O'Connor Cup

  • THE Gourmet Food Parlour O’Connor Cup All-Stars and Rising Stars have been announced following a mammoth weekend of action at DIT Broombridge, DIT Grangegorman and Abbotstown, where seven winners were confirmed in the GFP Higher Education Championship Finals. 

    The teams were announced via the Ladies HEC Social Media channels on Tuesday evening and GFP O’Connor Cup Champions University of Limerick (UL) were the big winners, with eight players included on the HEC All Star team.

    Defenders Caoimhe McGrath, Shauna Kelly and Louise Ward all pick up HEC All Star awards, with Fiona McHale named at midfield.

    UL, managed by DJ Collins, have nailed down four of the six forward positions, including the entire inside line, with Shauna Howley, Hannah O’Donoghue, captain Eimear Scally and Róisín Howard all included.

    Runners-up UCD have four players on the team – goalkeeper Linda Bruggener, Kate McGrath, Niamh Collins and Áine McDonagh, while Giles Cup winners Ulster University Jordanstown and Lynch Cup Champions TU Dublin (DIT) are also honoured.

    Claragh Connor and ace forward Aimee Mackin make the cut from UUJ, while competition hosts TU Dublin have Niamh McEvoy on the final XV.

    In total, there are four survivors from the 2018 selection, namely Fiona McHale, Shauna Howley, Aimee Mackin and Eimear Scally.  

    The GFP Rising Stars selection recognises the efforts of players in the fourth, fifth and sixth tier competitions.

    GMIT, the Donaghy Cup winners, lead the way with four players on this team, while there are three players each for Moynihan Cup winners Dundalk IT, Moynihan Cup runners-up Letterkenny IT and Lagan Cup winners Ulster University Magee.

    Marino Institute of Education, the beaten Donaghy Cup Finalists, have two players on the list.

     

    GFP O’Connor Cup All Stars

     

    1. Linda Bruggener (UCD) – Kerry
    2. Kate McGrath (UCD) – Waterford
    3. Caoimhe McGrath (UL) – Waterford
    4. Claragh Connor (UUJ) – Derry
    5. Shauna Kelly (UL) – Cork
    6. Louise Ward (UL) – Galway
    7. Niamh Collins (UCD) – Dublin
    8. Niamh McEvoy (TU Dublin) – Dublin
    9. Fiona McHale (UL) – Mayo
    10. Shauna Howley (UL) – Mayo
    11. Aimee Mackin (UUJ) – Armagh
    12. Áine McDonagh (UCD) – Galway
    13. Hannah O’Donoghue (UL) – Kerry
    14. Eimear Scally (UL) – Cork
    15. Róisín Howard (UL) – Tipperary

     

    GFP Rising Stars 2019

     

    1. Aoife McColgan (Letterkenny IT) – Donegal
    2. Aisling Nee (Letterkenny IT) - Donegal
    3. Caoimhe Magee (UU Magee) – Tyrone
    4. Ailish Noonan (Dundalk IT) – Longford
    5. Colleen McKenna (Dundalk IT) –Armagh
    6. Kate Fitzgibbon (Marino Institute of Education) - Dublin
    7. Shauna Hynes (GMIT) – Galway
    8. Neasa Byrd (Marino Institute of Education) – Cavan
    9. Amy Wharton (GMIT) - Cavan
    10. Emma McMahon (Letterkenny IT) – Clare
    11. Danielle McManus (UU Magee) - Fermanagh
    12. Stacey Grimes (Dundalk IT) – Meath
    13. Andrea Trill (GMIT) – Galway
    14. Bronagh O’Rourke (GMIT) - Leitrim
    15. Niamh Murray (UU Magee) – Armagh

     

     

  • UL are the Gourmet Food Parlour O’Connor Cup champions for a record 12th time after goals from Mayo’s Fiona McHale and Hannah O’Donoghue saw them past UCD at Grangegorman.

    This was a stunning performance from UL in one of the best games of football so far this year. They defended rigidly, attacked at pace and showed excellent fitness levels to power to the win against the wind in the second-half.

    Aine McDonagh kept UCD in touch with six points and substitute Chloe Foxe hit the net with a couple of minutes remaining, but there was no beating UL after this display.

    While the wind was not as strong as in the earlier Lynch and Giles Cup finals, UL were certainly assisted by the conditions in the first-half and they got the bright start they needed when Emma Needham pointed in the second minute.

    Dearbhaile Beirne drew UCD level after they won some good ruck ball, but UL kicked on when Rebecca Delee pointed from her left half-forward berth and Eimear Scally got in on the act a few minutes later.

    The match up of Galway colleagues Louise Ward and McDonagh was an interesting head-to-head and the UCD player closed the gap to one when she pointed from a tight angle after 12 minutes.

    All UCD’s points in that first half were very hard earned as the UL defence, expertly marshalled by Laurie Ryan – who stuck to Andrea Murphy diligently – forced plenty of errors by their tight marking and disciplined tackling.

    At the other end too, the Munster side were beginning to find their top form and frees from Scally and Mayo’s Shauna Howley put them three ahead, before a brilliant break out of defence from Shauna Molloy ended up in the score of the half from O’Donoghue.

    McDonagh’s free briefly halted UL’s run, but they scored another three without reply: a Scally free, a Delee point after a good turnover, and another excellent O’Donoghue point when she cut back onto her left.

    That run of six of the seven points scored between the 14th and 29th minutes had UL in control, but UCD finished the half strongly and a Caoimhe Mohan point was followed by a huge McDonagh score to leave it 0-9 to 0-5 at half-time.

    McDonagh landed another sweet point for UCD straight after the restart, but that three-point deficit was as close as they got to UL, who kicked on brilliantly in the second-half. Scally pointed from play, and although Mohan responded, UL scored the next three points as their incredible fitness started to show. McDonagh’s fifth point made it 0-13 to 0-8, but midway through the second-half McHale ran on to Roisin Howard’s pass and flicked the ball over Linda Bruggner into the net.

    UCD responded well again with points from McDonagh and the rampaging Kate McGrath, but eight minutes from the end O’Donoghue sealed the win when she recovered the rebound from her own shot and found the net for the third time in two games.

    Scorers – UL: E Scally 0-7 (5f), H O’Donoghue 1-2, F McHale 1-0, R Delee 0-2, S Howley 0-2 (1f), F Tagney 0-1, E Needhan 0-1, O O’Dwyer 0-1.

    UCD: A McDonagh 0-6 (4f), C Foxe 1-0, C Mohan 0-2, K McGrath 0-1, D Beirne 0-1.a

    UL: C Moore (Cork); S Molloy (Galway), C McGrath (Waterford), A Kelleher (Cork); L Ward (Galway), L Ryan (Clare), J Cregg (Roscommon); S Kelly (Cork), F McHale (Mayo); R Delee (Limerick), E Needham (Mayo), S Howley (Mayo); H O’Donoghue (Kerry), E Scally (Cork), R Howard (Tipperary).

    Subs: O O’Dwyer (Tipperary) for Needham (38), F Tagney (Kerry) for Howley (45), S Murphy (Kerry) for Molloy (48), A Healy (Laois) for Cregg (58), E Fitzpatrick (Tipperary) for Delee (58).

     

     

    UCD: L Bruggner (Kerry); K McGrath (Waterford), S Gormally (Galway), R Flynn (Mayo); N Carr (Donegal), N Collins (Dublin), M Byrne (Dublin); M Lambe (Dublin), T O’Sullivan (Dublin); A Murphy (Kerry), A McDonagh (Galway), L McCartan (Westmeath); C Mohan (Monaghan), D Beirne (Leitrim), K Boyce Jordan (Westmeath).

    Subs: C Foxe (Wexford) for McCartan (39), A O’Reilly (Kerry) for Beirne (50), S Fagan (Dublin) for O’Sullivan (53), K Maher (Kerry) for Carr (56).

     

    Referee: Seamus Mulvihill (Kerry).

  • MAYO sisters Grace and Niamh Kelly will go head to head for Gourmet Food Parlour O’Connor Cup glory on Sunday.

    Holders University of Limerick, who have Grace in their ranks, booked their place in a fifth successive decider with a 3-14 to 1-11 victory over UCC at IT Blanchardstown on Saturday.

    In what was a repeat of the 2017 decider, Mayo star Shauna Howley’s 2-1 proved vital for the winners, before a late Emma Needham goal put the seal on victory for a UL side managed by DJ Collins.

    UL’s final opponents will be Niamh Kelly’s DCU, who were comfortable 3-13 to 0-10 winners against UCD in a Dublin derby semi-final.

    DCU captain Aishling Moloney, a 2017 TG4 All-Ireland intermediate winner with Tipperary, led by example with a contribution of 1-6.

    Mayo’s Sarah Rowe and Meath ace Vikki Wall were the other DCU goalscorers in the second half as they advanced to a first final since 2015, when UL claimed the silverware.

    Sunday’s showpiece is also a repeat of the League decider between champions DCU and UL, and both teams have justified their status as favourites to reach the GFP O’Connor Cup final.

    UCC gave UL a real battle in their semi-final, with Cork duo Libby Coppinger and Orlagh Farmer doing well, while Waterford’s Geraldine Power was another to impress.

    But UCC were missing the services of Cork camogie duo Hannah Looney and Maebh Cahalane, and UL did enough to advance.

    They were off to a flying star when Howley netted with just 23 seconds on the clock, and UL never looked back.

    Aoife Geaney scored a late penalty for UCC but it was star-studded UL who kept alive their hopes of a fourth GFP O’Connor Cup win in five seasons.

    Sunday’s final will have a 4pm throw-in time at Abbotstown’s GAA National Games Development Centre, and will be streamed LIVE at the following link on the Spórt TG4 YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkyZ2b2YMJE