On Thursday 27th of February the junior soccer team took to the pitch at Greystones United to take on O'Connell CBS in the quarter-final of Leinster league division two. Having already conquered division two of the Wicklow-Wexford league the confidence levels were high as St. David's entered into uncharted territory.
Both teams began the game in nervous fashion with neither group of players able to take the ball down and play much football. What was certain from the onset was that the Dublin school were extremely physical and had certainly made the trip down to pick up a victory.
Halfway through the first half O'Connell schools were awarded a free-kick inside the Greystones half. The winger put a great ball into the David's box and the ball was inadvertently tuned to the net by the unfortunate Dan Hicks who was retreating towards his own goal. This setback prompted Greystones to up their work-rate and they managed to create some decent openings in the other half of the field, firstly through Mark Hayden and then through Michael Martin. The game remained at one nil until the half-time break with David's just about shading the possession in the remainder of the first-half.
The second half began with a period of dominance for St. David's along with some very good defeneding from the Dublin school. The O'Connell CBS goalkeeper pulled off some good saves but David's will rue the quality of their finishing. A long ball out from the back resulted in O'Connell CBS winning a free-kick outside the Greystones penalty area. A very nice finish into the bottom corner, albeit against the run of play at this stage, seen David's fall two goals behind.
St. David's pushed hard for the remainder of the half and despite several shots on target they weren't able to get that illusive goal that would have made all the difference. At the other end some excellent defending from Robert Shparuta and some super saves from keeper Ben Hogan kept the tie alive as O'Connell CBS pushed for a goal that would settled the contest. The introduction of Callum Smith upped the intensity levels as David's continued to create chances but the O'Connell's goalkeeper managed to keep a clean sheet.
This was a very competitive encounter from two school who had won their respective divisional titles. Well done to the junior team on an excellent year and with so many players underage again next year the future looks bright. Best of luck to O'Connell CBS in the semi-finals.
The game took place at Arklow United's excellent grounds on Friday 24th of January. The game started off strong for both teams. It was a very even start between the teams with some good attacks and quality defending at both ends.
David’s started to gain a foothold into the game with some great runs down the wing from Maks.
Eventually on another excellent run Maks turns his man puts the ball into the box and finds Michael Martin, who puts it into the net.
David's continued to pile on the pressure down the left side and this time Maks is fouled by the Arklow defender resulting in a penalty for the Greystones school. Unfortunaltely for David's Cian Bollard's penalty goes high and wide.
However, the disappointment is soon overcome as David's manage to win a second penalty which Daniel Hicks coolly dispatches to the net. Some more excellent play from Cian Bollard and Euan Brady resulted in another goal for St. David's, again from Michael Martin.
Just before half time David's amange to win yet another penalty. This time Maks steps up but finds his spot-kick saved by the keeper. However, he keeps his concentration and slots the rebound.
The second half was a much quieter affair with David's controlling the ball for long parts in the midfield area. Their possession eventually paid off as substitute Jakub Stanicki slotted home from close range with his very first touch.
The game finsihes 5-0 to St. David's who now march on to the final of the Wicklow-Wexford League Division Two versus Gaelcholáiste na Mara.
The final of the Wicklow-Wexford Junior League Division 2 took place on Friday 31st of January at Greystones United Football Club where St. David's Secondary School took on Gaelcholáiste na Mara.
The game began with both teams creating some half-chances with Cathan McCarthy and Robert Shparuta working hard to keep the Arklow school at bay. At the other end some dangerous balls into the box from lively wingers Mark Hayden and Maks Sluarczyk were posing difficulties for Galecholáiste Na Mara's defence.
Some good possession football from David’s resulted in a free kick from a dangerous position. Cian Bollard stepped up and curled the ball beautifully into the top corner of the net. Some excellent defending from the returning Dan Hicks and Cillian Gunning helped keep the Arklow scoreless for the remaining few minutes of the half.
The second half began in a similar fashion to the first with the Greystones school controlling the ball well and creating some half-chances. A period of sustained possession saw Michael Martin pick up the ball on the edge of the area and run at GCM's full back. Michael's pace took him by the defender before he calmly rolled the ball into the corner of the net.
Despite putting in a big effort the GCM attack never really looked likely to trouble Ben Hogan's goal. The midfield trio of Cian Bollard, Euan Brady and Cian Ó Longaigh performed tirelessly throughout the game to quench any danger.
The icing on the cake was applied by Mark Hayden who passed two Arklow defenders and the goalkeeper before tapping in from close range.
St. David's ran out deserving 3-0 winners. At the final whistle Captain Dan Hicks was presented with the Division 2 cup. Next up for the lads is a Leinster schools game which will take place after the mock examinations.
Well done to all players who were involved on the day or who have been involved throughout the year. A special mention to David O'Sullivan (and Andrew McCann) who have helped to look after this team throughout the earlier group stage and into the knockout rounds of this competition.
The strong Winter sun shone on Greystones United’s astro pitch for the minor boy’s semi-final against Carnew. The boys began the game sporting a 4-3-3 formation, their preferred setup seen throughout previous games in the competition.
Right from the off the intensity of the game was set by Carnew’s high press and physicality which was equally matched by David’s. Ten minutes into the game St. David’s won a corner which posed a real threat. A superb delivery by Lucas Du Preez found the head of Jakub Stanicki to give David’s the lead in what had started out as a fiercely competitive contest. The lead was short lived however as Carnew had the net rippling straight away to draw level. David’s strength from set pieces proved vital when Luke Van den Berg whipped in the ball and Alex Baines slotted home. Once again Carnew hit back with a vicious volley which found the bottom left corner of the goal. The teams went into the break level at two goals apiece.
St. David’s never really got going in the second half and conceded two sloppy goals. Injuries caused a shake up in the team which in the end proved vital. Best of luck to Carnew in the final.
Well done to the players who worked hard throughout the year.
On Friday the 17th of January St.David's Junior soccer team played against Enniscorthy Vocational College. The match was a quarter final of division two of the Wicklow-Wexford league. The match was played at home at Greystones football club.
The game began with an early attempt from Mark Hayden. St. David’s had the upper hand from an early stage and kept possession by moving the ball well on the pitch. There were plenty of attempts at goal, firstly from Cillian Gunning and Maks Sluarczyk, followed up by two further attempts from Roy Byrne. Shortly after Roy’s attempts Michael Martin scored the first goal of the match. Almost immediately Mark Hayden scored again making the score 2-0 to David’s. However after the second goal EVC started to try to make a comeback, putting more pressure on the lads and testing out goalkeeper Ben Hogan. The score remained 2-0 at half-time.
As the second half kicked off the lads got off to a great start. Only a couple of minutes in Euan Brady finished off a terrific move with a lovely finish.The defence in this half was fantastic with the Greystones school eager to keep hold of their clean sheet. It was clear that the lads now had the advantage over EVC as they were the more dominant attacking team. Euan Brady tagged on another goal for David’s as Cian Bollard put himself about in midfield. A couple more late goals from Callum Smith seen St. David’s secure a semi-final spot.
The semi-final will take place against Glenart College on the 24th of January.
The first and second year boys both had a match in early January against North Wicklow Educate Together School in Shoreline Greystones. Both of these matches had St. David’s coaches and supporters gripping onto their seats with eagerness and excitement.
In the opening game St. David's set out with an attacking game plan. During the majority of the quarters in the match Calvin Medidas was at the top of his game, scoring point after point. Well done Calvin! The final score of this match was 21-10 to St. David’s, congratulations boys.
After a short break it was the turn of the second year boys. A special mention to Mike O’Neill and Charlie Ward on their excellent performances during the match. There was an even bigger point difference at the end of this match, with a final score of 23-8 to St. David’s, well done everyone!
A massive thank you to Ms. Delaney and Ms. Courtney for coaching these boys to success and for taking time out of their day to bring the boys to their matches.
The first year boys played their second group stage match against St. Kilian's at Greystones United. It was the second match for the managerial team of Mr. Gardiner and Michael Martin.
The Greystones side began well and were the better team in the first half. Two goals from Captain Max Moody put David’s two goals ahead. Kilian’s scored a free kick late in the half which left the game finely poised at 2-1 at half time. An inspirational half-time team talk from the managerial team rallied the troops to carry on in the second half. The game was tense and required a superb piece of play from the lads to secure the victory. Max Synnott and Ben O’Connor linked up to slip through Max Moody who finished his superb hat trick in style.
Iwo Horowski came on late in the half to sure up the defence and made many crucial challenges.
The game ended 3-2 and with David’s now only needing a draw against Dublin Oak Academy to progress to the knockout stages of the competition.
In the final group stage game St. David’s needed at least a draw to advance from the group. A win would secure top of the group and a home tie in the semi-final.
Right after kick-off the sun came out and despite the cold it was an ideal day for football.
St. David’s immediately started well sporting a 4-3-3 attacking formation with the wingers Tom Martin and James Hayden looking dangerous in attack. This plan of attacks paid off quickly when James Hayden latched onto a slide rule pass and slipped the ball past the keeper to give David’s the lead. Shortly after another through ball, this time from Jakub Stanicki put Tom Martin through on goal. Martin found the net to make it 2-0. Just before half-time a moment of improvisation from James Hayden put David’s three goals up at the break.
The second half consisted of a number of counter attacks which lead to three more goals. two of which came from goals from Jakub Stanicki and a final one from Charlie Farrell.
Overall it was a superb performance from the lads. A semi final awaits against Coláiste Bhríde Carnew in a weeks time.
Congratulations to all involved.
At half eleven the first year boys soccer team made their way down to Greystones United Football club. It was a perfect morning for football as the wind had died down and the sun was shining. Right from kickoff you could tell it would be a competitive game.
David’s broke the deadlock early on when Ben Lawlor put in an inviting corner which Kai Hart volleyed home from twelve yards. The old cliche proved true as NWETSS hit back right from the get go after confusion at the back. David’s went behind soon after but Ben Lawlor hit a vicious first time shot into the bottom corner to level the score at two apiece. The final ten minutes of the first half consisted of an exchange of blows with Max Synnott scoring two incredible goals to send David’s into the break leading by four goals to three.
The second half was more of the same with both sides level for the majority. Finally, with only minutes remaining Darragh Shannon latched onto a loose ball and hit a rocket of a shot past the goalkeeper to make it five goals to four. Superb defensive work kept Educate together at bay and for the remaining few minutes.
Huge congratulations to all the lads involved and Mr. Gardiner for what many would consider a spark of tactical genius.
(Written by Michael Martin)
It was a windy, icy cold day down in Greystones United on the all weather pitch. The group consisting of predominantly second year students made their way down to the pitch to face East Glendalough in the first group stage match of the year.
St David’s started well with some good midfield work by Lucas Du Preez and Luke van den Bergh. In the middle of the first half van den Bergh whipped in a vicious corner which landed at the feet of Alex Baines who slotted it home, 1-0 to St. David’s. The horrific winds played a crucial part in St David’s conceding a goal late in the first half. After an attempted clearing header the wind took the ball back towards the David’s goal and fell perfectly to the East Glendalough striker. Half time 1-1.
St.David's dominated possession in the second half but were unable to put the ball in the back of the net. Final score 1-1.
Next up is Dublin Oak in the second group game!