Kerry’s Heroes and Achievers Honoured by Council

St. Mary's Ladies return with NICC Cup Title 28-1-2018
Honoured: The 2018 victorious St. Mary’s Basketball Club NICC Cup winners pictured on their triumphant return to Castleisland on the Sunday evening of their great win. Front from left: Labhaoise Walmsley, Eileen O’Connor, Denise Dunlea, MVP award winner; Captain Aoife Nolan and Nicole Downey. Back from left: Ciara Ryan, Rachel Ryan, Coach Liam Culloty, Katie Reidy, Lorraine Scanlon, top scorer; Mary Herlihy, Sarah O’Sullivan and Orla White.  ©Photograph: John Reidy 28-1-2018.
Cllr. Bobby O’Connell proposed that the Castleisland team be honoured for its achievements in 2018. ©Photograph: John Reidy

The county’s heroes and achievers were honoured by Kerry County Council at a gala awards ceremony at the Rose Hotel in Tralee on Thursday night.

A total of 25 awards were presented to groups and individuals at the county council and municipal district awards event for 2018 and the St. Mary’s Basketball Club team  which won the National Intermediate Cup Competition (NICC) this time last year, was among the honoured.

Significant Contributions

Presentations were made to a range of community, sporting, cultural, voluntary and enterprising individuals and groups who have made a significant contribution to their communities and who have excelled in their respective fields, many on the national and international stage.

Immense Talent

“As elected councillors, we are all intimately aware of and familiar with the immense talent and ability of the many individuals and groups in our county – each of whom excel as volunteers, as members of a sports team, as innovators, as performers, as organisers, as facilitators, and as dedicated community workers across the county,” said Cllr. Norma Foley in welcoming the attendance at the ceremony.

A Showcase of Achievements

“The wide range of recipients here tonight is reflective of a wide diversity of sectors and reflects the strengths of our great county. From festivals and community events, to sporting successes and music and dancing performers, tonight is a showcase of the many achievements of so many people in our wonderful county,” Cllr. Foley said.

St. Mary’s Senior Ladies Basketball Team Castleisland

The citation for the award to St. Mary’s read as follows:

The award for the St Mary’s Senior Ladies Basketball team from Castleisland was proposed by Cllr Bobby O’Connell.

Since their All Ireland Club win in 2004, St. Mary’s have enjoyed success at local and national level.

NICC Competition Winners

Both the men’s and women’s teams have won several Southern Conference titles. In 2018 it was the turn of the senior ladies.

The NICC competition is the biggest weekend of the year in the basketball calendar and St. Mary’s senior ladies were at the centre of it.

Under the guidance of coach Liam Culloty and captained by Aoife Nolan, the team faced Killester in the NICC final in the National Basketball arena on Sunday January 28th – almost a year ago to the day.

Superb Achievement

A huge crowd travelled to support the girls but neither the hype of the event nor the cheers of the crowds affected the St. Mary’s ladies who took it all in their stride and remained focused for the full 40 minutes of a game which they dominated from start to finish.

The final score was Killester 54, St. Mary’s 71. It was a really superb achievement for the club and for everyone involved from players to management and family to friends.

Well done to a wonderful team.

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