Trinity College Dublin Earns First Trip to the Irish Championship, Shamrock Bowl XXVIII

Trinity College Dublin whips crosstown foes Dublin Rebels 47 – 8

With Trinity College and the Dublin Rebels kicking off the second semi-final, both sides knew that a win would book them a place in the Shamrock Bowl final against the reigning champions, the Belfast Trojans. The Rebels playing in yet another semi-final, hoped that a victory would give them the opportunity to potentially claim their 8th National Championship, whilst Trinity College had their heart set on making their first ever Shamrock Bowl appearance.

This game was predicted to be close affair with two of the leagues best running backs, Simon Mackey and Rob McDowell pitting their talents against one another. The hype surrounding these two had been brewing nicely in the weeks leading to the encounter, but only one man would come out victorious.

As early as the opening kickoff, Rob McDowell does what he does best and scored a 100-yard return to give Trinity College an early 6-0 lead. From then on, it was one-way traffic. After recovering a fumble, Trinity extended their lead when McDowell rushed in again to give the students a 13-0 lead as the first quarter ended.

The second quarter started similar to the first, as McDowell again ran in from 4 yards to increase Trinity’s lead as the Rebels were still struggling to get a foothold in the game. It began to get worse for 7 time champions, as another fumble was recovered and taken to the house by David Lunn for a defensive touchdown. Rob McDowell added his fourth touchdown of the game soon after, this time with a 90 yard return before Quarterback, Dan Finnamore found receiver Daniel Murphy in the end zone for a 35 yard passing reception to give Trinity a commanding 41-0 lead at half time.

With the game getting away from them, The Rebels knew their second half performance needed to be something special. They managed to get on the score sheet when QB Andrew Dennehy passed to Chris Purdy who ran the remaining 20-yards for the touchdown, with Peter Keeley adding the extra 2 points. Any hope of a miraculous comeback by the Rebels was well and truly diminished when a further score by Ola Bademosi completed the touchdown overhaul for the students. Connor McGinn kicked 5 PAT’s throughout the game to give Trinity an emphatic 47-8 over the Rebels.

The Rebels have had an impressive year after making it to yet another Shamrock Bowl semi final. By defeating the Knights in the wildcard round, and playing an exhibition game against American side, Centre College, the Rebels have done themselves proud for their efforts this year. Expect them to be challenging among the elite teams again next term. Meanwhile, Trinity will now take part in their first ever Bowl appearance, when they take on The Belfast Trojans on August 10th. Trinity prevailed in the last meeting between these sides, but expect a fantastic game between the leagues best two teams this year. The final takes place at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin.

Photo by Bob Givens 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