Castlecomer: Legends return to old stamping ground

SCHOOL FINALS - The Boys’ N.S. hurling league came to a conclusion on Wednesday 25th and Thursday 25th October in the school field at lunch break before two of the best supported finals ever.

SCHOOL FINALS - The Boys’ N.S. hurling league came to a conclusion on Wednesday 25th and Thursday 25th October in the school field at lunch break before two of the best supported finals ever.

Maybe word leaked that local legends Martin “Goggy” Brennan, Michael “Cloney” Brennan and Peter O’ Donovan on Wednesday and on Thursday Seamus “Curley” Farrell, Davy Buggy, Mikey O’ Neill, Jason Brennan and Seamus “Freddy” Coogan were going to attend, but the big crowds on both days including parents, grandparents and family and friends must surely have been glad they attended what proved to be a slow starting, tense Shield Final between Christopher Korff and Billy O’ Neill which erupted into a feast of skill, speed, fitness, bravery and heroism, especially in the third quarter. The build up was huge. Having met twice already in September and October with a win each under their belt, the early morning toss for jerseys or choice of ends and photo call had all the signs that no quarter was going to be asked or given. There was a whiff of Australia blowing in the wind when, by mutual consent, the captains agreed to adopt four quarter timing. The stage was set. Referee, Mr. O’ Donovan – Community school teacher – blew the whistle for the throw in. The formalities were over. The game was on. Nerves were shown by both sides but once the 1-0 to 0-1 first quarter passed, the game opened up and matched the best of traditions over the years in the Shield final. The second quarter proved decisive as Christopher scored 1-2 without reply. This quarter ultimately decided the result of the contest. The third quarter was even with 2-1 being scored by each team. Kealan Ring and Justin Brennan’s goals and Christopher’s point for the eventual winners was matched by Vincent Brennan and Billy O’ Neill’s goals and Billy’s point for the eventual losers. It was ding-dong thrilling hurling at this stage.The final quarter was equally exciting which resulted in Justin Brennan getting a cracker of a goal and Christopher getting a classy point for the winners with Billy O’ Neill replying with a point and second class boy, Evan Harding getting a classy point from the right wing after a jinking solo run to finish the scoring The final score read: Christopher Korff 5-4, Billy O’ Neill 2-5. For the winners Christopher Korff won the “man of the match” award sponsored and presented by Davy Buggy. Kealan Ring and Darragh O’ Rourke and two goal hero, Justin Brennan were just as good for the winners. Eoghan Moore and Jack Coogan Burke played well also while goalie, Oisín Dwyer O’ Neill excelled not for the first time in this league and is a real find. For the losers Billy O’ Neill was excellent as was Liam Holland, Dean Bray, Tirnan O’ Neill and Adam Woodford, Darragh Normoyle and Evan Harding, grandson of All-Star, Michael “Cloney” Brennan. OFFICIALS: Mr. O’ Donovan, referee; umpires John Callinan, Donal Carroll, Conor O’ Dwyer and Niall McMahon. TEAMS: Christopher Korff (capt), Kealan Ring, Liam Kenny, Justin Brennan, Richard Murphy, Darragh O’ Rourke, Oisín Dwyer O’ Neill, Lewis Oates, David Allen, Eoghan Moore, Jack Coogan Burke. Billy O’ Neill, Liam Holland, Dean Bray, Ben Holden, Vincent Brennan, Tirnan O’ Neill, Evan Harding, Adam Woodford, Stephen Brennan, Darragh Normoyle, Aaron Walsh. Referee Davy Buggy blew the start of the Cup Final on Thursday after Amhrán na bhFiann was played. The game lived up to pre-match high expectations. Kevin Brennan and Dan Coogan led by example from the start. Scores came early and often. Beautiful passages of play delighted the big and appreciative crowd. Kevin’s team marginally dominated the first two quarters but Dan’s team took control in the third quarter to leave the teams level on 4-5 to 4-5 going into the last quarter. Dan’s team went ahead for the first time and led by five points with three minutes ago. His team was playing with the hill so victory seemed a real likelihood. He had wonderful support from Kevin Holland getting 1-1 and being the joint “man of the match” winner along with Jamie Maher on the winning team Young Shane Coogan, in defence for Kevin Brennan, never gave up. He cleared some great ball up the field especially when their team found themselves five points behind. Kevin Brennan – Shefflin like ghosted clear deep into enemy territory. With Coogan, Kevin Holland, Owen Comerford Jones and Joey Rowe hitting a purple patch, captain Kevin Brennan hit two great goals despite goalie Kevin Brennan (4th Class and not a misprint ) unluckily parrying both piledrivers. Dan Coogan’s team had almost certain victory cruelly snatched away. Dan was immense in the final and scored 6-4, incidentally the third highest score in a final since modern records began in the Peter O’ Donovan versus Shane Cadigan 1996 final. Winning captain Kevin Brennan scored 6-5 in the final and is now second highest scorer to winning captain, Trevor Rowe who scored 7-4 in the 2003 final. Trevor’s record will be hard to surpass. Mr. Seamus Farrell told the boys that he attended the “Old School” just inside the railings facing Maryville in the chapel yard from second to fifth class and attended the new school when in sixth class. He hurled in the Boys’ school field just like his grandson, Shane Coogan. Seamus is best remembered for scoring the winning goal against the “Near South” in the County Junior semi final in Thomastown in 1958. He was part of a wonderful Castlecomer team that went on to win the county final against Knocktopher. This team qualified for the county senior final in 1959. In 1959 also , the parish primary school team entered a new era and although losing the 1959 Roinn A final, made sure in 1960 and 1961 when they won the Roinn A double. The primary schools’ Roinn A title has eluded us since but 2013 is another year, another opportunity to strive for excellence. The individual excellence awards will be awarded after the Hallowe’en break. We hope to publish details of these awards in due course.

ERIN’S OWN CROAGH PATRICK CLIMB - Erin’s Own GAA second annual climb of Croagh Patrick will take place on the weekend of the 17th/18th November next. If you are interested in partaking in this climb and social weekend contact Billy Moran on 087 2683178. The club have sponsorship cards available to all those travelling and climbing. This year part of the proceeds from the fundraising will be given to The Castlecomer Lourdes Invalid Fund.

BAG PACK - A sincere thanks to all who helped with the Bag Pack last weekend in Tescos, Carlow. The amount raised goes towards the day to day running of the club. Well done to all. UNDER 21 CHAMPIONSHIP - Our under 21s take on St. Lactains of Freshford this Saturday at 2 pm in Jenkinstown. Please come along and support the lads in this quarter final of the Northern Championship

LIBRARY LATEST - Congratulations to all who took part in the Library Halloween Fancy Dress parade last week, over 100 attended. We have two exhibitions during November – “Discover Lifelines” where famous people write about their favourite Poems. Ann Farrell will display her Wooden Art Pieces until November 17th. The Kids Book Club will meet on Tuesday 6th November at 3.30, bring along your latest good read and share it with our group! Open to boys and girls aged 8-12 years. The Christmas Shoebox appeal closing date is November 10th. We are now taking bookings or our free exhibition space for 2013, ring 4440561 for information.

MEDUGORJE PRAYER GROUP - The monthly mass of peace and rosary is on Monday November 12th at 7.30 p.m. in the Oratory, Castlecomer Community School. All are welcome.

YOUNG PRIESTS SOCIETY - St. Joseph’s Young Priests Society hold a meeting on Friday at 9.30 a.m. in the Family Room, Church of the Immaculate Conception.

WHISTING THE NIGHT AWAY - Big winners in the weekly Whist Drive were: Top Score: Owen Salmon, 1st Lady: Maureen Coady, 2nd Lady: Nano Brennan, 1st Gent: Gerry Kelly, 2nd Gent:Margaret Brennan. Raffle prize winners: 1st Nora Fisher, 2nd Ena Wallace,3rd Margaret Brennan, 4th Gerry Kealy. 5th Seamus Hennessy. Whist continues every Friday night at 8.30pm in the Community Hall, Castlecomer. All are welcome.

ATHLETES SET FOR TRIP TO GARDEN COUNTY - The Kilkenny County B Cross Country Championships commenced in Kilmacow on Sunday. Almost thirty Castlecomer athletes travelled to take part and the strength of their team efforts was reflected in the five team bronze medals, and an individual silver as well as a bronze medal earned - all secured it should be acknowledged on a day of particularly cruel winter weather. Molly O’Dornan and Leah Brennan set the bar high when they competed in the U-8 race - Molly was the silver medallist and Leah finished in 5th place. Michael Brennan and Joey Ryan ran well in the Boys U-8 race. The Under 10 girls collected the first bronze medal - despite the loss of Amelie Bolger to illness, Katie Clarke (4th) led the team home, immediately followed by Sarah Brophy; the equally brave efforts of Aoibhinn Brophy and Caoimhe O’Reilly who completed the team ensured the bronze medal 3rd team position. The U-10 boys followed suit - Cathal O’Reilly was first home in fourth place - Tommy Coogan, Oisin Conry and Liam Doyle were the dogged and determined trio who completed this commendable team performance - and helped win the second team bronze medal. U-12 races followed - Aoife Cahalan’s fourth place, consolidated by Ellen Buggy, Sinead Morrissey and Eimear Stone who supported each other to finish solidly from 12th to 15th places, brought bronze number three. Another fourth placed individual, Killian Hogan, paved the way for the Boys U-12 bronze team medal - Nicky Connolly followed closely in 6th, while team solidarity, with Kevin Holland (15), Jack Buggy (16) and Louis Feehan (18), ensured success in the quest for the fourth medal. Niamh Morrissey ran bravely as Castlecomer’s sole representative in the U-14 Girls race - Maeve Delaney too being forced out by illness. The U-14 Boys completed the medal haul - Ross Connolly’s impressive third place earning him an individual bronze. James Buggy and Adam Jacob finished 8th and 9th - again the strength of the supporting placings essential to the team success. Tested by both low temperature and heavy precipitation, these runners displayed a toughness which belied their youth. They will get a chance to do it all again in the U-9 to U-15 races in a few weeks - it can hardly come soon enough. Very best wishes to athletes heading to Leinster Championships in Rathdrum Co. Wicklow next Sunday.

ERINS OWN GIRLS GFC - The inaugural season of Girls Gaelic Football has just been completed and it can only be described as a complete success. It has given the girls in Castlecomer the opportunity to experience the GAA and be part of the biggest sporting body in Castlecomer. Since starting in April with a registration of 80 plus girls on the back of the Gaelic for Mums initiative that was held in Erins Own in Nov 2011 this has only gone from strength to strength. Age groups consisted of U-8,U-10,U-12 ,U-14 & U-16 with all training on a Monday night on a weekly basis. The opportunity to be part of Erins Own, mix and meet with friends plus learn to work as a team playing Gaelic Football was one of the first goal the ten volunteers set ourselves back in April .That certainly been achieved. The Club would like to thank those initial volunteers who set up the committee and became coaches, Geraldine Holohan, Olga Kerr, Tommy Nolan, Diedre Owens, Maria Brophy, Marie Brennan, Fiona Maher, Georgina Smyth, John Cahalan, Linda Ring, Nicola Mc Donald & Brenda Downey. We look forward to your continued involvement next year. Under 8’s = This group made great progress at training and have seen them all develop new skills. No matches were played as there were no other clubs at this age group. Well done to all who participated. Unders 10 - The U-10’s were able to compete in several blitzes and friendlies with many good results and again a steady improvement was seen throughout the season. Congratulations to all who took part. UNDER 12 - This group really progressed rapidly and were able to compete in the first U-12 league, playing six matches which included a good few wins. Congratulations to the whole panel. UNDER 14 & 16 = This combined group showed great improvement since beginning in April. The skill level has improved dramatically in such a short time.The U-14’s were able to play in a regular league winning a number of matches. The U-16’s continued to train hard but the lack of teams in this age group in Kilkenny meant there weren’t many matches. We hope to be able to enter the Carlow league next year. Congratulations to all of this panel. All in all we have a strong foundation to move the club forward over the next few years. New players are welcome. Training for U-8, 10 &12 will re commence in Jan or Feb with a date to be announced. Due to popular demand U-14 & U-16 training will continue over winter. Details to follow. We hope to hold an end of year meeting in the next couple of weeks where anyone who wishes to be involved at committee or coaching level will be more than welcome. Thanks to all those who helped this year to get Erins Own Girls GFC off the ground and particularly to the players for your participation and enthusiasm. Long may it continue.

NEW APPOINTMENT - The recent appointment of Martin Caroll as Business Development Manager for the area is a welcome boost and hopefully the start of local communities creating jobs. Based in the Enterprise Centre his contact details are (087- 6979264) Email “Ideas for local job creation are not necessarily found in looking for new horizons but seeing through new eyes”.

OH WHAT A NIGHT - The members of Castlecomer Male Voice Choir would like to say a big thank to all who supported the Table Quiz in Bollards on Friday. The event was both a social and a financial success. Quizmaster Jack Dunphy was as witty as ever with an impressive repertoire of questions.

DEENSIDE - People wishing to send greetings to relatives for the Christmas edition of Deenside should email

MISSION SUNDAY - Sincere thanks to all who contributed to Mission Sunday. €755 was donated.

ENTREPRENEURS SUPPORT - The Arthur Guinness Fund is an innovative investment vehicle that supports the ideas of entrepreneurs. The fund is awarded on the strength of a project’s reach, scale, social impact and sustainability. Applicants can be individuals or leaders of groups, charities or social enterprises. The Fund will award successful candidates either €25,000 or €50,000 depending on how long the project has been in effect. The closing date for applications to the Arthur Guinness Fund in 30th November 2012.

GAA LOTTO - Erins Own club lotto is now up to €16,950.00 Be in to win. Get your tickets from any committee members or from local shops. You can also sign up to a direct debit scheme whereby you are entered every week in the Local lotto so you don’t have to worry about getting your ticket. Contact Helen at 087 6645022 or any committee member if you would like to take up this way to play the local lotto. Remember all the money raised goes back into your community.