St Brigids U14 at the Divisional Feile
Last Saturday St Brigids U14 squad pulled out of Harlequins on the road to Owenbeg to represent the club and the county at the Divisional Feile competition. there were 23 lads on board, drawn in equal numbers from the Div 1 and Div 2 teams which play for the club in the South Antrim leagues.
St Brigids is the only club to field two U14 teams in the league and we are well catered for at that age group with almost 50 players spread across 2 squads.
Unfortunately Moville from Donegal withdrew from the competition which left us in a 3 team group with Magheraclloone from Monaghan and Loughinisland from Co Down.
Our first match v the Monaghan representatives was very close in the early5 stages. While St Brigids had the lions share of possession, built on a solid full back line of Ryan Austin, Joe McCarney and Matt Smyth, playing in front of Thomas McCarney in goals, it was Magheraclloone who hit the net with a speculative shot. We stayed in touch through points from Daniel Foster who was getting through a load of work in midfield as was Eoin Brown, assisted by Ronan Boyle, James Turkington Conan McNicholl and Ben Doherty.
St Brigids tagged on a few points and by half time the boys knew it was a game we could win. In the second half some important attacking play from Jack Logue, joined by Hugo Leeson, Patrick O’Hagan and Conor Mulgrew, set up scores or drew frees which were converted by the Foster / Brown partnership. Rory Moore and Zach Porter were also having an impact on the game and posing questions for the Farneymen. Thomas McDevitt landed the final point of the game to ensure we won 0.6 to 1.1
In the second game V Loughinisland a slow start and a lack of focus at the finish cost us the game and a chance to progress. We fell two goals behind before waking up to the fact there was a match in progress. Tom Morrissey got himself into a great position to score a couple of goals to leave it only 3 behind at the break.
The opening 5 minutes of the second half were our strongest and at that stage, thanks to a Rory Moore goal we were 4 in front. However the marking on kick outs was too slack and the Down team were gifted too much room to build attacks which led to 2 late goals. We piled on the pressure in a contentious last 5 minutes but couldn’t land the goals which would help us into the quarter final. In end we lost by 4 points.
In all it was a very worthwhile venture, our lads played two clubs they haven’t met before and went back to Belfast with one win and one defeat. We will take the lessons from yesterday into the second half of our league campaigns.