County titles in hurling and football put Araglen GAA 'back on the map'

Club's footballers captured the Junior C football title against Araglen, having been crowned 2020 hurling champions in the summer
County titles in hurling and football put Araglen GAA 'back on the map'

Araglen captain James Gus Kearney raises the trophy after defeating Lismire in the Bon Secours Cork JCFC final at Páirc Uí Rinn. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

CHRISTMAS came early for everybody associated with Araglen on Saturday evening last, as they secured Cork County Junior C Football Championship glory by defeating Lismire at Páirc Uí Rinn.

Araglen were good value for this championship success. They surged out of the traps and when it mattered most, they showed their clinical nature in the attacking third. Despite Lismire producing a gallant effort right until the end, Araglen celebrated in style after.

This was a well-deserved victory for Araglen and it caps off a fine few months for the club, who won a Junior B Hurling Championship title also just a few months ago.

Speaking to The Echo, a proud Araglen manager Denis Twomey summed up how much this victory meant to the club and also the small rural area as a whole.

“This is massive, for us to be in Páirc Uí Rinn two times in the one year is massive. You see the supporters there old and young here to watch us play.

It is fantastic for us. We have a small base of players, but we have young fellas coming up there at the moment and they are every bit as good as anyone else.

“They do anything you want and it encourages the older fellas to come training and keep training. So this is fantastic for our club.

“It was a great victory. We knew we were going to be in for a tough battle with Lismire and they really showed it there in the second half.

“Our backs played fantastic and we kept them out. We have good forwards, James Kearney is 42-43 years of age and he is a good forward. Any chance he gets he will get it.

“I have said to them all year that if they produce it and if they play well, the scores will come. They bought into the way we wanted to play football.

“I think everyone knows these days football is about possession, keep the ball and you must play it around. So they bought into that and this will only bring them on another bit.” 

 Joy for the Araglen footballers. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Joy for the Araglen footballers. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Kearney was indeed a scorer in chief for Araglen throughout. While players such as Paul Hynes and Ben Carey were also to illustrate their scoring abilities at different stages of the contest.

Twomey added on what has been a great campaign for the club as a whole:

“We won the Junior B Hurling, which was a carryover from 2020, we won that. I suppose we were underdogs coming into that game. So we had to go out and play Junior A Hurling this year, so we probably weren’t prepared for that as much as we would want to be.

These young fellas have done a fantastic job for Araglen this year. As the captain James Kearney said out there on the field, we’ve put Araglen back on the map this year. That is all that we wanted to do.” 

So it was a second county title for Araglen this year. This football success caps off what indeed has been a fantastic 2021 for the club. Their U15 hurlers, in the Kilara Óg amalgamation with Kilworth, also captured the Premier 2 title.

When they sit back and relax over the forthcoming festive period, the Araglen players and management can reflect on what has been a fine recent spell for their club.

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