This was an interesting year for the Jarlath’s senior team, who unfortunately couldn’t convert dogged determination into overall victory. After a tense, high scoring semi-final replay against St. Gerald’s (which ended in a closely won 4-7 to Gerald’s’ 1-14), the team squared up against a revved up Muredach’s of Ballina. Muredach’s started impressively and coupled with some strong defending it took a lot of sheer tenacity for the Jarlath’s lads to come level just before halftime. After the break, Muredach’s pulled ahead but were put in check after a pointed free by Gearoid Armstrong and a plucky goal by Niall Quinn. However, Muredach’s, aided in no small part by a lucky goal that somehow found its way from the post to the back of the net, managed to pull ahead towards the end. Despite another Armstrong free conversion however, the sending off of a Muredach’s player and further flaring tempers caused the referee to blow the final whistle early, leaving an unlucky Jarlath’s side 1-8 to 2-8 down. It was a disappointing year for senior football, but with strong Junior and Juvenile players coming up through the ranks this year, the future looks indeed looks bright.
On the 15th of March 2010, Leaving Cert and Fourth Year students participated in a sponsored 8km walk to raise funds for the charity Bothar. Leaving Cert students accompanied by Mr Pat Carrick (Fundraising Projects’ Director with Bothar) and Ms Noelle Moran made an 8 mile trek through Tuam into Sylane to visit both the Clais an Aifrean and Sylane NS; They were helped along by sponsored refreshments from Quin’s Shop, a giant metal cow on loan from Earwig and cups of tea with sandwiches from parents and well-wishers. Burkes’ bus then shipped out the fourth years who took over for the 8km walk back. All in all, over €6000 was raised for Bothar to send animals over to impoverished countries. It’s a noble charity which endeavours to practically improve things for people living in the third world, and Jarlath’s seniors were very happy to do all they could.
Another group of Jarlath’s students recently completed the Gaisce scheme this year, receiving the President’s Award for completing 13 weeks each of Community, Sports and a chosen Personal skill. They participated in activities to improve each skill for an hour a week during each individual run, along with an Outdoor Adventure Challenge. The recipients (fourth years Josh Allen, Thomas Cummins, Dean Flynn, David Kilgarriff, Ben O’Riordan, Shane Broderick, Ervin Jan Solier, Peter Higgins and Liam Moran) spent the 23rd and 24th of April on an orienteering excursion to Killary, braving bog hills, hidden sink holes and even a rickety bridge for their medals. This is just the latest group from Jarlath’s to gain this award, with teachers Fiona O’Sullivan, Cliona Feerick, Andrew Marsden and caretaker Frances Stockwell giving up their free time to help organise the lads in their efforts.
The first Opera in the amalgamated school was the Broadway classic Westside Story, a tale based on the classic story of Romeo and Juliet exploring the tensions between the Jets and the Sharks, two rival gangs of differing ethnic and cultural backgrounds. It starred Stuart Barrows as Tony and Mercy girl Danielle Carroll as Maria, and was directed by past pupil Ronan Lardner, with musical direction by the young powerhouse Shane Farrell.
Following on from last year’s success, St. Jarlath’s once again fielded four teams into the west/midlands section of the IAMTA (Irish Applied Maths Teachers Association) competition hosted by NUIG in March of this year. After winning last year’s competition, expectations were high for all involved, but unfortunately the furthest reached was by the team of Shane Ryan, Ross Loughlin and Liam Moran, who finished third after a tense tie-breaker. However, the performances of all Jarlath’s boys were very respectable, and with so many younger students involved in the competition, we can only look on to next year.