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News from Queen's Ladies Gaelic Football Club 2003/2004

Chairperson: Marcella Monaghan Enniskillen
Secretary: Ann-Marie O’Reilly St. Pats, Donagh
Treasurer: Niamh McGowan Enniskillen
Members: Éimear Stewart Moneyglass
Emma Foy Tempo
Gillan Fleming Ardglass
Donna Mc Caughey Louth
Shauna Campbell Augher
Pauline Mallon Ballyhegan

Northern Colleges League
Division 1: - QUB firsts got off to an impressive start with victories over St. Mary’s and UUC. They were defeated by UUJ and their strongest rivals consequently beat them in the league final, which was watched in front of a large crowd at the DUB. Division 2: - QUB seconds recorded an impressive victory over UUM, UUJ again proved too strong but our seconds team took part in a number of highly competitive challenge matches against Southern colleges in preparation for the Dowd Cup. The team were also beaten finalists in the All-Ireland Division 3 League.

O’Connor Cup
QUB recorded impressive victories over both St. Mary’s title favourites UUJ to qualify for the competition, held in Castlebar. QUB received the hardest imaginable draw and were beaten by the eventual overall winners Sligo IT in the first round.

All-Ireland Freshers’ Blitz
An extremely enjoyable day was had by all club members at the Freshers Blitz hosted by DCU (Dublin). Our freshers were unsuccessful in winning the competition, but proceeded to the semi-final stages.

The highlight of the clubs year was the hosting of the Dowd Cup 2000 on Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th February. The committee set out to host the biggest and best event ever and we were acknowledged and praised at all levels for hosting a wonderful competition.

Saturday 19thFebruary
With QUB hosting the event this made the team even more determined to seal the victory for four years in a row. However disappointment was to be the result for the girls when they were beaten by St. Mary’s in the first round of the Dowd Cup on Saturday afternoon. This was the first time in the history of both colleges that St Mary’s had beaten Queens. Earlier that afternoon UUJ sealed victory over UUC. Our seconds’ team were beaten by UUJ (II) 0.1 to 2.11 and by the eventual winners St Mary’s Strawberry Hill, London, 0.2 to 2.2 in the league section of the McNally Plate. After the semi-finals, mass was held in the Chaplaincy on Elmwood Avenue for all competitors followed by a Karaoke and Disco in the Speakeasy in the Students Union.

Sunday 20th February
In the Dowd Cup UUJ went on to narrowly defeat St. Mary’s in an exciting final on Sunday afternoon and St. Mary’s Strawberry Hill in their first year competing in the McNally Plate defeated UUJ (II). After the finals a buffet was served and the presentations were made in the Dub Pavilion to the winning teams and those players selected for the Ulster Colleges Combined Team.

Sponsorship Committee
The committee divided into subgroups and each obtained brilliant results. The sponsorship committee was headed by Éimear Stewart who obtained sponsorship from various sources. The most prominent source was Bank of Ireland who sponsored the new Dowd Cup. She secured sponsorship from the Irish News so that every girl who participated in the event received a souvenir t-shirt. Other sponsorship came from Gaelic Gear, who supplied a Dowd Cup 2000 ball to every team. None of these ideas had ever been present at previous Dowd Cup events.

PR Committee
This was headed by Marcella Monaghan and Pauline Mallon and probably the most important in terms of raising the profile of the ladies games in general and the status of our university. QUB LFGC officially launched the competition on the Monday prior to the event and this was attended by dignitaries with our university, members of competing universities, sponsors and members of the GAA at Ulster and All-Ireland council level. The highlight of this launch was the arrival of Pro-Vice-Chancellor Bob Cormack who spoke on behalf of Queens. Both UTV and BBC attended the launch and it secured prime time TV the following evening. Dowd Cup 2000 also appeared in the Irish News on four evenings and in the Belfast Telegraph on two occasions. Possibly the biggest achievement was securing two full page articles on two consecutive weeks in Ireland’s largest selling GAA magazine, The Hogan Stand. Ladies football features very little in this magazine and to get two articles regarding Ulster Colleges football was a great feat at promoting our university and our game.

Other Committees
These worked tirelessly at providing entertainment, maintaining the VIP lounge, which was also a new innovation at the weekend. This was a lounge where parents, media and other guests could come and have light refreshments at any time during the day. Our last new feature of the weekend was to invite two school teams up to play a demonstration game between the two finals. Both spectators and competitors enjoyed this and it hopefully instilled an interest in college football among our younger generation.

Blues Awards
This year the club received 4 full blues. The awards were presented at the Blues dinner and the highlight of the night was our chairperson Marcella Monaghan who was selected to represent all students at the university. Marcella had to speak about her experience at Queens regarding sport and her speech was so impressive that it was printed in the Graduate magazine.

County and Club Successes
Many of our past and present players were involved in highly competitive football with their clubs and counties and several of our girls travelled to America in the summer vacation to play football there. Special congratulations must go to past members Cathy Gallagher, Martina McCafferty and Maura McCabe, and to our current stars Sinead McAvoy, Marianna Devlin and Meave McConville who were members of the successful Down team, which won the Junior All-Ireland Final.

Women in Gaelic Games Conference
Eight members of our club were invited to attend the first ever Women in Gaelic games Conference chaired by Sean McCague President of the GAA. Guest speakers included President Mary McAleese. This was a very historical event for our club to be a part of.

Managers (Firsts Team)
Name: Martina McCafferty
Club: Breda, Co. Down

Name: Cathy Gallagher
Club: Breda, Co. Down

Managers (Seconds Team)
Name: Diarmuid Cahill (Chicken)
Club: An Riocht, Co. Down

Name: Seamie Duffy
Club: Cullyhanna, Co. Armagh

Name: Declan Morgan
Club: Tullylish/Carryduff, Co. Down

Ulster Combined Colleges Representatives:
Catriona Brady, Orlaith Kirk, Sharon McGovern and Maeliosa Hardy.

All-Ireland Combined Colleges Representatives:
Orlaith Kirk and Maeliosa Hardy.

Club Awards:
Club Awards were presented to the following at the Dinner Dance in the Carrickdale Hotel;

Player of the Year: Orlaith Kirk, Noamh Malachi,
Clubperson of the Year: Éimear Stewart, Moneyglass
Players' Player of the Year:
Fresher of the Year:
Most Improved Player of the Year:

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