Sport has always been a central feature of life at De La Salle and continues to provide an avenue to showcase the many talented young people who come through our doors. We curtently compete at all age groups in soccer, Gaelic football and hurling as well as having many top class athletes in cross-country, athletics, boxing, trampolining and judo, to name but a few.
De La Salle is widely recognised for success on the soccer field, having won the Belfast Senior Cup on a record nine occasions, most recently in 2016.
Last year saw both the year 8 and 9 Belfast Cups return to Edenmore Drive. Among our past pupils, Mal Donaghy, Anton Rogan, Philip Mulryne, Brian Close and Dan Devine have all enjoyed successful professional careers in England and Scotland, whilst several Irish League clubs can count at least one former Lasallian in their squads.
Since winning the Markey Cup in 1971, De La Salle has been a formidable force in both Gaelic football and hurling. Whilst the 2006 McLarnon Cup win is obviously the highlight, we continue to compete strongly in both codes. We are the current holders of the Year 11 McAvoy Cup and this squad has qualified for the equivalent year 12 final.
In hurling, we are placed 6th on the all-time list of Ulster College All-Star wins with 33 awards. Many past pupils have represented Antrim at senior level in both codes and the current football squad includes six past pupils. Given the close historical links between the club and the school, it is a source of great pride that St Gall’s All-Ireland winning squad contained ten Lasallians.
We also recognise that, for many pupils, participation is as important as winning. Through our Youth Sport programme, pupils have the opportunity to participate in inter-class leagues and to attend coaching courses in soccer, rugby and basketball, as well as holiday coaching schemes in Gaelic at Halloween and February mid-term.
De La Salle has a long-standing relationship with St Kieran’s College in Kilkenny, allowing students from both schools to participate in biannual sporting and cultural exchange trips.
Sport and sporting success will continue to play a key role in the development of the young people at De La Salle, and it is no sur- prise that many of these students go on to achieve continued sporting and academic success long after they leave the college.