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UCD dig deep to end 20-year wait for Sigerson Cup

Posted: Monday, February 22 

  • UCD beats DCU to claim 33rd intervarsity Gaelic football title
  • Captain Jack McCaffrey pays tribute to late UCD coach Dave Billings

UCD has beaten Dublin City University to claim its first Sigerson Cup title in 20 years.

The Belfield outfit won its first GAA intervarsity Gaelic football title since 1996 with a 0-10 to 2-02 win over title holders DCU in wet and windy conditions at the University of Ulster campus in Jordanstown, Co Antrim.  

UCD had to overcome the loss of Dublin intercounty star Paul Mannion with a leg injury early on, as well as Player of the Year and Dublin’s Jack McCaffrey with a hamstring near the end of normal time.

Having dominated the game for most of the first half, UCD found themselves a point behind at half time 1-2 to 0-4, after Steven O’Brien scored a goal for DCU in the 30th minute.

Pictured top: The UCD team after they received the Sigerson Cup 2016, at the University of Ulster Jordanstown campus, Co Antrim, where they beat Dublin City University in the final, along with Annette Billings, wife of the late Dave Billings, former UCD GAA coach, who passed away last year. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile

UCD re-asserted their authority in the third quarter with four unanswered points. Man of the match and Westmeath forward John Heslin scored three frees and Monaghan’s Conor McCarthy scored his second point, to make it 0-8 to 1-2 after 43 minutes.

DCU failed to get a foothold in the game in the second half, but they got a penalty against the run of play in the 52nd minute. Conor Moynagh put the ball in the back of the net to draw the match level at 2-2 to 0-8.

But Heslin continued his brilliant display, scoring his sixth point in the 56th minute, and Mayo’s Stephen Coen pointed in injury time to secure the hard-fought victory.

UCD’s win was an emotional one due to the passing last year of its long-serving and much-loved GAA officer Dave Billings.

UCD captain Jack McCaffrey paid tribute to Dave Billings as he accepted the Sigerson Cup from GAA President Aogan Farrell.

“We didn't use the memory of Dave as motivation at any one point during the year, but he was kind of with us all the way. He always preached about how the Sigerson Cup was about the friendships we'd make, but winning this isn't half bad either,” he said. 

  • Jack McCaffrey is a fourth-year Medicine student and Ad Astra Elite Athlete Scholar
  • Conor McCarthy is a first-year Science student and Ad Astra Elite Athlete Scholar
  • Stephen Coen is a second-year Agricultural Science student and Ad Astra Elite Athlete Scholar
  • Paul Mannion is a fourth-year Bcomm International student and UCD Sports Scholar
  • John Heslin is a second-year student of a research PhD in Agricultural Science

By: (opens in a new window)Jamie Deasy, digital journalist, UCD University Relations

Scorers for UCD – J Heslin 0-6 (4f), C McCarthy 0-2, P Mannion 0-1 (f), S Coen 0-1

Scorers for DCU – S O'Brien 1-0, C Moynagh 1-0 (pen), S Carey 0-1 (f), S Attride 0-1

UCD: E Keogh (Laois); R Wylie (Monaghan), D Hyland (Kildare), D Byrne (Dublin), C Mullaly (Dublin), M Fitzsimons (Dublin), J McCaffrey (Dublin); L Casey (Tipperary), R McDaid (Dublin); C McCarthy (Monaghan), J Heslin (Westmeath), C Basquel (Dublin); E Lowry (Laois), P Mannion (Dublin), N Kelly (Kildare) – Subs: T Hayes (Cavan) for Mannion (17), J McEntee (Meath) for Kelly (BC, 29), S Coen (Mayo) for McEntee (43), J Barry (Kerry) for Lowry (53), S O'Dea (Limerick) for McCaffrey (57), T Moolick for Casey (58)

DCU: P O'Donnell (Donegal); K Daly (Westmeath), K Feeley (Kildare), J Smith (Dublin); S Attride (Laois), C Moynagh (Cavan), D Byrne (Dublin); S O'Brien (Tipperary), M Quinn (Longford); D O'Connor (Mayo), E Smith (Roscommon), C Begley (Laois); R Connor (Longford), R Lyons (Fermanagh), S Carey (Monaghan) – Subs: S Carthy (Dublin) for Quinn (HT), C McGraynor (Wicklow) for Connor (HT),

D Ward (Monaghan) for Daly (44), C McHugh (Dublin) for Carey (47), C Breheny (Sligo) for Lyons (47), C McNally (Armagh) for Smith (59)

REFEREE: David Coldrick (Meath)

Captain Jack McCaffrey had this to say after the win:

On Facebook...

Dave would have enjoyed today immensely. #BillingsArmy #Sigerson2016

Posted by (opens in a new window)Official Dublin GAA on  (opens in a new window)Saturday, 20 February 2016

Captain Jack McCaffrey accepts the trophy!

Posted by UCD GAA on Saturday, 20 February 2016

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