22 May, 2014
Bray Emmet Minors played out a draw in an enjoyable and exciting encounter with St Oliver Plunkett(Dublin) at a damp Emmet Park on Thursday last .The Bray team, fielding 10 of last year's Minor finalist panel, dominated the possession stats in the first half, but failed to transfer this to the scoreboard with in particular some poor decision making in front of goals . Nothing between the sides at half time. On the restart, Plunketts enjoyed a ten minute purple patch, building a six point lead. But the Bray lads dug deep, shook off the early season cobwebs and finished the much stronger, with some excellent score-taking from man of the match Cathal McGee. A fair result on full time whistle with honors shared, reflecting the endeavor of both teams.
Oliver Plunketts :4-7
Team: Andrew Sutton, Sean O'Connor, Shane Lohan, Patrick Cunningham, Finn O'Duill, Donnacha O'Midheach, Ciaran Browne, Padraig Doyle, Ishmael Mnensa, Conor O'Doherty, Eoin McCormack, Conor Byrne, Bill Moorehouse, Cathal McGee, Cian Rowe. Sub: Liam Benville (Rowe)...
|Minor Football Championship County Final Replay|
27 October, 2013
Unfortunately, Bray Emmets tasted defeat in a County Final for the second week running after our Minor Footballers lost to St. Patrick’s Wicklow in the replayed County Final on Sunday, 27th October in Aughrim. The game was played as a curtain raiser to the Senior Final between Rathnew and Baltinglass and both games will be remembered for their dramatic finishes.Emmets stormed into an early lead thanks to a goal from Marc Lennon and aided by a strong breeze, further points were added by Eoin Mac Cormaic and Cathal McGee who raised the white flag three times. A four point half-time lead was being whittled down when Daire Henderson weaved his way through the St. Pats defence to score a fantastic goal. Cathal McGee added to his tally twice and Marc Lennon popped over a free but the sides could not be separated at the end of normal time; Bray Emmets 2-7 St. Patricks 1-10.In extra-time, Cathal McGee pointed again before Dunni O Midheach found the net and the Bray supporters were now dreaming of lifting the cup. The inevitable siege to the Emmets goal materialised in the second half of extra-time as St. Pats used the wind to their advantage and agonisingly, the winner came right at the death leaving Bray with little chance to respond. It was an absolutely heartbreaking way to lose and the fact that both games were superb displays of football at it’s best will be of little consolation to Paddy Moynihan and his squad. However, everyone in the Club is extremely proud of the team and we know that this group of players will eventually get the success they deserve.Emmet Bhré: Padraig Doyle, Sean O’Connor, Shane Lohan, Seanie Maloney, Dylan Terry, Ishe Mnensa, Peter Conroy, Matt Thompson, Eoin Mac Cormaic, Daire Henderson, Dunni O’Mideach, Ben Mac Cormaic, Cathal McGee, Gavin Dowling, Marc Lennon. Substitutes: Patrick Cunningham, Dan Cody, Ciaran Barnes, Paul Moran, Hugh Armstrong, Shane Anders, Ryan Ashworth, Conor O’Doherty, Ciaran Browne, Jack Doyle Rennix.Management: Paddy Moynihan, Paul Barry, Matt Thompson Snr....
|All square in Minor County Final|
13 October, 2013
The Bray Emmets Minor Footballers took on St. Patrick’s Wicklow in the County Final on Sunday, 13th October in Aughrim and as predicted, the game was a closely fought encounter between two excellent sides with nothing to separate them at the final whistle.Playing with the breeze, Daire Henderson opened the Bray account with a fine point before Marc Lennon danced his way through the Pats defence only to see his beautifully placed shot whistle past the post. St. Pat’s responded with an equalising point and then struck for a goal but Cathal McGee steadied the ship with his first point of the afternoon. Emmets were creating chances but frustratingly, weren’t getting the break of the ball in front of goal. Despite this, a late surge saw Marc Lennon, Dylan Terry and Daire Henderson add to the tally and at half-time, Emmets led 0-5 to 1-1.The second half began with St. Pats dominating the game and unsurprisingly, this was reflected on the scoreboard as they added three unanswered points to lead by two. Ben Mac Cormaic and Marc Lennon linked up well on the left flank to reduce the arrears before the sides exchanged frees, Bray’s courtesy of the boot of Cathal McGee. The tit-for-tat continued when Gavin Dowling blasted over after St. Pat’s had worked a good score at the other end. Looking for the equaliser, Emmets began to exert real pressure on the Wicklow defence and cometh the hour, cometh the man as Dunni O’Midheach, who covered every blade of grass in Aughrim, kicked the levelling score. In a breathless and frantic finish, Bray desperately sought the winner and laid siege to the St. Pats goal but they just could not find an opening. And in a truly dramatic finale, a wonder save by Padraig Doyle right at the death kept Bray in the tie before the resulting 45 sailed wide much to the relief of Paddy Moynihan and the rest of the Emmets sideline. The final whistle blew with the game ending in a draw: Bray Emmets 0-9 St. Patrick’s Wicklow 1-6.Best for Bray were Shane Lohan and Seanie Maloney in defence, Ishe Mnensa, Matt Thompson and Eoin Mac Cormaic dominated the middle while Daire Henderson, Dunni O Midheach and Marc Lennon were the standout performers up front. In a game as close as this, it is often small things that decide the outcome. And for me, watching a passage of play in the first half says so much about this panel of players. Dylan Terry bravely blocked a St. Pats shot at goal and in the process, received a cut to his head. Dan Cody replaced him as a blood substitute, won a ball and set up a badly needed point. He then rejoined the substitutes as Dylan returned to the field of play. His selfless cameo was small but vital and shows that from 1 to 28, this group play as a team.So, the two sides get to do it all over again, not that anyone watching such exciting football will complain! It is expected that the replay will be played before the Senior Football Final on Saturday, 26th October but that is yet to be confirmed.Emmet Bhré: Padraig Doyle, Sean O’Connor, Shane Lohan, Seanie Maloney, Dylan Terry, Ishe Mnensa, Peter Conroy, Matt Thompson, Eoin Mac Cormaic, Daire Henderson, Dunni O’Mideach, Ben Mac Cormaic, Cathal McGee, Gavin Dowling, Marc Lennon. Substitutes: Patrick Cunningham, Dan Cody, Ciaran Barnes, Paul Moran, Hugh Armstrong, Shane Anders, Ryan Ashworth, Conor O’Doherty, Ciaran Browne, Jack Doyle Rennix.Management: Paddy Moynihan, Paul Barry, Matt Thompson Snr....
|Minor Football Championship|
24 September, 2013
In front of a vociferous and enthusiastic support, Bray Emmets progressed to the Minor Football Championship County Final after a superb win over Blessington on Tuesday, 24th September at Newtown’s GAA Grounds. These two sides had already locked horns in an entertaining encounter in the Group stages when Emmets had emerged victorious and from the throw-in, it was obvious that Blessington were determined to avenge that defeat. They raced into an early three point lead as Bray struggled to cope with the greasy conditions. After surviving this opening blitz, Bray eventually settled into the game and the direct running of our forwards began to cause the Blessington defence lots of problems. Ben Mac Cormaic’s and Marc Lennon’s speed down the left flank meant that often, the boys in blue and white hoops had no other option than to drag them to the ground, resulting in Bray opening their account with two frees. Points were exchanged and both sides hit the crossbar before Blessington were reduced to fourteen men for a second yellow card. Bray took full advantage of the dismissal with Gavin Dowling finding the net and Daire Henderson scoring a fine long range point and at the break, Emmets led by 1-4 to 0-5.
With Seanie Maloney deployed as the extra man and hoovering up any ball that went into the Blessington full-forward line, Bray hit a purple patch at the beginning of the second half. They dominated the exchanges and points from Cathal McGee, Gavin Dowling and Marc Lennon stretched their lead before Lennon bravely finished to the net. Six points and one man to the good, it looked like Emmets had one foot in the Final but Blessington, to their credit, never gave up and laid siege to the Bray goal as the game drew to a close. The final whistle sparked great scenes of celebration as Bray held on to the win on a scoreline of Bray Emmets 2-9 Blessington 0-11.
Emmet Bhré: Padraig Doyle, Sean O’Connor, Shane Lohan, Seanie Maloney, Dylan Terry, Ishe Mnensa, Peter Conroy, Matt Thompson, Eoin Mac Cormaic, Daire Henderson (0-1), Dunni O’Mideach, Ben Mac Cormaic (0-1), Cathal McGee (0-2) (1 free), Gavin Dowling (1-3) (3 frees), Marc Lennon (1-2).
Substitutes: Patrick Cunningham, Dan Cody, Paul Moran, Hugh Armstrong, Shane Anders, Ryan Ashworth, Conor O’Doherty, Ciaran Browne, Jack Doyle Rennix.
Management: Paddy Moynihan, Paul Barry, Matt Thompson Snr.
Bray Emmets will now face St. Patrick’s Wicklow in the County Final and we hope that all Club members will be in Aughrim to support the boys....
|Minor Footballers loose out|
25 September, 2012
On a day that Bray and the east coast saw one of the worst
rainfalls all year Bray Emmets minors made the long journey down to
Annacurra for their Minor A Championship Semi Final vs.
Blessington. Bray had qualified for the semi-finals after beating
Baltinglass, St Nicholas and Eire Og to finish fourth in the group.
Blessington finished second and this made for a mouth watering
Bray started this game at 100 miles an hour. After only 3
minutes they were 2 points to no score up with a Daire Lohan free
and a nice Luke Maloney point from play. Bray then created a great
goal chance, after a slick move ended up with Marc Lennon on his
own with just the keeper to beat but his effort went narrowly wide.
Bray kept the pressure up and got a 3rd point from a massive
distance from play from inspirational captain Daire Lohan. After 15
minutes Blessington started to come into the game a bit more and
were attacking the Bray defence but our full back line of Shane
Lohan, Cathal Ó Dualachain and Seanie Maloney were magnificent to
hold their full forward line to no scores at this stage of the
game. The score was level after 20 minutes after Bray
dominating. It was point for point after this for the remainder of
the first half. Blessington took the lead for the first time and
then Daire Lohan got another two points, another excellent one from
play and one from a free. Marc Lennon scored a fine point from a
tight angle and Blessington finished the scoring in the first half
with two points from the right hand side to leave it all level at
half time. 1-3 to 6 points.
The second half started similar to how the first half ended.
Blessington started to take control now and scored 2 points on the
trot. Bray were competing well and were putting in some excellent
balls into our full forward line. Blessington tacked on another
point to put them 2 points up. The score after 45 minutes was
Blessington 1-5 Bray 6 points. Then came the killer blow - a well
worked move up the left wing found the right half forward for
Blessington in space for him to coolly slot the ball into the
corner of the net. If there were major doubts cast over their first
goal there were no complaints for their second. Bray replied with a
point from another Daire Lohan free but again Blessington responded
with 2 fine points. 6 points in it with 6 minutes left. Bray
battled in search of goals and eventually were awarded a penalty
which was converted with ease by Daire Henderson. Just a goal was
the margin with two minutes left and Bray almost got that goal with
the last kick of the game but Daire Lohan's effort was well blocked
by the Blessington defence. After 42 seconds of injury time was
played the ref blew the final whistle to the despair of the
battling Bray Emmets team. Final score was Blessington 2-7 Bray
This was a heartbreaking result for this great minor team that
worked so hard all year to get to this stage of the championship.
It will take this team a while to recover from this but with 2/3's
of the panel eligible for minor next year the future is bright. For
those who are now finished at minor level they will hopefully taste
some sort of success with our Senior or Junior teams in the club in
the near future. Other massive performances on the night came from
Ishe Mnensa and Matt Thompson in the half back line and Enda Molloy
and Ben McCormack who both worked tirelessly on both wings up
front. This was Bray's best performance of the year and if factors
were different we could be now looking forward to preparing for a
Team: P Doyle, S Lohan, C Ó Dualachain, S Maloney, H Armstrong,
I Mnensa, M Thompson, D Lohan, D Henderson, E Molloy, D Coady, B
McCormack, L Maloney, J Doyle, M Lennon
Subs: D O'Midheach for D Coady, P Conroy for H Armstrong, S
Anders, R Treacy, L Morgan, L Gorman
Scorers:D Lohan (0-5) (3 frees), D Henderson (1-0)
(pen), L Maloney (0-1), M Lennon (0-1)
|Minor Footballers prevail over St Nicholas|
5 September, 2012
Minor Championship Round 3
Bray Emmets 1-10 St Nicholas 1-7
This again was another must win game for our minors at home on
Wednesday evening under lights in conditions that couldn't have
been any better for championship football. To date we had won one
game and lost one.
Bray came straight out of the traps and registered the first two
scores of the game from Daire Lohan, one from play and one free.
For the rest of the half Bray maintained that two point advantage.
St. Nicholas got one back and then Ben McCormack who was running
the St Nicholas defence ragged throughout scored a fine point from
play. St Nicholas replied with a point from a close range free and
we responded with an excellent individual point from Cian O'Byrne
where he twice dummied the St Nichs defence to calmly slot the ball
over the bar. Back came St Nichs with a good point themselves from
play which we followed up with a long range score from Lee Brandon
who was also doing well at centre forward for his first start of
the season. At times our defence were under pressure with the pace
at which St Nichs were moving the ball but coming towards the end
of the half Cathal Ó Dualachain, Shane Lohan and Ishe Mensa were
all getting the better of their markers.
We started the second half with a close range free from Cian
O'Byrne. For the next ten minutes both defences were on top with no
scores from either side but then St Nichs came storming back into
the game scoring an excellent goal making it all square for the
first time. We responded with a free from Daire Lohan which was the
result of good work from Dan Coady, Ben McCormack and Cian O'Byrne.
St Nichs replied again with a point and then we got another good
score from play from Lee Brandon to put us one point up. It was
just score for score at this stage and again St Nichs came down the
pitch to work a good score. And then came the match decider. Luke
Maloney on as a sub collected the ball on the 40 and took on the St
Nichs defence before delivering an inch perfect pass to Jim Doyle
who went around the keeper but was rugby tackled to the ground for
his troubles. A certain penalty that St Nichs would have no
arguments over and it was coolly slotted to the bottom right hand
corner by Lee Brandon. Three points in it and 8 minutes left. St
Nichs increased the pressure in search of a goal but as with the
previous week against Baltinglass our defence were magnificent not
to concede a goal. Pádraig Doyle pulled off a point blank save in
the final few minutes that must have deflated the St Nichs team as
they realised there was no way through the Bray defence. St Nichs
got a point which we responded with another fine Lee Brandon point
to finish the game 3 points on top.
If Brays senior win on the weekend against Rathnew was the game
of the week well then surely this was next in line. This was real
quality championship football from both teams that was played in a
sporting manner. Bray had injuries to key players in this match
when Hugh Armstrong limped off injured in the first half and then
Donnacha O'Midheach in the second, who were both doing well until
forced off. Other good performances in defence came from Enda
Molloy and Matt Thompson. Daire Henderson and Daire Lohan
definitely got the better of the midfield battle and up front Dan
Coady put in a tireless effort when moved to wing forward. Shane
Anders and his replacement Liam Morgan worked hard in the
Round 4 is next Wednesday (12th Sept) in Wicklow town vs. St
Pats and throw in is at 6.45pm. The team is building up a nice
gathering of support and it would be great to see them all down to
support us in this vital away game.
|Minor Footballers defeat Baltinglass|
29 August, 2012
Minor Championship Round 2
Bray Emmets 2-09 Baltinglass 1-9
29/08/2012 in Old Conna
This was our second group game of phase two of the minor
championship. We were beaten easily by a good Blessington team the
previous week down there so this was a must win game.
We started this game well and went into an early 5 points to 3 lead
with good points coming from Cian O'Byrne, Mark Lennon, Liam Morgan
(free), Dara Lohan and Ben McCormack. In this early part of the
game we were putting some nice moves together and the overlap been
created by our two midfielders Dara Lohan and Dara Henderson was
paying dividends for the likes of Mark Lennon and Cian O'Byrne who
were causing all sorts of problems for the Baltinglass
defence.Bray Emmets were on top for most of this half
and stretched their lead to go in at half time 1-8 to 6 points up.
The other scores came from Luke Maloney, which was a well worked
move involving 4 or 5 players and resulting in him tapping it over
the bar, two frees from Dara Lohan and an excellent goal from Dara
Henderson who took on the Baltinglass defence and stuck it in to
corner of the onion bag.
In the second half things started to turn in Baltinglass' favour
slightly and they showed great heart to keep eating away at the
Bray lead. They scored 3 points on the trot with no reply but it
could have been a lot more only for good defensive work from the
likes of Enda Molloy, Cathal O' Dualachain and Matt Thompson. Then
after 15 minutes we finally got our first score of the
2ndhalf and what a score it was too. Started off
by Hugh Armstrong with a delicate flick up into his hands he hand
passed the ball to Dara Henderson who ran straight at the
Baltinglass defence and released the ball to Mark Lennon for the
coolest of finishes. This would have demoralised most teams but not
Balto. They kept the pressure up and 5 minutes later they had a
goal themselves to leave the score at 2-9 to 1-8 with 8 minutes
left. We then got a fine score from play from Dara Lohan and our
defence stayed strong for the remaining minutes to not concede
This was a much improved team performance and in addition to the
players mentioned above there were also excellent performances from
Shane Lohan, Ishe Mnensa and Dan Coady who was out in front of his
marker all day. Again Pádraig Doyle spread himself for a couple of
great saves and pulled the ball down from going over the bar at a
vital time in the first half.
Round 3 is next Wednesday (5thSept) in Old Conna
vs. St Nicholas and throw in is at 7pm. All support against
Baltinglass was appreciated by the team and hopefully we can get
even more down for this crucial match next week.
Team: P Doyle, E Molloy, H Armstrong, S Lohan, M Thompson, C Ó
Dualachain, I Mnensa, D Lohan, D Henderson, L Morgan, L Maloney, B
McCormack, C O'Byrne, D Coady, M Lennon
Subs: P Conroy, S Anders, L Brandon, D O'Midheach, R Treacy
Scorers:D Lohan (0-4), M Lennon (1-1), D Henderson
(1-0), B McCormack (0-1), C O'Byrne (0-1), L Morgan (0-1), L
|Minor Championship V Tinahely |
18 July, 2012
Tinahely 1-08 Bray Emmets 1-11
18/07/2012 in Tinahely
Our Minor team travelled to Tinahely on Wednesday with 17
players available for selection to take on the home team in Round 3
in the Championship. To date we had beaten Newtown and lost to
Blessington so this was a must win game.
Bray started the better of the two teams in the first ten
minutes taking 3 points to 1 lead thanks to points from Cian
O'Byrne, Daire Henderson and Dan Coady. We then took the
foot off the pedal and Tinahely went into a 5-3 lead with 10
minutes remaining in the first half. It swung back in our favour
for the rest of the half thanks to excellent first half
performances from Ben McCormack and Cian O'Byrne up the left wing.
They were out in front of the markers for every single ball that
went in and were causing all sorts of havoc up front. Meanwhile in
defence Hugh Armstrong was marshalling the full back line to great
effect with our half back line of Matt Thompson, Cathal Ó
Dualachain and Ishe Mnensa dominant throughout. We tacked on four
more points from Andy Bartley, Luke Maloney, Ben McCormack and a
fine effort from Daire Henderson from the left foot whilst been
fouled by a Tinahely player to lead 7-5 at half time.
The second half started how we finished the first. An early
point from Cian O'Byrne from a free was followed up shortly
afterwards with an excellent point from play from the same player.
With Bray now dominating their opponents we snatched a good fisted
goal from our big midfielder Andy Bartley which was assisted by
great work from Dan Coady to get the ball into him. It looked like
we were just going to finish off the job at this stage with a 1-9
to 5 point lead but Tinahely had other ideas. They replied with 2
points which we followed up with one from Ben McCormack.Then
came a Tinahely goal a from long range free which made for a nail
biting final 8 minutes with only 2 points in it. For these final
few minutes the entire team including our two subs Paul Moran and
Ryan Treacy who came on at a difficult time when Tinahely started
to take over, showed great heart and worked hard not to concede
anymore scores. This was a good team performance where our defence
stood strong and in both corners Enda Molloy and Sean Maloney kept
their men quiet throughout. Luke Maloney led the forward line to
great effect with Shane Anders and Liam Morgan working hard on the
right wing to create opportunities for others. Cian O'Byrne had the
final say with a free in front of the goal that was won from hard
work from Ishe Mnensa. A lot of positives for the team to take from
this result and plenty of areas to work on also.
Finally I think two players deserve special mention. Cathal Ó
Dualachain travelled back from Carrick on Shannon to make this game
and played a captains role throughout inspiring everyone around him
in the absence of Daire Lohan. Pádraig Doyle made his debut in goal
for the minors and pulled off two point blank saves in the first
half and surpassed those saves in the 2nd half using his long frame
to stretch up and save the ball from going over the bar at a vital
time when Tinahely were getting on top. Surely a rarity at minor
level and even rarer for a player who is still under 15.
Last group game is against Rathnew at home. Date and time to be
Team: P Doyle, E Molloy, H Armstrong, S Maloney,
IMnensa, , M Thompson, C O'Dualachain , A
Bartley, D Henderson, S Anders, L Maloney, B McCormack, L Morgan, D
Coady, C O'Byrne
Subs: P Moran for L Morgan and R Treacy for D Coady
Scorers: C O'Byrne 4pts (2 frees), A Bartley 1-1, B McCormack
2pts, D Henderson 2 pts, D Coady 1pt, L Maloney 1pt
|Bray take the Minor Football Shied|
23 October, 2010
Bray Emmets 2.07 -St. Kevin's
Our boy's minor footballers got some
consolation for their defeat in the championship when theywon
the minor shield on Saturday 23rdOctober in
Laragh. Bray made a good start in the game but were guilty of some
poor finishing. Two converted 45s by Arron Murphy , a fine goal and
two points by Bray's 'man of the match' Nicholas
Sweeneygave them a 1.04 to 3pts lead at half
time.Bray got another goal early in the second half
from Daniel Molloy which gave them a 7 points lead.St.
Kevin's chipped away at Bray's lead with their centre forward, Paul
Miley scoring 3 points from frees. Bray had 2 more points
fromArron Murphy and one from Adam Conway to keep them
ahead at the end.Arron Murphy accepted the shield on
behalf of his team and Nicholas Sweeney received the 'man of the
match' award.All the Bray team played well, led by
their captain Arron Murphy, Eoin O' Dea, Philip Haughton,Cillian
Molloy, Nicky Sweeney, Adam Conway and John
Henderson.Team: Tadgh Dornan, Philip
Haughton, Eoin O' Dea, Cathal O Dualleachain, Enda Molloy, Arron
Murphy, (4pts), Cillian Molloy, Daire Lohan, Nicky Sweeney,(1.02)
Adam O Conway,(1pt) David Sullivan, Daniel Molloy,(1gl) Harry
Stephenson, John Henderson, Daragh Maloney, Dan Mc Cann. Thanks to
all the players, and their mentorsMichael O' Dea, Chris
Masterson and Liam Mc Graynor for their commitment during the year.
The boys still have the minor hurling championship to complete. We
play Carnew in the championship next Sunday
31stOctober in Arklow at 12.30pm.
|Minor Football Championship win|
21 July, 2010
Bray Emmets 1.12 -St. Kevin's
This was a second win for our boys minor footballers when they
beat St. Kevin's in Old Connaught on Wednesday 21st
July. The game had a late start when the appointed referee failed
to show up but Ciaran Gaskin, of Eire Og was a very able
replacement. Bray made a good start and scored some fine points but
as in the Baltinglass game a week previously, there was some poor
finishing to the many chances created. St. Kevin's came more into
the game and scored some nice points. The Half time score was 5pts
to 2pts in Brays favour. Bray kept the pressure on their opponents
in the second half and picked off some lovely scores. A John
Henderson goal midway through the second half gave Bray a good lead
which they held to the end of the game. Bray lost their fine
midfielder Adam O Connor through injury in the second half. The
team and management wish Adam a speedy recovery. This was a good
team performance with some excellent individual displays from Eoin
O Dea, Philip Haughton, Aaron Murphy, Alan Cleary, Adam O Connor
and John Henderson. Team: Tadgh Dornan, Ciaran O' Connor, Aaron
Murphy, Eoin O' Dea, Paddy O' Toole, Diarmuid Masterson, Philip
Haughton, David Sullivan(2pts), Adam O' Connor (1pt), Alan Cleary
(2pts), John Henderson (1.01), Harry Stephenson , Nicky Sweeney
(2pts), Mikey Lee(1pt), Daniel Molloy(1pt), Patrick Tunney(1pt),
Dan Mc Cann(1pt) , Enda Molloy. The next game is at home against
Luke O' Toole's on Wed 28.7.
16 October, 2008
Bray minor footballers produced a whirlwind
start which saw them through in the Wicklow final against a
very well coached Blessington side on a scoreline of 2-6 to 1-6,
thus completing a great double with the hurlers who had already won
the County Championship.
The victory completed a magic trip by this squad who have won all
the championships from U-10 (North), U-12,U-14, U-16 and U-18
on Sunday. What makes the feat special is the team also won
the All Ireland Feile in Tyrone four years ago, which gives them an
unique place in the history of Wicklow football.
The group came together in 1999 as eight and nine year olds
and it was as much this long and enduring camaraderie and
friendship which won out at Aughrim on Sunday as any
great play on the day. Having had a dream start in
which they were 2-4 to 0-1 up after 16 minutes, Bray then missed a
series of chances with the light wind in their back and by
giving away a penalty and two pick-up frees late on, opened the
door for Blessington to resurrect themselves on the
The West boys stormed into contention
with four unanswered points in the second half which left just the
minimum between the contenders as they headed down the final
straight.It was then that the Bray lads rallied each other and the
fact that they didn't let the ball pass the half way line for the
last five minutes was testament to the blood and guts approach
which said: "We will not be beaten.".
With Man of the match David 'Gigo' Haughton scything through the
defence with strength and pace and Jordan Egan dominating midfield,
it provided the platform for big John Breslin to race through and
score a brilliant point which lifted the siege.
With time almost up, Gearoid O Murchu won a
wonderful free with sheer persistence which refused to
allow Blessington comfort on the ball and Paul Cunningham
slotted over the free to signal a cherished victory.Bray
though know only too well that it was that first quarter when they
played a perfect game of intense football which closed down
Blessington at every turn which won the day. That and the tactic of
finding both Cunningham and Breslin with long balls had
the losers in all sorts of trouble from which they never fully
Two frees from Cunningham and then an exquisite pass from him to
Gigo saw the centre-forward draw first blood with a goal at the
second attempt. Moments later the marauding Egan cut through the
defence for the umpteenth time and his handpass left Cunningham in
the clear to slot home Bray's second strike.
The placing of Egan - the best minor midfielder in
the county - at right half forward was a master stroke by the Bray
bench as most of the damage came from the fact that he lorded it in
the air and then had the pace to cut ribbons through the
Mark Nolan was magnificent until shipping an accidental high tackle
and Aco Keating's industry directly led to the first goal.
With ten minutes to go to half-time, Bray's sprint from the blocks
began to sag and they plainly had not the fitness to go all the way
with the intense game set out for them.
This saw Blessington come storming back and it
was then that the Bray management had to thank their backs for the
amount of covering and harassing they put their bodies through in
the cause of the Bray jersey.
Sean Byrne was magnificent at fullback, pitted against no less an
opponent than Dean Siney, who had scored 3-6 in the semi-final
against Luke O'Tooles. Byrne's performance of strength, speed and
pure skill kept a tight rein on Blessington's talisman and when he
won one particular head to head duel midway through the second half
which saw the forward having to foul him, it was a seminal
moment in the game's many turnings.
Eoghan Wogan was another hero. What's new? He not
just won ball deep in Bray territory but had the presence of mind
to travel with it until he could give a telling pass. The two
Murphys - Cailean and Aaran were again magnificent and
Adam Benson fought a chest infection to give his all and in the end
two of his ball from defence carried a lot of weight further up
field. Captain Conor Power held the high ground against an array of
opponents and under his leadership, Bray didn't know the meaning of
the word lose.
Conor Thomas had been this team's goalie for six years but played
outfield in the first half because of his outstanding
This gave Stephen Carton his chance between the sticks and when he
got injured making a brilliant save just before half-time which
affected his vision, Bray were lucky to have Thomas to revert to
the No 1 position. And he produced one great save at a
crucial time to keep out a certain goal.
In the forwards, Gigo's performance on no less an opponent
than Ronan Doyle was magnificent as he kept his team going
forward and ended up with 1-1 to his name. When Gigo gets that look
in his eye, other teams should watch out. And he had it yesterday.
So too had Egan who missed the semi-final win over St Pats.
Now here was a man who played two games rolled into one for Bray on
Sunday and with a little luck, his runs could have yielded a goal
or two to his personal account.O Murchu worked and foraged in
a role unfamiliar to him to allow the long ball into the deadly duo
of Cunningham and Breslin. The front two are hard to mark and in
fairness Blessington had two great players on them - Paul
McLoughlin and Niall Keogh - who fought for every ball as if their
lives depended on it.
In the end though, the Bray lads held sway and had their enormous
commitment to the cause rewarded.
Bray were forced to lline out without two first team
stalwarts - the dashing Fergal Devlin in defence who broke
three ribs playing rugby and the high fielding Ronan Cunningham in
attack, who dislocated his shoulder in training. On the day
the Emmets were lucky to have Sean Prendergast to come in, for he
saw a lot of ball and was unlucky not to get at least two or three
scores. With Aaran Murphy injured, Devlin showed great bravery in
going on and playing brilliantly, carrying a series of attacks to
the Blessington team from deep. Robin O'Sullivan strength and
coolness on the ball was vital in those final ten minutes when he
won and kept possession to great effect as a third
The Bray Management of PJ Cunningham, Pat Wogan and Frank
Devlin would like to thank the subs which weren't used, Dylan
Kavanagh, Chris O'Connor, Niall McCague, James Talbot, Ross Murphy
(Injured), Ronan Cunningham (Injured) for the way they supported
the team right through. And they would also like to thank Darragh
Scully for his expert input from outside and that of John
Henderson, Liam McGraynor and Dave Barry for their commitment from
within the club to ensuring the Bray minors ended up as champions.
As Peter Keogh said afterwards - Double champs,because earlier this
summer, the hurlers won their minort championships.
BRAY EMMETS - S Carton; C Murphy, S Byrne, E Wogan; A Murphy, A
Benson, C Power (Capt); A Keating, M Nolan; J Egan, D Haughton
(1-1), G O Murchu; P Cunningham (1-4, 0-3 f), J Breslin
(0-1), C Thomas. Subs S Prendergast for S Cartopn (inj). F
Devlin for A Murphy, R O'Sullivan for M Nolan.
11 August, 2008
Bray 1-11 Baltinglass
Nothing, they say concentrates the mind like a
hanging. And Baltinglass knew that if they lost to Bray in
Stratford last Wednesday, they would be drawn and quartered as
well, as far as this year's minor championship was concerned.
So the westerners, a team which had shipped heavy
beatings over the first four games of the league system, came out
with all guns blazing determined to give it their best shot. With
the wind in their backs, they went route one and when the
Bray defence gave them a few presents early on, they decided to
keep playing in the area where it suited them best - the
opposing goal area.
Bray were immensely obliging by allowing themselves
to be blocked, failing to hold onto the ball and kicking balls out
over the sideline. It charged up the home fans and for all the
world it looked as if Baltinglass had found some new players such
was the transformation in their display from previous outings.
Despite losing by 1-4 to 0-2, Bray still showed a lot of
courage to face down this adversity and by halftime, inspired by
Jordan Egan at midfield, they had reduced the deficit to a goal.
Indeed with a bit of luck Egan would have added a penalty but his
shot just shaved the post in going wide. Forced to lineout without
three of their normal forwards, Paul Cunningham and Ronan
Cunningham, both injured and Gearoid O Murchu due to holidays, Bray
stuttered to find a fluency in this sector, but two points from
Robin O'Sullivan and three from Egan kept them in
The arrival of Paul Cunningham put some pep into the
Bray attack on the turnover and within two minutes they had tacked
on two points through an Egan free and a John Breslin point.
Breslin then reacted quickest around the goalmouth to lash the ball
home and put Bray into a lead they would subsequently hold til the
end of the game. Cunningham put over points with either foot to put
daylight between the sides and Egan weighed in with two more placed
ball, one from a 45 to see Bray home on a 1-11 to 1-7
Mark Nolan was outstanding in the Bray defence, not just blotting
out his man, but clearing ball after ball. After a shaky start Sean
Byrne settled in to have a strong second half and Conor Power
returned to something like his old swashbuckling self with a number
of high catches and long clearances. Egan ruled the roost in
midfield for the entire hour with the forwards showing
up inconsistently except for the efforts of Dylan Kavanagh
and John Breslin, who made a great block at the other end of the
field near the end, when Baltinglass were looking for a goal to get
them back into the game.
BRAY EMMETS: S Carton; S Byrne, M Nolan, C Murphy; E
Wogan, A Benson, C Power; J Egan (0-5), A Keating; R O'Sullivan
(0-2), D haughton, F Devlin; S Prendergast, J Breslin (1-1), D
Kavanagh. Subs, P Cunningham (0-2), C Thomas, A Murphy, R Murphy, N
4 August, 2008
Bray minor footballers were busy last week with two games within
two days which resulted in a 2-11 to 0-5 win over St Pats and a
3-18 to 2-2 victory over Luke O'Toole's, both games in Old Conna.
The one major difference between the two matches was Bray's
profligacy in the Pat's match where they recorded twenty wides in
the course of the hour, many of them unforced errors. That put
enormous pressure on the team despite the midfield monopoly
they enjoyed through Jordan Egan and Aco Keating. Indeed despite
all the possession, it was Pats who scored first on their first
excursion up the field. Gearoid O' Murchue, fresh from his
man of the match award in the county hurling final, luckily showed
up after that and his 1-1 on top of Egan's opening point and
Robin O'Sullivan goal, gave Bray a 2-2 to 0-2 half-time lead,
but wind assisted.
As often happens though, Bray dominated even more against
the elements and with four defenders, Adam Benson, Sean Byrne,
Conor Power and the irrepressible Cailean Murphy all marauding up
field to score, the team settled and while continuing to miss
a lot, they played much better.
Best for the team on the night were Cailean Murphy, Fergal
Devlin, Egan and Keating as well as O Murchu who ended up with 1-3
to his credit. John Breslin won a lot of ball at full-forward and
hopefully will begin to use his size and strength more and
more to the team's advantage. If he does, he will take a lot of
watching from opponents.
4 August, 2008
Bray Emmets 3-18Luke O'Toole's 2-2
Against Luke O'Toole's, there was less squandermania about and
from the off Paul Cunningham was causing all sorts of trouble
to a visitor's team missing two of their best players in county
minors Robert Lambert and Stephen Dillon. And when O'Toole's
scored a goal to cut Bray's deficit to three points midway through
the half, it seemed as if the home side would face a real fight.
However with Keating in particular showing county minor
midfielder Brian Walsh a clean pair of heels time and again and
Ronan Cunningham catching everything around the middle, Bray had
the lion's share of possession and when Paul Cunningham goaled five
minutes from half-time to bring his first half tally to 1-5, it
was the tonic Emmet's needed to lead 1-11 to 1-0
at the interval.
With Egan getting stronger as the game progressed and David
Haughton winning a huge amount of breaks, Bray kept on the
front foot and goals by Haughton and Keating early on
killed off the game as a contest. The one black spot on proceedings
was a late leg injury to Ronan Cunningham who was the man of the
match with the possession he gained for his team, scoring two
points as a bonus from the half forward line as well. Stephen
Carton saved a penalty in the game but was not as lucky when the
referee ordered a retake. Mark Nolan steadied the ship at
fullback and Cailean Murphy was outstanding in the first half
where time and again he emerged with the ball from deep in defence.
The forwards played well but still have to click as a unit. But
there is a huge improvement from game to game and that is what the
management want from them at this stage.
This Wednesday, Bray travel to Baltinglass and then have three
weeks off before their last group match, away to Newtown.
16 July, 2008
Bray minor footballers got back on winning way with
a comprehensive win over neighbours Eire Og at Old Conna last
Traditionally these matches have always been close and competitive
but Bray got off to a flying start and were twelve points up within
ten minute, thanks to some marauding running from midfielders
Jordan Egan and Aco Keating which resulted in each player raising
the green flag.With the wind literally at their backs, as
well, Bray went on to build on this whirlwind start and in
the end ran out 4-22 to 0-4 winners. Greystones knew their fate
long before the end but it's to their credit that the fought
gamely to the final whistle against a Bray side who were stung by
their previous week's defeat in Blessington.
There were a series of great performances around the
team with captain on the night Adam Benson leading from the
centre-back position where he was simply magnificent. Not far
behind was Cailean Murphy who stormed out of defence time and again
to set up a series of attacks. It was also good to see Mark Nolan
patrol his square with the authority of old alongside the
powerful Sean Byrne.
With midfield dominant the attack functioned very effectively with
Robin O'Sullivan leading the way with 1-5 to his credit. Others to
shine included John Breslin and Sean Prendergast, who scored 1-2
Lineout: S Carton, C Murphy, M Nolan, S Byrne (0-1);
F Devlin, A Benson (0-1), A Murphy; A Keating (1-0), J Egan (1-1);
R Cunningham (0-1), D Haughton (0-2), D Kavanagh (0-1), R
O'Sullivan (1-5), J Breslin (0-4), G O'Murchu (0-3). Subs S
Prendergast (1-2), N McCague (0-1)
9 July, 2008
Our minor footballers got off to a bad start in the quest
for glory by losing the first of their championship games, played
on a league basis, to a very well-drilled Blessington team, away
last Wednesday. The losing margin 1-12 t0 0-8 could have been less
except the side elected to go for goals in the last ten minutes to
bring them back into the game, but overall they played
second-fiddle to the west side right through the field
It was obvious that while the Bray lads have sat back on
their laurels over the past few years, other teams have caught up
or passed them out. There were some mitigating circumstances with
four of the original team having to pull out through illness,
injury and unavailability. But from the word go, it
was the home side who dictated the pace of the game and were
well worth their half-time lead of 0-7 to 0-4. Bray's one flash of
genius saw a great run by Jordan Egan ending when he was tripped
going though. Paul Cunningham's penalty had the goalkeeper going
the wrong way but unluckily for Bray, it tipped the crossbar and
went over instead of under.
With the way the game was balanced, a goal was always
going to be decisive. Aarron Murphy brought a great save from the
opposing keeper before Blessington got the all important score
after ten minutes of the half, a Dean Siney centre not being dealt
with in the full-back line. Bray showed commendable courage by
refusing to throw in the towel and battled gamely to the end.
Cunningham had a chance but the ball flashed over the bar
again when a goal was needed, Aco Keating's great run ended
with the ball going well wide of the target and Aaron Murphy senior
was just a little shy of getting onto a ball for a flick into an
A time for soul searching on and off the sidelines
then for this group. They now can either knuckle down to the task
at hand or watch as other take on the mantle of best
team in this grade.