CREDIT UNIONS SENIOR FOOTBALL LEAGUE FINAL.
Ballybay v Scotstown: Gavan Duffy Park; Monaghan: Sunday November 26th @ 2.00pm.
Barring the need for a replay, the competitions year in Monaghan will come to a close on Sunday when Ballybay and Scotstown meet in the final of the Credit Unions sponsored senior football league. Victory for Scotstown would see them completing the senior double of league and championship and re-gaining the league title they last won in 2015 when they defeated Truagh in the final. Meanwhile victory for Ballybay would see them retaining the senior football league title they won last year, when they defeated Castleblayney in the final in Emyvale, but victory on Sunday would also see them taking some silverware in a year that so far promised much but delivered little as they went out of the senior football championship after a replayed semi-final against Sunday's opposition.
The GAA in Monaghan has suffered 3 sad bereavements in the past week with the deaths of Jim Joe Brady, Scotstown, in New York, Pat Macken of Castleblaynay and most recently the sudden death of Scotstown's Liam Starrett on Tuesday morning last and the passing of all 3 severs strong links with their respective clubs and in Liam Starrett's case in particular with the GAA at county and national level.
THE LATE JIM JOE BRADY (Scotstown & New York).
There was great sadness last week when it was learned that Jim Joe Brady had passed to his eternal reward in New York and with his passing Scotstown has lost something of an iconic figure, as he had served the Scotstown cause for over a decade and had also represented Monaghan with distinction. Jim Joe Brady played in goals for Scotstown when they reached the final of the senior football championship in 1964 only to lose to Castleblayney but he had moved to full back for the 1966 final, although defeat was again their lot. Clontibret defeated Scotstown in the 1968 final with Jim Joe Brady at full back again but he was back between the posts to win his 1st senior championship medal in 1974 when they defeated Castleblayney in the final. The met Castleblayney in the final the following year, 1975, with Jim Joe Brady again in goals but the Faughs were victorious on that occasion. In those years he also won senior league medals in 1968, 1970 and 1972. At county level he played in goals against Fermanagh in the Ulster senior football championship in 1965 and held down a corner back position against Down in the Ulster championship in 1969 but was back in goals for the 1973 game against Derry, although Monaghan were out of luck in the Ulster championship in those years. Jim Joe Brady then emigrated to New York where he continued to play a part but never forgot his Scotstown roots and was back there on a visit relatively recently. Jim Joe Brady's mortal remains will be cremated in New York but his ashes will be brought back to his native Scotstown. Ar dheis De go raibh a anam.
THE LATE PAT MACKEN (Castleblayney).
The news of the death of Pat Macken, Castleblaynay, last weekend following a long battle with cancer evoked a sense of sadness and a great sense of loss particularly to his wife and family but also to the wider GAA community in Castleblayney where Pat had achieved almost iconic status over the years. Going back to the time when Castleblayney were a very dominant team in Monaghan, Pat Macken established himself as a regular wing half back and played in two County finals when he won a senior championship medal in 1976 but was also on the team that lost to Scotstown in the 1979 final. Following his playing days Pat then got involved in administration in the Castleblayney club and was their regular County board delegate for many years. He was also a very dedicated worker as the grounds man at St Mary's Park where his meticulous attention to detail always had everything in shipshape condition when Castleblayney were staging matches and in that role he passed on a very strong legacy to those who succeeded him. Following Requiem Mass on Mondaymorning last Pat's remains were interred in St Mary Cemetery. Ar dheis De go raibh a anam.
THE LATE LIAM STIRRAT (Scotstown).
There was a deep sense of shock and almost disbelief when news of the sudden death of Liam Stirrat, Scotstown, broke on Tuesday morning last and with his passing his family has lost a beloved husband, father and grandfather and the GAA in Scotstown and Monaghan has lost one of its most famous sons as he served both club and County with distinction in a variety of roles and always bringing a great sense of honour to every position that he held. As a player he represented Scotstown and Monaghan at minor, U21 and senior level, was a member of the Scotstown panel that was defeated in the 1966 senior championship final by Castleblayney and played against Clontibret in the 1968 County final, before winning his 1st senior championship medal in 1974 when Scotstown defeated Castleblayney in the County final. He was on the team that reached the County final in 1975 but moving into the late 70s he had then turned his attention to team management as he guided Scotstown to 3 Ulster club Championships in a row in 1978, when the defeated St Johns of Antrim, 1979 when they defeated Carrickcruppen of Armagh and 1980 when they defeated St Johns for the 2nd time, and was in charge in the year they reached the All Ireland club final. At County level he also served as a selector and team manager and after his involvement on the playing side had finished he got involved in administration serving as vice chairman of the County board from 1993 to 1997, as chairman from 1998 to 2000, as assistant treasurer from 2001 to 2003 and as treasurer in 2004. He also represented Monaghan on Central Council from 2007 to 2011, making for a very substantial contribution to the Association for most of his life.
SCOR NA nOG.
The County final of the Acorn Life sponsored Scór na nÓg is being held in Threemilehouse this Saturday, 25th November starting at 7pm with Competitions in Rince Foirne, Rince Seit, Solo Singing, Ballad Singing, Recitation, Group Music, Drama. The Scór na nÓg Ulster semi final for the Monaghan winners will be on Sunday 10th December with the Ulster Final on January 13th2018. As well As the trophies for the winners there are also 2 other prizes on offer that recognise excellence in the competition; the Peggy Mc Quaid Shield which is currently held by Drumhowan is awarded each year to the Ceili Dancing winners and there is also a Shield for An Club is Fearr, the most successful club on the night, both much prized awards.