Belfast Trojans Advance To Shamrock Bowl XXVIII, Irish Championship

Trojans defeat University of Limerick Vikings 28 – 6 in Dublin, Ireland this past weekend.

Defending champions Belfast Trojans booked their place in the Shamrock Bowl final for the third consecutive season by defeating the University of Limerick Vikings in what can be described as nothing less than a battle!

Each team came into the game after impressing throughout the regular season, but there was only one goal in mind for these sides; to reach the Bowl game. Everyone knew this match would be a close one, but nobody could predict that it would be decided late in the fourth quarter.

The match was on a knife-edge from the beginning, with both teams coming up with huge defensive stops as the game swung back and forth throughout the first quarter. The Trojans got the first score of the game however, as kicker Rick Duffield converted a field goal to give the Belfast side a marginal 3-0 lead going into the break.

The Vikings started the brightest in the second half and their efforts were rewarded when a play action pass fooled the Trojans defence and receiver, Gavin Duffy reeled in the deep catch to put UL 6-3 up after the failed PAT. With the game entering the fourth quarter, tensions were getting high and neither team was prepared to give up their place in the final.

As the match entered the final quarter, many people felt that this would be the end for the Trojans. However, when champions are up against it; they respond.

In a breathtaking 12 minutes, the Trojans turned the match on its head. First, defensive tackle Patrick McElkerney made arguably the game changing tackle when he sacked the Vikings quarterback and recovered the fumble.

With the resulting drive, receiver David Richardson caught a deep pass from Quarterback, James McKelvey to give the Trojans excellent field position. It was then left to Running Back, Dave Colvin to rush in for a touchdown that would regain the lead for the Belfast men. Rick Duffield kicked the extra point which made the score 10-6. With that, the momentum greatly turned in the Trojans favour as Colvin would add another two touchdowns to his name, including a 50-yard scamper that he would take untouched to the end zone.

As the game entered the final stages, there was still time for Safety, Matt Armstrong to return a ‘Pick 6’ all the way to the house to give the Trojans the victory with a 28-6 score line.

The Vikings fought tooth and nail throughout the four quarters, and the result doesn’t do justice for their efforts on the day. The champions knew they were in for a tough game, and the Vikes made them work hard for the victory. The Trojans will now take on Trinity College in the final as they defeated the Rebels, 47-8 in the other semi final that took place at Westmanstown.

Can the Trojans win their third National Championship?

The Final takes place on August 10th, at Tallaght Stadium, Dublin.

Photo by Bob Given Photography

Scott is an aspiring Sports Journalist who enjoys writing about all things American Football. He is a regular contributor to AFI Review and also writes for both NFL Ireland and Double Coverage, and currently plays for the Belfast Trojans. He also