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Fri, Nov
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Two South Mayo schools chase one dream

Sport

DOING THEIR HOMEWORK Mayo footballer Donie Vaughan is pictured with Ballinrobe Community School players John Heraty and Jamie Walsh in Vaughan Shoes, Ballinrobe last week ahead of next Saturday’s All-Ireland Post-Primary Schools Senior ‘B’ football championship semi-final.

Mike Finnerty

TWO South Mayo schools’ football teams are just 60 minutes away from realising their childhood dreams of playing at Croke Park in an All-Ireland Final.
That is the prize on offer for both the St Colman’s College, Claremorris and Ballinrobe Community School next Saturday as they go into battle in their respective ‘A’ and ‘B’ senior championship semi-finals.
Both schools had been hoping that the matches would be fixed as a ‘double-header’ but it was confirmed last night (Monday) that the games will be played at separate venues.
St Colman’s take on reigning All-Ireland champions, St Brendan’s of Killarney, at Cusack Park in Ennis on Saturday at 2pm.
At the same time, ten miles over the road at Tulla GAA Grounds, Ballinrobe CS meet Coachford College of Cork in the last four of the ‘B’ competition.
Last Friday morning The Mayo News was in Hollymount to meet some footballers and coaches from both schools.
We were there to talk to some of the players about the biggest games of their lives, and to highlight the work being done by St Colman’s and Ballinrobe far from the madding crowds.
Speaking of crowds, hundreds of raucous students from Claremorris and Ballinrobe are making the journey to Clare next Saturday to roar their schoolmates on, along with proud parents, siblings, friends and relations.
Plus, with some team-mates from clubs like Mayo Gaels, Carras and Hollymount/Carramore featuring for both St Colman’s and Ballinrobe, another layer is added to what is already a unique occasion for South Mayo.
Almost every single club in the division, plus Clonbur from across the border in Galway, is represented between the two schools and the area has thrown their weight behind both Colman’s and Ballinrobe CS in recent weeks.
The South Mayo GAA Board have got in on the act too.
Chairman Mike King and his colleagues have organised a table quiz fundraiser for the two schools to help with the costs of a long championship run.
It takes place tomorrow night (Wednesday) at 9pm in the Dalton Inn, Claremorris. All are welcome.
In Ballinrobe, local businesses like Vaughan Shoes, JJ Burke Car Sales and the local Town Traders Association have stepped up to sponsor jerseys and tops.
While in Claremorris, Danny McHugh of Supermac’s (a former St Colman’s footballer himself back in the day) is also backing the local college all the way.
It’s great to see, and hopefully both schools, and all concerned, will get one more day out before these great journeys come to an end!

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