RACKARD LEAGUE IN COURT N.S.
The Rackard League has always played a huge part in the lives of pupils from Court N.S., and the pupils compete in Camógie, Hurling, Gaelic Football for boys and girls and in the Mini Sevens and Skills Tournaments.
Court N.S. join with St. Joseph's N.S., Kilmuckridge for the main Rackard League Camógie, Hurling and Gaelic Football competitions. Over the years the two schools have shared many highs and lows on the playing fields of Wexford. No matter what the results were, friendships forged and skills and lessons learned, endure to this day.
Court N.S. is inextricably linked to the Buffers Alley GAA Club. As one of the foremost GAA Clubs in the country it is unique in Irish GAA history as the club to win All-Ireland Senior Cub and Seven-a-Side in both Camógie and Hurling and past pupils of Court N.S. played significant parts in all of the victories. The fact that most of these players started to hone their skills in the Rackard League is not coincidental.
Two past pupils and former Rackard League stars deserve special mention namely Margaret Lacey and Séamus Kavanagh.
In 1968 Margaret Lacey (nee O'Leary) from Garrydaniel was the star performer on the first Wexford Senior Camógie team to win the All-Ireland and currently coaches very successfully down the road in Oulart. Séamus was sub-goalie on the Wexford Senior Hurling team who won the All-Ireland in 1996 and continues to develop and inspire young players as a teacher in Enniscorthy and a player and coach with the Alley.
All-Ireland Senior Club Camógie Champions, 1984.
(Past pupils of Court N.S. are shown in green.)
Back Row (left to right): Imelda O'Leary, Caroline O'Leary, Teresa Hobbs,Terry Butler, Geraldine Wynne, Kathleen Tonks, Ann Butler, Kate Sinnott.
Front Row ( l to r): Éilís Kavanagh, Bridie Doran, Dorothy Kenny, Gertrude O'Leary, Nora Gahan, Elsie Walsh, Stella Sinnott.
1989 All-Ireland Senior Club Hurling Champions.
Back Row (l-r): Tony Doran, Barry Murphy, Matty Foley, Paul Gahan, Henry Butler, Colin Whelan, Séan Whelan.
Front Row (l-r): Fr.Martin Casey, Mick Butler, Tom Dempsey, Pat Kenny, John O'Leary, Séamus O'Leary, Paddy Donohoe, Eamonn Sinnott.
Past pupils of Court N.S. are shown in orange.
Court N.S. Rackard League
7-a-side Co.Champions 1990.
Back Row (left to right): Fr.Stafford, Patrick Laffan, Liam Doran, Séan O'Brien, James Owens, Mrs. Murphy.
Front Row (l to r): Bertie Cousins, Alan Doyle, Paddy Kirwan, Nigel Murphy, Colin Fanning, and Mrs. Kenny.
Monamolin\Kilmuckridge Rackard League Runners Up
(Court N.S. pupils appear in blue)
Back Row (left to right): Tony Doran, Theo Butler, Ciarán Kenny, Patrick Whelan, Willie Byrne, Pat Doran, Brian Farrell, Paddy Rath, Tony Creane.
Front Row (l to r): Anthony Doran, Martin Whelan, Peter Breen, Kevin O'Leary, Edward Roche, Darren Murphy, Míchéal Kelly, Robin Johnston, Stephen Doran.
odyssey that was the 2001 Rackard League Hurling campaign ultimately ended in a
four point defeat for the Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin NS team at the hands of
neighbours and great rivals Monageer \ Boolavogue in this year's final.
District was the toughest district for qualification, with the boys playing no
less than five group games in which they defeated Kilanerin, Castletown,
Ballygarret, Camolin and Craanford to qualify to meet Ballygarret in the
game was played in Páirc Úi Síocháin in Gorey and proved to be a much tougher
game than the earlier round. However a tremendous team performance saw
Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin prevail in the second half and following their victory
it was a proud captain James Foley, who accepted the District Cup from Gorey
Rackard League Chairperson, Tomás Keegan.
is worth noting that, of the six Rackard League Finalists in 2001, Kilmuckridge
\ Monamolin NS was the only team to emerge from their group undefeated.
In the County Semi-Final Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin NS were pitted against Ramsgrange. A quirk of fate saw Mr. Martin Lyons coaching Ramsgrange, and Martin himself was a past pupil of Kilmuckridge NS where his father Ned was Headmaster during Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin NS halcyon days of the mid seventies.
Semi-Final was undoubtedly the boys’ finest performance as before the game
illnesses and injury had threatened the stability of a very settled team.
Playing with a very strong wind in the first half Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin NS
made very little use of it and turned around only one point in front as the
second half began. Ramsgrange tore into the game in the second half and in
their very first attack drew level and in the next attack hit the post before
the ball was cleared.
was then that the fighting qualities that are the trademark of Buffers Alley
GAA club started to show. Every player wearing the green and gold rolled up
their sleeves and dug in. Every ball was chased, every attempted clearance
blocked, where there was one player from Ramsgrange there were two from Kilmuckridge
\ Monamolin. Players moved to and played out of position as every single player
gave everything to fashion a remarkable six-point victory and a first
Rackard League Final appearance since1996.
The schools since 1977 hadn’t won a Rackard League Title, the first having been won in 1975. Trainer Matty Foley had been star goalie on the 1975 & '77 teams and Matty with eight of his '75 & '77 teammates won All-Ireland Senior Club medals with Buffers Alley in 1989. The 70's teams also had a diminutive corner forward with an eye for goal. This guy popped up as a corner forward again in 1996 and showed his eye for goal (again) and won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal...he also picked up an All-Star Award that year.... his name was Tom Dempsey.
two schools were a hive of activity before the final, with banners and
headbands being made by the dozen. A large and colourful crowd from the parish
made their way to Enniscorthy but on the day Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin NS had to
give way to a Monageer \ Boolavogue team who were hungrier throughout the game,
emerging victorious on a 2-7 to 2-3 score line. In what was the most evenly
contested final of the three, Monageer scored their insurance point with only
one minute on the clock and Kilmuckridge \ Monamolin pressing for, what
was to remain, the elusive equalising goal.
Though disappointed after the game the boys conducted themselves in a very well behaved manner and sportingly waited for the presentation of the cup to the victors. In the dressing room afterwards Matty Foley thanked the boys for their efforts over the last four years and wished those leaving primary school all the best as they begin their secondary education. Throughout the year the team behaved impeccably and were a credit to themselves, their schools and especially their families.
evening in the Buffers Alley GAA Complex the panel was treated to a meal by the
BOM of Kilmuckridge and Monamolin NS and believe it or not after the meal and
to the amazement of the parents present, the entire panel took to the field and
proceeded to play backs and forwards, undeterred by the afternoons defeat.
such unquenchable spirit it is only a matter of time before Kilmuckridge \
Monamolin NS capture that elusive Rackard League title.
The background music is suitably called “The Ash Plant.”