Castleknock Community College with their All-Ireland trophy

CASTLEKNOCK Community College created history last Friday when they overcame St Patricks, Armagh 2-7 to 0-4 to capture the school’s first ever All-Ireland senior camogie title. Played out in front of large crowd at Inniskeen, Monaghan, the win was a defining moment for camogie in the college.
Grey skies greeted the teams to Kavanagh country in what was a tense and low scoring first half. Castleknock did not have to wait long for their first scores as captain Aoife Whelan and half forward Caitlin Coffey each pointed to give the Dublin side a two-point advantage after four minutes.
Robust defending from both sides was the hallmark of the first half with the Castleknock defence revealing their own worth early on as they repelled a number of St Pat’s attacks with Castleknock’s Niamh Mulroney displaying some sure-footed work in the process.
St Pat’s Eimear Grimley posed a constant threat to Castleknock in the first half but it was Catherine Beagan who got the Armagh side moving with two points from frees to level the game.
Castleknock edged ahead just before half time through an Aisling Andrews free and a long distance effort from Mairead McCarthy. With little to choose between the teams at the break, there was no hint as to the thrilling moments the second half would bring.
It opened with a score for ’Knock free taker Andrews. Shortly, Coffey was to be denied two goal opportunities in quick succession by St Pat’s net minder Ciara Hawes.
Now playing with greater fluency, the Dublin side were to get their reward when Coffey set up Whelan for the first goal of the game which was quickly followed by a Deirdre McCarthy’s effort which also hit the back of the net.
A tenacious St Pats had their own chances, which included a fine shot from Leah McGoldrick which rattled the crossbar. Castleknock keeper Sophie Browne was called into action twice to prevent goals eating into her side’s lead.
The Dublin 15 school grew in confidence as the half progressed and produced some fine passages of play. A missed penalty following a foul on Castleknock’s Ellen Bolger and a late dismissal for the St Patrick’s full back had little impact on the result.
Limited to two points in the second half, the Armagh side were unable to close the gap on their rival as Andrews and Whelan both tagged on further scores to seal a famous victory.
Speaking to GazetteSport Castleknock principal John Cronin expressed his delight saying he was: “very proud of the girls, very proud of Margaret Shortall, our fantastic coach, 21 years in the community. Our first All-Ireland, a long time coming, the first of many.”

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