Top marks for Virginia NS

Cumann na mBunscol Boys Division 1 final

St Mary's NS, Virginia 6-8

St Michael's NS, Cootehill 2-3

Virginia NS turned in a sparkling display to see of the challenge of Cootehill NS when the two sides met in the Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Division 1 Boys Final in Kingspan Breffni on Tuesday evening last.

Jack Reilly stole the show for the winners, with a personal tally of 3-5 collected and he was at the heart of everything positive Virginia NS did, as they looked to play on the front foot all the time.

Virginia NS made a whirlwind start to the final and had 2-3 on the scoreboard before Cootehill NS managed to pick off their first score. Jack Reilly landed the first point for his school with  a superb effort in the opening minute, which would be a sign of things, to come from the forward. Charlie Brennan’s vision picked out Jack Reilly with three minutes gone and he clinically dispatched his effort past Finnan Lennon in the Cootehill NS net.

Luke Smith laid on the assist for the next Virginia NS point with Jack Reilly again showing unerring accuracy in front of the posts to raise a white flag in the fifth minute. Jack Reilly then fisted over a point to leave it 1-3 to 0-0 after eight minutes of action.

Jack Reilly slotted in his second goal after going on another mazy run, that bypassed the Cootehill NS defence in the 11th minute, to put Virginia NS in a commanding nine point lead. Joint Cootehill NS Captain Finn Farrelly got his side’s first point with an effort in the 13th minute.

Virginia NS responded instantly with a third goal arriving in the 16th minute as Jack Reilly turned creator to set up Charlie Brennan to thrash his shot past Finnan Lennon in the Cootehill NS goal. Bobby Ray Cole arced over a well taken point and then thundered in a goal in the 19th minute to leave Virginia NS with a lead their dominant first half display merited as they held a 4-4 to 0-1 lead at the half time break.

Cootehill NS added a quickfire double of points from the boot of Tiernan Hessin upon the resumption of the second half with both scores arriving from frees. Jack Reilly fisted over a point for Virginia NS and Nedas Zilaitis then added a point, to leave the scoreline reading 4-6 to 0-3 in Virginia NS’s favour.

Jack Reilly then went on another solo run that cut through the Cootehill NS rearguard and he rifled the ball past Finnan Lennon to grab his hat trick goal in the 26th minute. Jack Reilly added a point to widen the lead to 5-7 to 0-3.

Cootehill NS registered their first goal of the final, finally managing to pierce what had been a watertight Virginia NS defence, with Tiernan Hessin planting his shot past Thomas Erickson in the Virginia NS goal, with 31 minutes gone.

Jayden Farrelly flicked over a point for Virginia NS and then Bobby Ray Cole again displayed his power and pace to run towards the Cootehill NS goal and thunder in his second goal in the 36th minute to move his side 6-8 to 1-3 ahead. Cootehill NS got a late consolation goal with the last kick of the game with Braiden McCarney blasting in a free which evaded the Virginia NS defence to find the back of the net.

Virginia NS were excellent value for their win in this Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Division 1 Boys Final with a display littered with excellent attacking play, hard work in terms of hunting down possession and defensively they were solid throughout.

Cootehill NS on the day were outgunned but they did have some good performances from the likes of Tiernan Hessin, Finn Farrelly and Bradin McCarney who took the fight to a very strong Virginia NS outfit.

St Mary’s Virginia NS: Thomas Erickson, Keelan Quinn, Ben Fitzsimons, Matas Basermanas, Eoin Brady, Nedas Zilaitis(0-1), Bobby Ray Cole(2-1), Oisin Lynch, Fionn Morgan, Jack Reilly(3-5 1f), Sam Mulvey, Luke Smith, Charlie Brennan(1-0).

Subs: Jayden Farrelly(0-1), Declan Byrd, Richard Israel, Oran O’Reilly, Daniel Willis, Jack Geoghegan, Evan Fitzsimons, Cody O’Reilly, Matthew Tuite, Kaiden Curran Doughty, Darragh Clarke, Jamie Doyle Byrne, Darragh Conroy O’Hanlon, Adomas Budninkas.

St.Michael’s NS Cootehill: Finnan Lennon, Conor Sherlock, Paul Pierce, Ryan McMullen, Kevin McElroy, Sam Owens,  Caelain McCarney, Sunny Heron, Aaron Kelly, Tyler O’Leary Flynn, Tiernan Hessin(1-2 2f), Finn Farrelly(0-1), Braiden McCarney(1-0).

Subs: Conor Lynch, Ryan Carragher Pierce, Joshua Galligan, Corey McCann, Caolain Coughlan.

Ref: Gerry Sheridan.