Sports

Girls hoping to create history with Ulster final win for school

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

THE corridors of St Mark's High School in Warrenpoint are adorned with photographs of successful sporting teams from it opened almost 50 years ago.

Once the kingpins in the Vocational Schools' Championships, with numerous Ulster and All- Ireland titles, the boys continue to go from strength to strength in Ulster Colleges' Football.

They have secured an U16 title in their first year followed by success in both the O'Doherty Shield and O'Doherty Cup last year for the U18s.

In between the boys' football team photographs are those who have represented St Mark's in camogie, hurling, cross-country and netball.

Of all the sports played in St Mark's, ladies Gaelic football is the one that has yet to receive its place in the history books.

No ladies Gaelic team from St Mark's has ever won an Ulster title and there is no recollection of a team having ever taken part in an Ulster final, despite the number of excellent clubs that feed into the school.

Ladies football has been on the rise in St Mark's over the past five years, with increased participation and appearances in Ulster quarter finals and semi-finals but, this year their U14s have went that step further to reach the Ulster final.

This week, they will battle it out with St Aidan's Comprehensive School, Cootehill, Co. Cavan for the Erne Shield, mindful of the fact that St Aidan's defeated them this year in the group stages.

St Mark's earned a narrow victory over neighbours St Mary's, Newry in the first round of games before suffering defeat to St Aidan's, Cootehill.

Having received a walk-over from St Mogue's Bawnboy (Cavan) in their last group game, they qualified for the quarter final stages where they defeated St Mary's from Derry City.

The semi-final against Victoria College, Belfast saw the Warrenpoint girls go through to contest the Ulster final this week .

The purple and black flags have already started to fly from the gates of the school and by Thursday, it is expected to reach fever pitch as preparations are made for this momentous occasion.

The girls know they have already made history, but they are determined to go that extra mile to bring home a first ladies Ulster title for St Mark's.

The game against St Aidan's is expected to take place on Thursday with the time and venue to be confirmed.

St Mark's: Katie Braham, Eirnin Kelly, Tierna Savage, Nicole Carvill, Katie Howlett, Alannah Devlin, Clíodhna Murphy, Grace Tinnelly (JC), Alisha King (JC), Emma Caulfield, Saoirse Treanor, Leah Hayes, Annie Farrell, Sasha Millar, Rhiannon McKeown, Shari McNally, Caitlin Rice, Ema Karnauskaite, Sorcha McMullan, Róisín Cullen, Katie McAleenan, Emily Fegan, Erin Lundy, Amy Turley, Ríonach Kelly, Lauren Quinn, Erin Rooney and Cara O'Hanlon.

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