Coleraine Champions for second year running

St. Pius X College: Coleraine Champions for second year running

The year 11 soccer team of Saint Pius X College entered the final of the Coleraine Cup against a much fancied Coleraine Academical Institute. Previous games between the schools resulted in a 4-1 win for Coleraine, so entering the final it is safe to say St Pius’ were the underdogs.

The game began at a frantic pace with Coleraine on the front foot, and with five minutes gone Aaron Cassidy in St Pius goal pulled of a stunning save to keep the score nil each.

St Pius’ gradually got into their rhythm and began winning the midfield battle led by the experienced Ronan Young, they pressed for a goal. With twenty minutes gone the elusive Jack McGuigan turned an opponent on the left wing drove inside the box and placed a fine strike into the bottom left hand corner of the goal.

Being one goal behind Coleraine battled back, and only for the defensive determination of Captain Thomas Donnelly, fellow defenders Devlin and McAtamney the result remained one nil. With five minutes to go in the first half with both teams cancelling each other out, a moment of brilliance from Man of the Match Conan McLernon saw the striker flick the ball over an opponents head, round another then round the keeper and fire home to make it two nil going in at half time.

Credit must go to St Pius as they continued in the same determined manner going into the second half with their aim of not giving their opponents anytime on the ball working to their advantage. This paid of dividends on 50 minutes when a free kick was awarded outside the box only to be beautifully dispatched into the top corner of the net by McGuigan. Coleraine looked shellshocked.

From that moment on the game was finished as a contest as Coleraine lost their discipline and had a man sent off. Respect must go to St Pius X who continued in the same determined manner and punished the favourites with a further three well taken goals, all from the emphatic McLernon.

A six nil victory was an incredible achievement especially going in as underdogs.

Aaron Cassidy in goal played his best game ever for the school, the defence of Donnelly, Devlin, McAtamney and Downey were immense throughout the competition. The workrate of Owen Doyle and Padraig McGrogan provided the foundations for the midfield of Conor Maunsell, Ronan Young and Conor Doherty to dominate. A great performance from McGuigan, but its fair to say the Man of the Match award went to Conan McLernon who was in scintillating form capping his performance off with four goals.

This was an excellent achievement for St Pius X College as it’s the second year running this team were crowned Coleraine champions.






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