RIVERVALLEY Rangers’ schoolboy section has once again stood up and been counted, with three of their sides contesting for cups this weekend and two coming away with the coveted silverware.
Paul Kelly’s U-10s made their second consecutive trip to the NDSL cup final last weekend following on from their success last year, and they came out the better against Balbriggan to claim the title with a 3-2 win.
Despite many believing Robert McGlynn’s tackle to be fair, the referee pointed to the spot which led to Balbriggan going 1-0 ahead inside the opening five minutes.
Moments later, influential captain Val Mayoya capitalised on an error from the Balbriggan stopper to head home the equaliser, giving the momentum firmly to the Swords men.
His fellow NDSL panellist, Ryan Kinahan, went on fantastic run from the kickoff, skipping by defenders before launching the ball into the far corner beyond the keeper’s reach.
Just after the interval, Kinahan was set free again and in a similar effort, he rounded the opposition defenders in style before dispatching another effort from outside the area into the net.
In the dying embers of the game, Balbriggan converted a fantastic team goal of their own but it was only to be conciliation.
Continuing on from Kelly’s sides’ win the year before, Phil Casley’s U-9 side reclaimed the e-Flow Cup for the club in a spectacular 4-2 win, with Mark Nolan putting in a fantastic effort taking a hat trick on the day.
Their opponents, Skerries Town, were 1-0 up before Nolan’s siege and Ben Murray tucked away one of his own to make it 4-1, before Skerries managed another of their own with the scores finishing up at 4-2.
Not quite finished their haul of silverware, Paul Dalderup’s U-11s will look to take the league title this weekend to complete what will be another successful season for the club’s schoolboy section.
“It’s fantastic to see the young sides coming through and winning trophies,” said U-10 coach Paul Kelly. “We’ll be going nine-a-side next year and I’m sure that will give the lads a big confidence boost.
“Last year we had two teams contesting for cups, and this year we have four so we can see steady progress in the ranks. The club have put a great amount of work into the academy which allows for a fluid transition into the teams and I think we’re really seeing the fruits of that labour now.
“Paul O’Brien has another great group of U-8s that could contest for the same U-9 cup we’ve won two years in a row now, so the future is looking bright at the club,” he said.