Connacht Junior Hurling D Championship final 2023

RCC Juniors make history by winning the first ever hurling title for the school.

RCC 3-09  Colaiste Iascaigh, Sligo 2-07

Our Junior Hurlers made history today when they captured our school’s very first hurling title at any grade in the Connacht Centre of Excellence. The icy conditions and the frozen pitch delayed the start of the match but otherwise conditions were near perfect.

RCC started very slowly, and it was the Sligo team that looked the more energetic and hungrier. After 15 minutes, RCC found themselves down, 0-5 to 0-1. We were second to the breaking ball and losing the duels. Several good scoring chances were spurned and RCC looked a pale shadow of the team that topped the group stages. Were it not for the heroics of Tom Hanley in goals, the situation would have been much worse. Tom saved two certain goals and was assured under the high ball despite the glaring sun.

However, as the match drifted towards half time, Jack Lally began to dominate at full back, Eoghan Morris began to deliver faster ball to the forwards and Rory Connolly began to run at the Easkey defence winning several frees to which Eoghan Morris put over the bar. Right on half time, a strong run and shot from Luke Shally saw Kyle Poole Rogers bundle the ball over the line to calm RCC’s nerves. At the half time whistle, the score was, RCC 1-5 Easkey 1-06

The second half was a complete contrast. After some team changes and a half time chat, RCC came out to show why they were favourites. They were now first to the breaking ball and their hurling far crisper. A free won by Enda Killion on the 45-metre line was directed low by Eoghan Morris and it nestled in the top corner. Rory Connolly added another point to put RCC firmly in control. At the 45-minute mark, there looked to be only one team going to win this match but a strike from way out the field somehow found its way to the RCC net, and they were back in it. The game became a see-saw battle, where no quarter was given. Our hurlers battled hard, hooked, and blocked until Easkey finally were done when Eoghan Morris scored his second goal of the day with 5 to go. Rory Connolly added a long-range point to leave 5 points between the sides. After what seemed an inordinate amount of injury time, the referee blew it up cue delirious celebrations for our great hurlers.

This was a massive team performance on the day. There were many great performances but the performances of Tom Hanley in goals, Jack Lally at full back, Eoghan Morris at centre back and Rory Connolly in midfield caught the eye.

Team; Tom Hanley, John Silva, Jack Lally, Aaron Connelly, Bobby Regan, Eoghan Morris, Michael Hanley, Oisin Hynes, Rory Connolly, Nathan Flynn, Evan Allen, Enda Killion, Kyle Poole Rogers, Luke Shally, Luke Hayes, Marc Shally, Tom Og Reddington, Cormac Naughton, Sean Richardson, Liam Connolly, Alan Gately, Jonah Finneran, Evan Featherston

Junior Hurling Captain Eoghain Morris with coaches Mr Kelleher and Mr Timmons