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In The Irish News - Aug 24 1997: St Gall's win Irish News Ulster minor seven-a-side hurling title

CUP JOY...The St Gall’s team celebrate capturing the Irish News Cup at the St John’s Sevens hurling tournament at Corrigan Park on Saturday

ST GALL'S won the Irish News-sponsored Ulster minor seven-a-side hurling blitz on Saturday, triumphing 2-3 to 1-3 after being pushed all the way by a talented Keady team in the final.

St Gall’s captain Johnny Flynn picked up The Irish News Cup on behalf of his team.

St Gall’s also received the sportsmanship award, selected by the tournament referees. Keady’s Conor Breen deservedly collected the man of the tournament award. St Gall’s had edged past Lavey in the semi-finals with a 0-5 to 0-4 victory.

The other semi-final was a thriller, Keady overcoming Loughgiel 2-5 to 1-5 after extra time.

The tournament was a big success with 16 teams from all over Ulster producing some outstanding hurling in an event in which sportsmanship was to the fore.

The early stages of the tournament saw the 16 teams divided into groups of four, the top two in each group progressing to the quarterfinals while the bottom two competed in the new plate event which was introduced this year for the first time. Sarsfields beat St John’s 2-2 to 1-2 in the final of the plate.

The tournament was played at Corrigan Park, St Gall’s, and St Mary’s Grammar Schoo

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A POINT deep into injury time from Loughgiel's Claire McGarry denied Keady a spot in next month’s Ulster camogie club final after an excellent semi-final in Fr Healy Park yesterday.

It was Claire’s sixth point and her first from play in one of her best performances in the championship as Loughgiel Shamrocks edged out Keady 2-12 to 3-8.

But the real reason Loughgiel progressed was the second-half display by their defence.

Mary Connolly was in brilliant form, Ciara McGarry cut out the threat posed early in the tie by Deirdre Connolly, while Grace McMullan caused a lot of problems for Keady’s defence. The superb free-taking of Claire McGarry turned the game in the second half and covered for some glaring misses by the forwards.

As the game slipped into injury time, Colleen Conway sent over an equaliser only for Claire McGarry to deny her with that late point.

Loughgiel 2-12: Rosie Watson 1-2, Grace McMullan 1-1, Claire McGarry 0-6, Caitriona Higgins 0-2, Ursula Culbertson 0-1

Keady 3-8: Collette Conway 1-3, Colleen Conway 1-3, Helen Mone 1-0, Deirdre Connolly 0-2

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MICHELLE de Bruin was left cursing an amateur error that could have cost her a third gold medal as the European Championships came to a close in Seville. De Bruin finished second in the 200 metres butterfly behind home favourite Maria Pelaez by just six- tenths of a second and the Spaniard was roared home by a capacity crowd.

It was the 27-year-old Irish swimmer’s second silver of the championships but it could well have been gold if not for a farcical mistake which left Spain celebrating its first women’s European gold medal.

De Bruin explained: “I seem to be jinxed in this event. “I was waiting for the 1500 metres freestyle final and then realised my race was next. “I don’t want to make excuses but I did not have my swimsuit or my goggles on and had to be ready in two minutes flat. “I found my hat and goggles and just ran.

“I was not very happy or relaxed when I lined up although I thought my pace for the first 100 metres was fine.”

Palaez won in a time of 2:10.25 with De Bruin second in 2:10.88 and 100m champion Mette Jacobsen of Denmark taking the bronze in 2:11.97.

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