Newry lads must rise to occasion and sink St Mary’s
The draws for the quarter-finals of the MacRory and MacLarnon Cups were made in Belfast yesterday and as usual they threw up some intriguing ties.
The MacRory Cup is the blue ribbon event in Colleges football and it’s widely regarded that this is one of the most open competitions in years.
St.Colman’s Newry have not only won the last two titles but on both occasions have gone all the way to All-Ireland Hogan Cup glory as well and they will start as favourites against last season’s MacLarnon Cup champions St. Mary’s Belfast.
The Down lads just about scraped through from their group while St.Mary’s had an eye-catching play-off win over St. Mary’s Magherafelt so it’s a game that could go either way.
Omagh CBS won the MacCormack Cup last month and they have been paired against the side that they beat in that final, St. Michael’s Enniskillen, in what is the tie of the quarter-finals.
The Tyrone lads last went all the way in 2007 and they will be fancied to reach the last four.
St.Patrick’s Academy Dungannon were champions in both 2008 and 2009 and were runners-up last season and they have been handed a difficult tie against neighbours St. Pats Armagh.
The Academy weren’t that impressive in league matches but they have a habit of getting it right when it matters most and while Armagh beat them a few weeks ago it may be a different story when the teams lock horns at the beginning of February.
BT MacRory Cup quarter-finals: St Patrick’s Dungannon v St Patrick’s Armagh; St Patrick’s Maghera v Abbey CBS; St Michael’s Enniskillen v Omagh CBS; St Colman’s Newry v St Mary’s Belfast.
BT MacLarnon Cup quarter-finals: St Columb’s Derry v St Patrick’s Cavan; Holy Cross College Strabane v St Patrick’s Downpatrick; St Paul’s Bessbrook v Patrician High Carrickmacross; Our Lady’s Castleblayney v St Louis Ballymena.