Sports Awards Night in Gallen Community School Ferbane.
Gallen C.S. honoured its sportsmen and sports women at a very enjoyable function held in the school on Friday night last. Guests of honour for the evening were Padraig Boland , a Ferbane man and current Chairman of the Offaly County Board and Michael Duignan , Offaly hurling legend and “Sunday Game” analyst.
The first awards of the evening were presented by Michael Duignan and Ms Josephine mc Keogh, Basketball Coach, to our excellent girls u 16 basketball team who lost an All-Ireland semi-final to Kenmare. The girls were presented with their medals and training gear. The following girls received awards- Ellie Mc Evoy, Roisin Egan , Emma Maher , Avril Spain , Laura Devery , Aoife Corbett,Rachel Seery, Kaithlin Rigney, Emma Flynn , Ciara Flynn, Anna Grehan, Emer Nally and Sarah Kenny.
The historic achievement of Gallen CS in winning their first ever junior rugby title at provincial level was then marked. Gallen CS beat Jez to win the Connacht Junior Development Cup. Conor Galvin and Charlie Couper’s work in preparing the team was praised and Conor thanked everyone for their support. The following players were presented with medals and polo shirts, Dean Guinan , Darren Buckley, Conor Kelly , Michael o Shea, Alex Kearns , Jack Quinn, Jack Clancy , Tom Corcoran , Kyle Higgins , Colin Kenny , Jarlath Stevenson , Brian mc Evoy , Anthony Seery , Conor Owens, Ryan Heavin, Donal Ryan , Diarmuid Guinan , Oisin Daly , Dylan Mc Dinah, Adrian Hynes and Hugh mc Lynn.
It was then time to present individual awards, Padraig Boland and Ms Alma Claffey formally presented Nikita Dunican with her two silver medals. Nikita is a member of the South Offaly Special Olympics team and recently won medals in the freestyle and backstroke disciplines in the Leinster Swimming championships achieving personal bests in both semi-final and final. Well done Nikita.
Brian Gilligan was a well deserving awards recipient in recognition of playing for the Connacht Development and Provincial Schools squad in the Rugby interpros. Well done Brian. Keith Hamilton an Irish International kick boxer and present 6th year student was duly recognised as were Sharon Mannion , 6th year and a member of the Offaly Ladies football team that won the National League Division 4 title against Roscommon recently. Louis Hofmeyr was given due recognition for representing his club, province and country at cricket.
Laura Dolan was given well deserved recognition for her achievements in track and field. Mrs Derval Scully commended Laura and her father Mr John Dolan for all their dedication and hard work in athletics which paid off for Laura as she won the Javelin and Hammer events at the South Leinster’s before winning the Leinster Javelin title and placing 3rd in the Hammer. Laura now looks forward to the All Ireland’s on June 1st in Tullamore. Best of luck Laura.
Jamie Darcy was also recognised for his achievements in winning swimming medals at provincial level.
It was then time to honour the Senior Gaelic football team who had retained their Leinster Senior Vocational Schools title in 2012 but had fallen short in their bid to retain their All Ireland Crown. Fran Mulhall thanked the players and coaches involved in 2011 and 2012 , congratulated this years All Ireland winning Junior team and their coaches. Fran had a special word for Mr Ciaran Doyle manager of the Junior Team saying that this years All Ireland win was fitting reward for Ciaran Doyle’s years of dedicated and loyal service to GAA in Ferbane Schools.
Mr Muhall then called his players up on stage where each member of the 2011 and 2012 Senior teams was presented by Michael Duignan , with a Gallen CS jersey and their Leinster medals. The mentors who assisted with the 2011 and 2012 team in different capacities were also recognised with a Gallen CS GAA school top, Adrian Gaffey , Brian Flynn , Tony mc Tague , Michael Lowry , John Irwin , Damien Brazil, Eddie Nally and Tom O Neill.
The following Senior players from 2011 and 2012 were honoured, Dylan Buckley , Jack Egan , James Nally , Stephen o Rourke , Stephen Wren, Darragh Corbett , Ryan Delaney , Leon Fox , Ciaran Cahill, Michael Butler , Joe Maher , Brian Grehan , Aaron Mc Donagh , Colin Kenny , Eoghan Lowry , Dean Hogan , Darragh Keenaghan , Shane Mooney , Eoghan Hennessy, Michael Corbett , Robbie Robinson , Keith Hamilton, Brian Gilligan , Paddy Cosgrove , Dylan mc Evoy and Christian Brazil.
Padraig Boland then spoke and referred to the good work being done at School and County level to promote GAA. He referred to the “total team performance” of Gallen CS in the All Ireland Junior Football final against Warrenpoint. It was then time to honour our Junior Football”treble winning” heroes. Mr Ciaran Doyle spoke of his pride in the team , how they had played 15 matches this year . Mr Doyle introduced each member of the panel in his own inimitable style and each player was formally presented with their All Ireland medals and a Gallen CS GAA polo shirt.
Mr Doyle also recognised the work of fellow mentors Mick Kenny , Ger Heavin and KP Egan as well as the help provided to the team by Ronan mc Evoy and Conor Kelly. The following Junior players were honoured, Barry Rohan , Ronan Hynes, John Corcoran, Anthony Seery , Conor Lynam , Jack Egan, Liam Cooper, Kyle Higgins , Colin Kenny , Conor Owens , Ryan Heavin , Brian mc Evoy, Jack Clancy , Michael Butler , Dean Hogan , Emmet Molloy, Jack Darcy , Oisin Daly, Jarlath Stevenson , James Lowry, Kevin Nugent, Jack Quinn and Joseph Egan.
Michael Duignan then spoke with great passion about the need to keep playing GAA. He said playing lots of matches was the key and he praised Gallen CS in this regard. Michael said that to succeed you had to have ambition, drive, discipline and determination. Words to the wise from an All-Ireland winner.
Mr Frank Kearns , Chairperson Gallen CS Board of Management spoke of his pride in the school and added his congratulations to everyone on their sporting successes .A wonderful night concluded with the customary refreshments.
Thanks are due to a number of people who helped make the night such a success , Mr John Irwin , Mrs Patricia Kelly, Eddie Nally for his wonderful DVD presentations of our GAA teams , the parents and families, our honoured Special Guests, the caterers and cleaning / maintenance staff who all worked hard to make the night a resounding success.
Presentation of Transition Year Certificates
Gallen CS recognised its Transition Year students in a special end of year awards ceremony last Friday night. Mrs Finnegan spoke of the wonderful opportunities that Transition Year affords our students. Mr Dunican head of TY , in a witty and well received speech brought those present through the TY Year and praised the TY for being an excellent grouping full of hard work and initiative.. TY Students went on retreat to Glendalough, Killary Adventure Centre, Slieve Blooms to sample outdoor life! University of Limerick Open Day, Young Scientist Exhibition in the RDS [ where we were represented by Emma Phelan and Celine Camon, thanks to Science teacher Mrs Hopkins for her hard work in preparation for the RDS] and Athlone Scifest where Gallen CS won the ” Best Communicator” award.
In addition to this , Gallen CS TY students took part in Swimming , Self Defence and First Aid modules [ where they got a Nationally recognised cert]]. Mrs O Toole deserves great praise as Gallen CS TY students did a Photography course and won 7 prizes out of 13 at an exhibition with Jose Luis Rolga the overall winner. Students became teachers as they mentored our local people to master computer skills in ” Log on Learn”. Congratulations to Mrs Mc Grath and her ” Build a Bank” team who achieved a top 7 finish in the National finals. The visit of Colm “Gooch” Cooper to the school in conjunction with “Build a Bank” proved a hit.
There were over 200 Xmas Shoeboxes showing the humanitarian side of TY. Thanks to Ms Aoife Kelly , Mrs Derval Scully and all those who helped make the 100km Gaisce Cycle such a success and to Mrs o Toole whose TY Enterprise Groups showed great innovation and flair winning 3 awards. Among the creations was a” universal cleaning brush for a tractor”.
Our TY students enjoyed their work placements and a fitting end to a wonderful year was the trip to Barcelona, home of the Sagrada Familia, , Porte Aventura not to mention Messi , Xavi , Iniesta and the Nou Camp.
Mr John Irwin presented each student with their TY Certificate and spoke of how TY will benefit students as they make the transition to Leaving Cert level.. Mr Dunican presented Chloe Egan and Rebecca Buckley with TY students of the year award. Zoe Rooney, speaking on behalf of TY students thanked Mr Dunican for his work with the TY group.
School Concert : Thanks to everyone who made the School Concert last Wednesday 22nd May such a success. There was a lovely eclectic mix of singing both solo singers and in groups. There was recorders, fiddles and violins, guitars and piano pieces player. Ms Reynolds deserves our thanks for her work in the Music Department. She also thanked the sixth year music class for their contribution over the last six years for supporting her in in building up the Music department in the school , the talent in sixth year is noteworthy and she wished all of them continued success in their music careers and in their lives.
First year History & Geography outing; Thanks to Mrs o Toole , Mr Lenihan and Ms Kelly for accompanying our students last Wednesday. They had a memorable day visiting Bunratty Castle and Folk Park as well as Craggaunowen Crannog.
Art Trip : Ms Mc Keogh accompanied our 5th and 6th year art students to the Luan Art Gallery in Athlone on Wednesday last. It was an invaluable trip giving our students new insights which will assist them in their art appreciation module for the Leaving Cert.