BY BARRY O’MAHONY
CONCHÚIR Ó Loingsigh certainly knows where the back of the net is. The stats don’t lie.
Béal Athán Ghaorthaidh created history at the end of April, claiming the Muskerry U21 B football championship title for the first time since 1982.
The Gaeltacht side defeated Macroom 3-8 to 1-12 in the final.
The scenes on the Cill na Martra pitch after the final whistle had to be seen to be believed, as players, supporters and club officials mingled in the middle of the pitch.
One of their heroes was midfielder and captain Conchúir Ó Loingsigh, who is the winner of the Auld Triangle and Muskerry Sports Star award for April.
And he was prolific during the championship run – he scored 10-17 in the five championship games.
It’s been a fantastic few months for Ó Loingsigh who is also looking forward to a Muskerry derby in the PIFC against Macroom at the end of June.
Ó Loingsigh scored a combined 3-6 in the semi-final against Blarney and Macroom in the decider in April. The six-foot three-inch IT Tralee student led by example and chipped in with decisive scores.
‘It’s a massive honour to collect this award for the club and myself. There were lots of games in April, a lot of standout players. It’s brilliant to top the list. April was a historic month for the club and parish,’ Ó Loingsigh said.
Béal Athán Ghaorthaidh weren’t given much a chance when they made the short journey to Cill na Martra for the final against Macroom, but in typical Béal Athán fashion, grit and heart were key elements in securing the win.
‘It was a massive performance from the lads,’ Ó Loingsigh said.
‘The defence in particular were outstanding. In my opinion, they won us the game. Most of the defence are minor this year, which hopefully bodes well for the future.’
Béal Áthán Ghaorthaidh might not have lined out in the B championship in 2018, as Ó Loingsigh explains.
‘Ourselves and the management team met back in January, we didn’t know whether to play B or C, by the end of the night, we came to the conclusion we would play B. It turned out to be a brilliant decision,’ he explained.
Moving onto the adult team, three weeks ago Ó Loingsigh scored 2-1, including a crucial late penalty for the premier intermediate side, as they beat Newmarket in the Tom Creedon Cup final, 4-15 to 4-14.
‘It was an expansive game of football, really enjoyable to watch, and it was brilliant to win the trophy. After losing to Éire Óg in round one of the championship, it was important to get back on track,’ Ó Loingsigh said.
The Gaeltacht side clash with near neighbours Macroom in a Muskerry derby in the PIFC round two at the end of June, a game Ó Loingsigh is very much looking forward to.
‘That will be a very tough contest. We had a few players out injured recently so hopefully we will be in good shape for that one next month. Macroom have been playing very well in the league over the last few weeks.’