Cross and Passion College has a great tradition of hurling and draws pupils from all of the hurling clubs in North Antrim. CPC enters teams in all Ulster Colleges ‘A’ hurling competitions as follows;
Year 8 – Thompson Cup
Year 9 – McNamee Cup
Year 10 – Gallagher Cup
Year 11 – Year 11 Knockout
Year 12 – Forresters Cup
Year 13&14 – Mageean Cup
There are a number of teachers who generously give of their time to coach the school teams, including; Mr Cassidy, Mr Kearney, Mr Campbell and Mr Herron.
Hurling has flourished in CPC over the last number of years and we are one of the top hurling colleges in Ulster. This year, CPC were once again crowned All-Ireland Champions when the senior team won the Buggy Cup against Mountrath C.S. from County Laois. This followed on from back to back All-Ireland Titles in 2009 & 2010. This year's final was played in Thurles and the boys produced a fantastic performance to end a magnificant Year for them since winning the Mageean Cup back in October. This was the second Year in a row we have won the Mageean Cup - a fantastic achievement. Our Year 10's also became Ulster Champions this year when they won the Gallagher Cup. Last year was another successful year for the school winning the Mageean Cup, McNamee Cup and the Thompson Cup.
Hurling in CPC has a bright future due to the dedication of the pupils and teachers involved and the continuing support from local clubs.
Information on Cross and Passion’s fixtures and results can be viewed on the Ulster Colleges website by clicking on the following link.
Cross and Passion Win All-Ireland Buggy Cup
Cross and Passion 1-16
Mountrath CS 1-12
Saturday 4th April will live long in the memory of all those who were in Semple Stadium, Thurles to witness a magnificent display of team spirit and hurling skill as our senior hurlers deservedly secured the All-Ireland Colleges Buggy Cup.
A huge crowd from Cross and Passion and the clubs of North Antrim made the journey to Thurles and added their voice to a great occasion that excited and entertained right until the final whistle.
On the field of play CPC were tuned in right from the off and looked like a team who meant business. Mountrath had the better of the opening scoring exchanges though and lead 0-4 to 0-2 after 11 minutes. However, during the next ten minutes CPC built the platform from which they would go on to win the game. Points from Shea Hunter, Johnny McErlain, Alex O'Boyle and a two frees from Cormac McClafferty coupled with TT Butler getting on top at midfield and the defence tightening up had CPC 2 points up after 20 minutes. Mountrath responded in determined fashion but further points from McClafferty and Shan McGrath gave CPC a 0-9 to 0-8 interval lead.
The start of the second half was tight and tense with the scores level at 0-10 apiece and again at 0-11 before CPC turned the screw during a 10 minute period of brilliance which effectively won the game. Firstly Diarmaid McShane burst into life with 2 magnificent points and this was followed by scores from TT Butler and Shan McGrath. The decisive moment came in the 55th minute when Shan McGrath flicked a high ball to the Mountrath net to open up a 6 point gap. Shan struck for a point a minute later and with a 7 point lead the title was destined for CPC. There was still a sting in the tail of Mountrath however, as they battled bravely to the end and stuck for a late goal but the CPC defence lead by Sean Mc Bride and OD Laverty held firm and the final whistle brought joyous scenes as the team, managers and supported celebrated a famous victory.
The dedication and commitment shown by this panel of players since their Mageean Cup victory in October has to be admired and commended. After a winter conditioning programme they have upped the training and match practice since Christmas and a recent trip to St. Kieran's College, Kilkenny, cemented their progress. Huge credit must go to the management team of Mr Cassidy, Mr Kearney, Eddie McCloskey and Joe Smyth who have guided and inspired this group of young men to All-Ireland glory.
No doubt this victory will inspire the younger hurlers in CPC and the fantastic hurling legacy in the school will continue into the future.
Back to Back Mageean Titles for CPC
Congratulations to our Senior hurlers who retained the Mageean Cup in a dramatic final against ‘An Dún’ – a combination of the Down schools. The game was played on Friday 24th October at the Dub Arena pitch in Belfast and proved to be a tight and tense affair. CPC eventually prevailed by one point on a scoreline of 2-12 to 0-17 and put back to back Mageean titles together.
The match itself was one of the closest and most fiercely contested finals in recent years. CPC made a blistering start with Shan McGrath firing the ball to the net after just 2 minutes for the opening score of the game. However it was An Dún who went on to dominate the exchanges in the first half and went in leading at half time by 0-10 to 1-4. Another CPC goal at the start of the second half from Shea Hunter proved to be the decisive sore of the game. Cormac McClafferty’s accuracy from frees and a couple of points from play by Shan McGrath and Diarmaid McShane had CPC in a commanding 4 point lead half way through the second half. But the Down boys weren’t prepared to throw in the towel and responded with 5 unanswered points to take the lead going into the final stages. The final minutes were nerve wrecking for the supporters of both sides but CPC dug deep and a free from Cormac McClafferty and point from play by Alex O’Boyle were enough to secure a one point win and sparked jubilant scenes at the final whistle.
Huge credit must go to both sets of players for a magnificent display of hurling. Winning 2 Mageean Cups in a row is a fantastic achievement and is testament to the hard work and dedication of the players and coaches, Mr Cassidy, Mr Kearney, Mr Smith and Eddie McCloskey.
CPC Capture Gallagher Cup for First Time Since 2007
St. Killian's 3-2
Congratulations to our Year 10 hurlers who won the Gallagher Cup on Thursday 28th May in Cushendun. This is the first time we have won this competition since 2007. The same group of players won the McNamee Cup last year and have a bright future ahead of them in Ulster Colleges hurling.
In the game itself it was St. Killian's who got off to the better start, scoring 3 goals in the first 10 minutes. However, once CPC settled down and began to hurl they soon got to grips with the St. Killian's challenge. Conor McBride top scored with 2-2 and Oisin McAuley had a fantastic game, scoring 1-1, the point being a massive effort from inside his own half. Michael McGarry scored 4 points and Ryan Hill and Paul Boyle also chipped in with scores to seal a great win for CPC.
Well done to all involved in the panel and to coaches Mr McGoldrick and Mr Cassidy.
All Ireland Glory for CPC Hurlers!! (April 09)
Saturday 4th April 2009 will live long in the memory of all who travelled to Pair Esler in Newry to support the hurlers of Cross and Passion. For the first time in its long history CPC secured an All-Ireland Colleges hurling title after an enthralling encounter that had just about everything. The CPC hurlers played with such intensity and hunger that their Dublin opponents, Colaiste Eoin, were afforded no time on the ball and, despite going 3 points down and having a man sent off within the first ten minutes, it became obvious that the O’Keefe cup was heading to Ballycastle.
A huge crowd turned out for both teams and created an atmosphere befitting the occasion. The game sparked into life before the ball was even thrown in, with tempers flaring in the middle of the field. Indeed, it was to be indiscipline that cost CPC in the opening ten minutes. 3 frees were needlessly conceded and these were dispatched over the bar by the Colaiste Eoin free taker. However, CPC then settled into their rhythm and played some excellent hurling, outscoring their opponents 2-6 to no score in the remainder of the opening half. Shane Jennings fired over 2 long range scores from the right wing and Stephen McAfee and Ciaran Clarke also raised the white flag.
Goals, as ever, proved to be the difference and with 7 minutes remaining in the first half Matthew Donnelly drove a free from over 100 meters which ended up in the net. Minutes later Clarke pounced on a breaking ball to score a second CPC goal. The half finished with Donnelly sending another huge free over the bar to give CPC a nine point interval lead.
Playing against the wind in the second half, and with only 14 men, CPC knew they still had a long way to go. It would require another 30 minutes of serious endeavour to get their hands on the O’Keefe Cup. They didn’t disappoint. They added to their lead with pointed frees from Clarke and the work rate of players like Conor Laverty, Sean Birt and inspirational full back Matthew Donnelly, coupled with Clarke’s accuracy up front, meant that Colaiste Eoin never really got into their stride.
The crucial score in the second half came when Clarke skilfully beat his man and finished expertly to the back of the net. This took the heart out of the Dublin side and despite scoring a late goal and 2 points they were well beaten on a scoreline of 3-12 to 1-10.
There were joyous scenes at the final whistle as the CPC supporters poured on to the pitch to congratulate the players and see Conor Laverty accept the O’Keefe Cup. The players involved in this CPC team deserve the highest of praise for the way they have represented their school, their families and their clubs. Their performance exuded character, courage and no little skill. Great credit must also go to the coaches, Mr Cassidy and Mr Kearney, who have worked tirelessly with this team since September. Their dedication and enthusiasm rubbed off on the players who all stepped up to the plate and delivered when it really mattered – the trademark of great sportsmen.