unavailable for several matches as they concentrated on other sports. The defeats did come as expected but the bigger picture was that the players were gaining in experience and confidence each time they went out as they got nearer to their illustrious opponents and they were playing a nice brand of football. The weakest team on paper lined out against John Lockes in Callan on Valentine’s Day, 2009, Aidan Nugent scoring a single point in a 0-1 to 5-3 defeat.

Team: Aran Gallagher, Shane Walsh, Aidan Ryan, Peter Tobin, Tom Kenny, Michael O’Dwyer, Ian Long, Aidan Nugent, Craig Kennington, David Norris, Dylan Kirby, Michael Dunne, Ronan Ryan. Jamie Norris, Darragh Walsh

However, paper often doesn’t mean a thing in sport, Everyone single one of those players have won at least one county football medal and a dozen have won two county football medals since. Were they destroyed by the experience? It would appear not. They grew with the experience. In sport, the vision can be a most important ingredient in success. Piltown Camogie has been proven to have visionaries, It seems, so too has Piltown Gaelic Football.

BUSINESS PLANNING - Piltown Community Enterprise are running a Business Planning Workshop in conjunction with Kilkenny County Enterprise Board (KCEB) and South East Business Innovation Centre (SEBIC). The date is Wednesday 28th November at 7.30pm at Piltown Community Centre. All are welcome. Booking is essential as places are limited. Contact: 051-643152 or 087-2191808 (Gerri) or email piltown@eircom.net.

SELF ESTEEM -Dr. Akhtar Alisyed will give a talk on “Self Esteem” in Piltown N.S. on Thursday 29th November at 7:30pm. All are welcome. Entry is free of charge. Voluntary donations to the school on the night would be much appreciated.

MIND YOUR OWN MIND - A positive holistic approach to wellbeing for teens (16 upwards) takes place at Kildalton College on Saturday 1st December 10am. Includes drumming, creative writing, drama, laughter, Yoga, brain training and EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique or Tapping). For registration call Anne at 087-9878182. Limited spaces available. There is no charge