Harps stay up and Glenswilly win Donegal SFC – October Sports star awards review:

Harps stay up and Glenswilly win Donegal SFC – October Sports star awards review:

first_imgDonegal Sports Star Awards October review: The month of October will live long in the memory of Ballybofey woman Avril McNamee who won gold in the final of the US Handball Open at Fountain Valley, California. McNamee’s international sporting success was one of the highlights of the Donegal Sports Star Awards monthly review after the MacCumhaill’s Club member defeated Julie Jordan from Anchorage, Alaska on a 21-6, 21-4 scoreline for an impressive final victory. In the semi-final she had won against Ellen O’Connor from Leixlip, Co Kildare, on a scoreline of 21-11, 21-12. There was a range of exceptional achievements in October, which one would expect to see featuring in the Donegal Sports Star Awards nominations list, which will be published early in the New Year. Nominations for the 2016 awards close on Friday 25th November. For further details go to donegalsportsstarawards.ie14-year-old Rhys Irwin’s fantastic season continued as he secured the 125cc/300cc Irish Masters Championship at Mondello International Race Circuit with two rounds in hand and a 100 per cent winning record on his little 125cc Aprilia against the more powerful 300cc bikes. Then, at Cadwell Park in the UK, in the final round of the British Superteens Championship the Kilmacrennan lad won the last race by a staggering 20-second margin. But he just missed out on the championship title by a single point having had mechanical problems in earlier races over the weekend. Still the runner-up place was a remarkable achievement for Irwin who was three years younger than the new champion. It was a truly memorable month for Rhys who was the only Irish rider from the 2016 season to be selected to travel to Spain for the Red Bull Rookies Moto GP trials. He was one of 100 of the World’s best teen motorcycle riders picked from a World-wide selection of 5,500 applicants. And immediately after that terrific experience Rhys and his older brother Caolán landed back in Ireland just in time to be on track at the prestigious Sunflower Trophy races at Bishopscourt Race. He took part in the 125 cc Young Guns Championship adding two more wins to his list of accolades and lifted the impressive Hillsborough Club Perpetual Trophy. Rhys was also invited to the final of the Irish Masters Young Rider of the Year competition at Mondello Park. He was one of ix of Irelands top young riders of 2016 selected to compete for this prestigious prize which will be presented to the winner at an awards function before the end of the year.Also on the same weekend at Mondello Park his older brother Caolán on a 550cc Aprilia was down on power to the more powerful 650 cc Supertwins but still put on a great show taking the Holeshot in Race 1 to finish in a highly creditable eighth position overall against a grid of 45 bikes. Earlier in October at Caldwell Park the 18-year-old had taken his second British win of the season and also had a second place finish at the famous UK motorcycling venue.  Another Kilmacrennan motorcyclist Richard Kerr won both Moto 3 races at the prestigious Sunflower Trophy at Bishopscourt in Co Down. Kerr led in both races from start to finish and broke the lap record on his way to victory in race two.On the international soccer front it was another good month for Seamus Coleman who was given the captain’s armband again by manager Martin O’Neill for the World Cup qualifier against Georgia at the Aviva Stadium. The Everton player was named ‘Man of the Match’ as he scored his first ever goal in the vital 1-0 victory. At the third attempt Finn Harps secured a victory and a first goal against Bohemians in their final game of the 2016 League of Premier Division season in Ballybofey.Sean Houston was honoured twice after the game picking up both the Harps 54 Crew and Dublin Supporters ‘Player of the Year’ awards. Ethan Boyle was named ‘Young Player of the Year’ and it was also the night that the club and fans bade farewell to Kevin McHugh who retired from senior soccer after an outstanding career. The Killea man who made his debut for Harps in August 1998 and went on to score 186 goals in 438 times for Donegal’s only senior club. Earlier that week Ollie Horgan’s side had secured their Premier Division status without kicking a ball after Wexford Youths failed to secure the necessary three points against Cork City. A victory for Shane Keegan’s side at Turners Cross would have meant Harps needing a draw in that final game against Bohemians to be sure of top-flight football in 2017. After a dismal run of ten games without a win October was good for Harps with a scoreless draw against Sligo Rovers at the Showgrounds; a 2-1 home win over Bray Wanderers and a 92nd minute Houston goal earned the hosts a precious point in a 1-1 draw with St. Patrick’s Athletic in Ballybofey. Those results had put Horgan’s outfit nine points ahead of Wexford Youths with three league fixtures remaining. Harps did lose 2-0 to Cork City but then secured a priceless 0-0 draw against Wexford at Ferrycarrig Park.Meanwhile, there was heartbreak for the Finn Harps U19s who missed out on a place in the FAI National League Final after a 2-1 extra-time defeat at the hands of UCD in Ballybofey. And it was a similar story for the U17s who lost 2-1 to UCD at Belfield in an FAI National League quarter-final. Staying with soccer St. Johnston’s Tyler Toland was a member of the Republic of Ireland U17 side that clinched qualification for the European Championships with a 2-0 win over Belarus in Cork.On the last Sunday in October in the National Section of the Dublin City Marathon Letterkenny AC’s Catriona Jennings finished second in a time of 2.44.59 while Inishowen A.C’s Pauric McKinney won the Male O-50 category clocking 2.35.03 for the 26-miles. There was a first for the Milford Athletic Club when their Novice team finished third at the Donegal Cross-Country Championships in Fanad.Far from home Letterkenny 24/7 Triathlon club member and two-time Donegal Sports Star Awards winner Aidan Callaghan finished 383rd out of 2,000 competitors at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii.  Donegal finished runners-up at the 40th Inter-counties Surfing Championships behind Sligo at Tullan Strand in Bundoran and Creevy National School Ballyshannon Junior Boys Relay team of James Monaghan, Caolan McCauley, Darragh Summerville and Alan Vaughan won gold at the Ulster Schools Swim Championships in BangorGlenswilly were crowned Donegal Senior Football champions for the third time in six years after executing a near perfect game plan to defeat Kilcar by a point (1-10 to 0-12) at McCumhaill. On a miserable wet afternoon Michael Murphy’s ninth minute goal was the decisive score of the decider. But the Glen men’s interest in the Ulster Senior Club Football Championship ended disappointingly in Newry after being well placed at a stage to bid for a semi-final spot early in the second half against Down’s Kilcoo. The turning point came ten minutes into the second half when Michael Canning’s side was leading 1-6 to 0-7. Cathal Gallagher was unable to convert a decent goal scoring opportunity chance and disaster then struck when he was sent off after giving away a penalty at the other end, which Kilcoo converted. The Glen men failed to score again in the quarter-final as their opponents tagged on 1-5 to reach the last four of the provincial competition. Still October was a good month for the Foxhall Club as their third string squad won the Donegal Senior C Championship title. The Manus Kelly managed side defeated Naomh Conaill 1-5 to 0-6 in the final at the O’Donnell Park.Early in the month at the O’Donnell Park the Downings had arguably the biggest success in the club’s history as their two teams took county titles at the O’Donnell Park. Few clubs can boast winning two Donegal Football Championship titles on the one day.For that to happen the reserve team had to complete the first part of the double act and the side jointly managed by Francie McHugh and John Byrne did exactly that with an excellent 2-8 to 0-9 win over Letterkenny Gaels.The second leg of the double bid proved a bit more challenging for the Connor brothers Andy and Seimi as their opponents Naomh Padraig from Muff put it up to them for long periods of the decider in Letterkenny. However, Na Dunaibh came good when it mattered most with late points from Lorcan Connor and sub Gary ‘Ban’ McClafferty finally killing off a very determined effort from the Inishowen outfit. The Downings first string carried that good form into Ulster as County U21 player Lorcan Connor played a huge role as his club Downings advanced to the semi-finals of the Ulster Junior Football Championships for the first time ever thanks to a two-point win over Derry side Magilligan (1-9 to 0-10) at Celtic Park. In the middle of October there was an historic success for Burt who upset the odds to defeat Milford and take the Donegal Intermediate Football Championship title for the first time 2-11 to 1-12 after a relay at the O’Donnell Park. Naomh Conaill won the Donegal Minor Football Championship for the ninth time with a 1-11 to 0-11 victory over St. Eunan’s in Convoy and on the last Saturday of October an early Conor Boyle goal paved the way for Gweedore to take the County U21A Championship title with a 1-10 to 0-8 win over St. Eunan’s in Glenties. McCumhhaills hopes of an Ulster Junior Hurling Championship title were dashed as Antrim’s Lamh Dhearg won the provincial final by 0-16 to 0-13. Setanta’s Danny Cullen played his part but couldn’t help Ireland to victory over Scotland in the annual shinty-hurling international.On the first Sunday of the month Letterkenny crew Brian Brogan and Damien Mc Gettigan claimed their second National victory of the year in the Cork 20 Rally . Having already clinched the West Cork Rally back in March the pair secued victory by over one minute from Tommy Doyle and Liam Moynihan in their Renault Clio. The following weekend the 2014 Donegal Sports Star ‘Motorsport’ Award winners Declan and Brian Boyle in their Ford Fiesta WRC won the Martin Howley Memorial Donegal Harvest Rally for the third successive year in KillybegsRaphoe’s Peter O’Donnell was inducted into the Donegal Boxing Hall of Fame at the organisations’ annual awards in the Central Hotel, Donegal TownIn Martial Arts where was success for the Three Rivers Shotokan Karate Club at the Champions International Karate Association (CIKA) European Open with gold for the Crawford brothers Ciaran and Eoin Crawford in the Kumite section. Ciaran also won silver in the Kata category. It was bronze for Megan Gallagher and Ace Rodriguez in the Kata. In the Kunite there was silver for Emma Dolan with a bronze going to Brodie Hannigan. There was gold for the team of Emma Dolan, Jamie-Lee Simpson and Natasha Doherty in the U14 category. Three-Rivers finished sixth out of the 45 clubs that took part in the competition. The youngsters from Three Rivers also did very well at the ONAKAI Junior Kunite Championships in Dublin with golds for Natasha Doherty  (10-11 years), Emma Dolan (12-13 years) and Ciaran Crawford (10-11 years). There was also silver for Jamie-Lee Simpson (12-13 years) and six-year-old Eoin Crawford took bronze (6-7 years).In soccer an Ulster side backboned by Donegal boys was crowned FAI U18 Schools Inter-provincial champions on Sunday thanks to a 3-2 victory over Connacht in Dublin. The goals were scored by Coaliste Ailigh’s Jeaic McKelvey, Sean McBride and Corrie-Lee Bogan. Ulster ended up with two wins and a draw over the weekend. In the middle of October the Ulster Senior League just missed out on glory at the FAI Intermediate Inter-provincial Tournament in Cork. After a 3-1 win over Leinster on the Friday night with Mark Moran, Paul McVeigh and Ryan Varma scoring. The USL team managed by Bonagee United’s Peter Moran defeated Connacht 2-0 on the Saturday thanks to a brace from Walsh. However, the holders and hosts, Munster, defeated the the USL 2-0 on Sunday to keep the silverware.For further information on the Donegal Sports Star Awards go to donegalsportsstarawards.ie or visit us on Facebook at Donegalsport Star-awards.Harps stay up and Glenswilly win Donegal SFC – October Sports star awards review: was last modified: November 7th, 2016 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img


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