Click on the above scoresheet to see how all schools fared today.
Communications & Press Officer Jason O’Connor reports on today’s National Secondary Schools Pitch & Putt event in Hillview where, thankfully, heavy raining this morning abated and allowed the competition to complete its initial course.
About 30 minutes into the ‘Shotgun Start’ getting underway the rain started. It got progressively worse and worse before play was stopped for well over 30 minutes as well and three of the Hillview greens eventually had to be cleared of water! The sun came out after though and while there was one more threat of another heavy downpour as the players started their second rounds thankfully it ended as planned without any need to reduce the number of holes.
When all the cards were checked only five shots separated the first five teams! St Brendans College Killarney A, thanks in no small part to a hole-in-one from Fintan Martin at the 13th hole where the winners at the end on 319 as Fintan’s team-mates of Cillian Courtney and Robbie Harnett brought in solid scores of two under par each in their five under par total. It meant a Munster and National double for the team after their win in Mallow two weeks earlier. Elder brothers of Cillian and Fintan had featured in the school’s previous second place finishes back in 2015 and 2018 but this was to be the year the ‘Sem’ broke through and won.
Colaiste An Chroabhin Fermoy A were an unlucky second in some ways especially after the best individual score of the day was shot by Cian O’Callaghan with 10 under. However, he alongside Cian McGirr and Brian Lombard eventually had to settle for second on four under par. Third place went to the Back 18’s meanwhile as after their A side had won the Leinster event in Ryston two weeks earlier, Ard Scoil Ciaran Naofa’s B team of Dominic Scully, Scott Griffith and Jack Devine claimed third from Westmeath’s Castlepollard Community College.
Both schools shot 323 but on countback the Offaly school were eight shots better as a second 18 of seven under par for Scully was a big factor in them claiming the prize. Jack Buckley had shot five under in total for Castlepollard as Colum and Tadhg Burns were the other members of that team. Colaiste Choilm Ballincollig were unlucky to miss out on the prizes in fifth meanwhile on 324 especially after Cian Murphy had seven under par for them with Zack Collins and Jack O’Keeffe his team-mates on the day.
The two St Francis Rochestown teams finished in sixth and seventh meanwhile on 326 and 327 respectively meaning on further analysis, only eight shots separated the Top 7 in the end.
Finally thanks to Hillview for being great hosts today as it was great to see this event back on its feet after a three-year absence.
Stats by John Manning
St. Brendan's College, Killarney become the first Co. Kerry school to win the National Secondary Schools’ Pitch & Putt tournament.
Cillian Courtney and Fintan Martin go one better than their respective brothers. Lorcan Martin was a member of the St. Brendan's College, Killarney team that finished second in 2018 while Creagh Courtney and Sean Courtney played on the St. Brendan's 2015 runner-up side.
Cillian Courtney joins Eoin Keating and Liam McGrath (both of Rochestown College, Cork) and Jonathan Daly and Liam Metcalfe (both of St. Joseph’s, Rochfortbridge) as holders of winners and runners-up medals.
The spread of the St. Brendan's College, Killarney scores (one stroke) equals the lowest by any winning side in the history of the All Ireland Schools tournament, equalling Davis College Mallow (99+99+100) at Lakeside in 2013.
St. Brendan's College, Killarney equal the low winning margin in the tournament’s history, matching the one stroke cushion enjoyed by Davis College, Mallow at Tullamore in 2017.
After Coláiste an Chraoibhín, Fermoy’s performance at Hillview, a Cork school finished runners-up for the sixth time.
Coláiste an Chraoibhín, Fermoy become the third school to achieve runners-up position for the second time (which ties the all-time record), joining St. Brendan's College, Killarney and Coláiste Chríost Rí, Cork.
Coláiste an Chraoibhín, Fermoy were previously the only school to have achieved first, second and third position over the years. That feat has now been replicated by St. Brendan's College, Killarney.
Ard Scoil Chiaráin Naofa B are the first Co. Offaly school to achieve a podium finish in the tournament’s history.
Hillview has now joined Tullamore and Lakeside as (jointly) the venue most often used for the All Ireland Schools’ final.
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