U16A’s bow out of Championship by narrowest of margins

U-16A Championship Semi-Final – Faughs – 08/10/16

Faughs                                2 – 9

BBSE                                  2 – 8

On Saturday afternoon our U-16A’s took on raging hot favourites Faughs in the championship semi-final, in their Tymon Park back yard – a real David vs. Goliath affair, and the story almost had a fairy-tale ending.

Our girls are predominantly u-15, while the bulk of our opponents were a year older. As well as that, Faughs were the league champions, and regularly posted staggering goal tallies, including in a recent challenge against us.

Against that backdrop, most of the support travelled more in hope than confidence, but this team does not do “turning up to make up numbers”, and they made light of the odds that appeared to be stacked against them.

We tore into the game from the off. Scores were as scarce as hens’ teeth early on, and it slowly began to dawn on the Faughs players and bench that this match was not going according to script. The game was 10 scoreless minutes old when one of their mentors was heard to remark “We have a game on our hands here”.

Their nerves might have been eased slightly when they opened the scoring with a point and followed this up with a goal. But our girls were giving as good as they got and Aisling Byrne (who had the game of her life) opened our account with a point. Katie (who was playing her second championship semi of the day, having already starred for the 14’s in the morning) narrowed the gap to 2 points with a pointed free. We then suffered a sucker punch on the stroke of half time when we conceded a rather soft goal.

If Faughs thought they had weathered the storm they were mistaken, as our girls traded point for point throughout the entire second half and never yielded an inch. Nevertheless, the half time gap remained unbridged and seemingly unbridgeable as the clock ticked into the red.

Most of the crowd counted the lead at 5 points, and we seemed destined to accept our fate as gallant losers when Blathnaid was fouled in the square and the ref signalled a penalty. Aisling Gargan sent the sliotar blazing to the net, but surely this was only a consolation score? This view seemed copper-fastened when Faughs went up and won a close-in free which they converted.

One last assault on the Faughs goal attempting the impossible. The right girl (Hollyn) has the ball out on the wing. We dared to dream as the ball sailed in and suddenly the impossible had happened. The ball was resting in the back of the net.

Our support celebrated their deliverance as the final whistle sounded straight away, and it must be said that Faughs also appeared to be readying themselves for the upcoming extra time. However, to our disbelief, the ref’s final tally had Faughs still ahead by a point at the death.

The shock and devastation on our girls’ faces told its own story, of how close they had come to creating maybe the shock of the year in Dublin camogie – the achievement was that great.

Declan spoke for the entire management team when he expressed his pride and admiration for the entire panel of players – including the girls who had not got a run on this day. Nobody in that post-match huddle was unaffected by the sheer emotion of the situation.

Rarely in sport will one witness such a gargantuan effort go unrewarded at the end. This was an absolute panel effort all year, and it would be unfair to single out individuals – in the particular circumstances we would be thoroughly justified in naming everyone individually.

However, before looking forward to next year, it would be remiss not to mention and acknowledge the immense contributions of each of the “2000” girls, who seamlessly joined last year’s Féile panel. Aoife was a superb captain who time and again led her troops into battle from the front. Aisling Gargan, Joanne, Jesse, Georgina, Erika and Sheena were also massive throughout the year and the pity is that our u-16 journey ended so close to “The Holy Grail” of the championship final.

There can be no doubt but that better days in camogie lie ahead for each and every one of these girls, but they should always remember this day as one of their greatest achievements.

Next up the minor championship.

U16B’s beaten in Shield Final

Under 16B Camogie Shield Final – Ballyboden St. Enda’s v Ballinteer St. John’s.

The sliotar went left of the post, right of the post, it even hit the post a few times, and in the end it was this bad luck in front of goal that denied the Boden 16B team what would have been a just reward at the end of a long season for this dedicated bunch of players.

A shield final is almost always a hard-fought affair – teams eliminated from the championship have something to prove, and in our case pride was very much at stake. Playing a St. John’s team (who we had beaten in the group stages) was always going to carry a little bit of history – for it was this team that had beaten us in a Féile Division 4 final in 2015, by a single goal on the wettest of wet April days.

No mud on Saturday however as the game was played on the pristine all weather in Ballinteer Community School. Boden got off to a flyer – dominating possession and winning most of the individual battles. Despite the dominance of possession, and clever interplay, scores eluded us and from early on we knew this could be a frustrating afternoon. And so it proved to be – we trailed 2 – 1 to 1 – 2 for the longest of times and in the end a late goal gave St. John’s a hard-earned two score victory.

Rather than a line by line account of the game we will cut straight to the highlights and the good news. Competing in an under 16 competition we fielded a team of all under 15’s and were within a touch of victory; this same team will field in a Championship final in two weeks’ time – the signs are good. Hannah Tevlin who took a serious knock to the helmet has recovered well and seems fine. Ciara Duffy led the side well as always and spoke very well at the presentations – a career in politics beckons. Ciara McCullagh got good game time following her appendix adventures and was in good hurling form. Zara and Lauren filled the corner back slots with complete assurance – both had their best games in a while. Beth and Lauren hurled well despite not having played much hurling recently – both returning to serious form. No time to mention all the players but it should be said that all 19 players on the day did their utmost and wore the Boden crest with great pride.

Finally a mention for the referee. Paul Flanagan has a great reputation as an excellent hurling referee. Yesterday not only was he excellent on the whistle but he did a great job with the presentation, the only pity being that it wasn’t being presented to Boden!!

Bring on the Under 15 Championship final in a fortnight – we will throw the kitchen sink at that too!

U13 A’s & B’s through to Championship Finals

U-13 A Championship Semi-Final – Na Fianna – 09/10/16

Na Fianna                  1 – 2

BBSE                          1 – 7

Our U-13A’s had a date with Na Fianna in Moibhi Road on Sunday morning in the championship semi-final.

Having already lost to them in the league, we knew we needed to be at our best to beat them, and, in fairness, each and every one of the girls rose to the challenge. We led by four points at half time but Na Fianna drew level with a goal and a point early in the second half. Then our girls showed real resolve to get their noses in front again, and maintained the lead through the final tense minutes.

More of the same (or better) will be required when we face neighbours Judes in the final on 23rd.

This is a team of great battlers, and no little character, so hopefully, a large support will cheer them on in their first camogie championship final.

Player report:

Name: Sarah O’Connell

Hobbies: Gaelic football, Camogie, Basketball

Position in Camogie: Wing Back

Favourite skill in Camogie: hooking people

Why do you like Camogie? It is a very fast and skilful sport


Match report:

On Sunday morning the U13A Camogie team played against Na Fianna in the county semi-final. The weather was beautiful and the Boden girls made a great start and led by 4 points to no score at half time after great play by our forwards.

Na Fianna drew level early in the second half but our backs and midfield then got on top again and we went on to score a goal and 3 points to finish up winners by 1-7 to 1-2.

Thanks to the under 12 girls who played great, especially Sadie who stood in for our injured goalie Lucy. Get well soon to Mia who got a nasty finger injury during the match. Thanks to our big crowd of supporters who encouraged us during the game.

U14’s beaten in Championship Semi-Final