Rocks ready for run to Verrazzano

  • State Cup begins on busy weekend
  • Rocks ready for Kickers & Harps
  • First team welcome Long Island’s Polet
  • Tough first round challenge for reserves
  • Over 30s travel to Oceanside
  • Historic first Over 40s cup game for Shamrocks

STATE CUP SCHEDULE - 2018_19It’s State Cup fever this weekend for the Shamrocks with all seven teams embarking on what will hopefully be successful runs towards the Verrazzano Soccer Complex finals next June.

That was where just over a year ago, the Shamrocks Women’s team won a famous penalty shoot out against Rovers to secure their first ever Ann Rapaglia Cup and on Sunday the newly renamed Shamrocks Green will take on Manhattan Kickers at East 6th St (kick-off, 3pm) while Shamrocks White host Harps at St Michaels at 11am.

“Manhattan Kickers are a bit unknown to us,” said coach Paddy Geraghty whose team is unbeaten this season after four league encounters.

“But we’ll treat this game like any other and be ready to go. Our squad is getting better and everyone is contributing so we expect to keep the high level we’ve started the season with.”

When the Shamrocks Women first entered the league in 2014, we had the Harps women’s soccer club to thank for giving us the core of our new team.

Since then, the Harps themselves have been added to the New York Metropolitan Women’s Soccer League and on Sunday, they will face Shamrocks White in a first ever Irish Derby for women’s soccer.

“This is a game we shouldn’t take lightly.,” said coach Keith Perez. “We have been improving every game and I hope that our hard work will result in a win on Sunday.”

Meanwhile in the Manning Cup for men’s first teams, the Shamrocks will look to build on a solid win at Hoboken when they host NY Polet at Randalls Island 75 at 4pm on Sunday.

“Long Island teams have great tradition and some excellent players,” said Kevin Grogan. “We look forward to the challenge this weekend in what will be a tough game.

“Winning is a habit so we always try to win as many games as possible. One game at a time has always been our mentality.”

Up after the first team will be the reserves taking on their counterparts at CPR White at 6pm, also at Randalls 75.

“This will be a tough game against a young team who were runners up a year ago,” said Dan Meola.

“Last season, we lost to CPR on penalties in the league semi-final after a grueling 90 minutes. Hopefully, this time around, we won’t leave it up to the chance of a shootout. The lads are buzzing for this one and so am I. A very good test for us as a unit.”

There will be one Saturday game for the club with Shamrocks 1960 facing newly formed Laberia FC at Randalls 74 in the Strumpf Cup (kick-off 6pm).

“It’s always fun to play knockout tournaments,” said Robbie O’Neill. “We’ve a strong side and have high hopes to have a great run in the cup.”

Former Marth Cup champions, Shamrocks Over 30s will travel to Oceanside United for an 11am kick-off.

“With the draw last week and the return of Bingo to the team this weekend, we are looking forward to the game and to hopefully moving on to the next round,” said Sean Mc Mullan.

Elsewhere, the Shamrocks will launch their first ever Over 40s State Cup game in Brooklyn’s Calvert Vaux Park where the Legends will play SC Gjoa at 4pm.

“This is new territory for us and of course it will be difficult since a half dozen of the squad is ineligible to play,” said coach John Riordan.

“But the decision to enter the Vargas Cup was an easy one. It is an absolute honor to be able to coach this team in what will be a unique first. If we get through Sunday, missing so many players, then we have a very good chance of making a run. Above all, we’ll aim to go out and enjoy the occasion!”

Important wins for firsts & reserves


Kurt Cameron scored twice to help the Shamrocks first team get back to winning ways with a solid 3-1 result at Hoboken on Sunday afternoon.

A much improved performance had the visiting team ahead 3-0 by half-time even though Kevin Grogan’s squad was missing several key players.

Yannick Diese set up the first for Cameron who shot with his left to the far bottom corner. Cameron turned provider for the second, finding strike partner Kwesi Mills-Odoi who rifled a perfect shot to the top corner. Then Mills-Odoi returned the favor, battling with the defender on a long ball before managing to touch it into Cameron who was able to take a few touches into the box before scoring to the far corner.

“Very important win,” said Grogan. “Man of the match was Steve Hutchison. Also a big thank you to Nick Meola for filling in in goals. Excellent performance by him. Mike Fernandez made his first team debut and came on and showed some good experience up top. All focus now on our State Cup game against Polet next week.”

Fernandez scored in the opener for the reserves in a 2-0 win which was supplemented by a Paul McDaid strike.

“First and foremost, the win is by far and away the only thing that mattered at the final whistle,” said coach Dan Meola.

“I was proud of the way the lads dug in and secured three important points against a stubborn Hoboken side. Everyone knows the level of quality this side has and today, we were below that level. We will keep improving and look forward to a tough test against CPR in the State Cup.”

Meanwhile in Randall’s Island, the inaugural Shamrocks Legends Family Day was marked by a 3-0 win against Banatul.

0dd4362e-8411-45cb-be36-7901328fb20dMarcus Nascimento had John Riordan’s men deservedly ahead at half-time with a neat finish. Newly signed Paul Bradshaw’s first touch for the team was a brilliant left footed volley early in the second half. And after several missed chances by various players, Cris Silva ended the game as a contest when he rounded the keeper and slotted home his first of the season.

“Great win and a very enjoyable morning,” said Riordan.

“We had a makeshift central defense pairing and they reacted so well. Niall Corbett was man of the match back there and Randall Friedman was brilliant alongside him to help us keep our first clean sheet.

“It was fun to have so many of the kids and better halves join us – a really nice club occasion. Special word of thanks to Emily Kirwan who prepared food and to the committee members Teresa Brink, Tricia and Paddy Geraghty and Kailey Walsh for helping out!

“We have the Over 40 State Cup next weekend which will be our first ever involvement so that will be another nice occasion.”

The Legends win was followed by a goal fest for Shamrocks 1960 who remain top of Metro 2 South after a comprehensive 8-2 win over FC Ulqini.

Top scorer Dan Meola scored twice after dashing from the reserves win in New Jersey to enter the field as a second half sub.

The other goals were scored by Joey Flynn (2), Darragh Coates, Conor Doherty and Kevin Curran.

“Delighted with the win and another strong performance,” said coach Robbie O’Neill who also played in goals.

“Any time you score eight, you have to be happy. We’re on to the State Cup next week and thankfully Eric (Doyle) will be back between the posts!”

The Over 30s tied 1-1 against Manhattan Celtic Legends at Randall’s Island with the club’s top marksman Johnny Mc Geeney scoring once again for the Rocks.

“A very hard fought derby game,” said assistant coach Michael Caterson. “Both teams could have won it so a draw was a fair result. We were missing quite a few today but the three new signings played very well in the second half.”

Meanwhile, in the women’s league, top teams Shamrocks Green and Celtic Aces competed well in a scoreless draw in Bay Ridge.

“It was a great result for us against a very strong Celtic team,” said Paddy Geraghty.

“We were missing a lot of players but again everyone stepped up and showed resolve. Special mention to Caroline Carter and Anna Spangler who shared the shutout in goal and to Elly McGuffog who had a brilliant debut.”

Shamrocks White lost 3-0 to United in the late game.

“It was a tough loss,” said coach Keith Perez. “Injuries left us with only 11 early and we left everything on the field. The scoreline doesn’t indicate the effort. It was our best team performance of the season and we will be looking to build on that next week in the State Cup.”

Rocks bidding to bounce back at Hoboken


The Shamrocks first team will travel to New Jersey to take on CSL Division 1 newcomers Hoboken at Stephen R Gregg Park in Bayonne (kick-off 12pm).

After two defeats in a row, coach Kevin Grogan has laid down a challenge to his players to get the season back on an even keel.

“We all know how big Sunday is for us,” said Grogan. “The players are aware of expectations.”

The reserves will play the curtain raiser at 10am and Dan Meola will be boosted by the fact that he has a full squad to choose from.

“Hoboken aren’t in the top flight just to make up the numbers,” remarked Meola. “They will be tough to break down defensively and will have quality going forward. I’ve said before there will be no easy games in this league. This is our second early trip to New Jersey in the last three weeks but there is no room for excuses. We have a full squad this week and all the quality you could ask for at this level. It’s time to get back to winning ways.”

It will be a busy Sunday at Randalls Island for the other men’s teams. First up at 10am will be the Shamrocks Legends Family Day which will bring players and their families together for the game against Banatul.

Coming off a morale-boosting win against Gjoa, the Legends are further helped by the return of Ger Shivnan and Ryan Thomson while new signing Paul Bradshaw has been added as an exception.

“First and foremost we need a win on Sunday,” said Riordan.

“The league has improved and there is stiffer competition so we need to be focused on every challenge that arises.

“We are also looking to make it a fun family occasion that reflects the overall community spirit of the club. Players make sacrifices to play every Sunday so we wanted to invite their families out to watch before it starts to get cold. Should be a good time!”

Robbie O’Neill’s league leading Shamrocks 1960 will follow up the Legends at the same venue for their Metro 2 clash with FC Ulqini (kick-off 12pm).

albaShamrocks 1960 players Amar Daved and James Horan sporting the Alba sponsored tracksuits during the week at training in Harlem. Photo by John Riordan


“We are looking to continue our great run,” said O’Neill. “We are missing a lot of guys this week. So we’ll have to be on top of our game Sunday.”

Shamrocks Over 30s take on Manhattan Celtic Legends at 4pm and will be aiming to bounce back from their first loss of the season which arrived last Sunday against top side Between Rivers.

The two late games involve the Metropolitan Women’s Soccer League team with Shamrocks Green facing a tough trip to Leif Erickson to take on Celtic Aces (kick-off 6pm).

“We have our toughest game of the season this Sunday,” said Paddy Geraghty.

“Celtic are unbeaten and we are missing several players through injury and travel. But this is why we have a quality squad and we go into the game expecting to get a result.”

An hour later at 6pm, NYC United will be the challenge for Shamrocks White (Randalls Island 70, 7pm).

“We have a real opportunity to pick up points,” said coach Keith Perez. “We have played hard thus far and I am hoping that this hard work pays off with a victory this weekend. I expect a strong performance from the ladies as we look to use this game as a turning point for our season.”

Fourth victory for flawless 1960

  • O’Neill’s charges keep perfect record going
  • Howell hat trick inspires Green
  • Late Nascimento winner lifts Legends

WEEKEND RESULTS - 2018_19Sean Glynn, Amar Daved and Conor Doherty each scored for Shamrocks 1960 on Sunday evening at Randall’s Island to extend the team’s perfect start to their Metro 2 season.

It was yet another shut out for Robbie O’Neill’s men as they eased to a 3-0 win over Beyond FC Metro, bringing their overall goal tally to 17 without concession of a goal.

“I’m very happy with the win against a good side,” said O’Neill.

“I’m delighted with another clean sheet and three points. We’ll be looking to continue the momentum next Sunday against FC Ulqini. It was a brilliant performance from the whole squad.”

Shamrocks Green are also perfect, their 6-0 triumph over NYC United at St Michaels on Sunday morning was their third win of the season.

Mikaela Howell scored a hat trick to bring her season tally to five while there were also goals from Teresa Ferraro-Gosse, Jo Belluardo and Chloe Wheeler.

“I’m very happy with that win today,” said coach Paddy Geraghty.

“We had a couple of injuries that we hope won’t be too serious. Of the 13 goals we’ve scored this season, 10 have come in the second half so it shows our fitness is making a difference.”

The second game of the double header did not go the way of the Rocks as the White team succumbed 3-0 to Celtic Aces

“Another tough loss for the ladies,” said coach Keith Perez. “We are improving game after game but just haven’t had things fall our way. We will look to build on the positives starting at Tuesday training.”

The Shamrocks Legends won a thriller against Gjoa at Dyker Beach Park on Sunday morning, Marcus Nascimento scoring a superb winner in injury time to spark wild celebrations.

Legends goalscorers sept 30
Legends goalscorers Donal ‘Ducky’ Kelly, Justin Stanford and Marcus Nascimento
pictured after helping their team to a 4-3 win on Sunday

The Rocks were 1-0 down in the first half and 3-2 down in the dying minutes but kept battling to secure a second win in a row and an unbeaten start to the season.

Justin Stanford’s clinical finish leveled the game after 30 minutes and Nascimento scored a second half penalty to make it 2-1. But Gjoa then began to enjoy a purple patch and deservedly swung the game to 3-2 in their favor.

The Shamrocks dug deep in the final ten minutes, however, and pressed their hosts. A Cris Silva corner flicked on by Nascimento was headed home from close range by Ducky Kelly who was superb throughout.

And then the introduction of veteran Eoin Sweeney to the Rocks attack completely confused Gjoa, allowing Nascimento space to run on to a John Riordan pass and push the ball past the advancing goalkeeper.

Legends v Gjoa sept 30
The Shamrocks Legends pictured with Gjoa after a well played contest at Dyker Beach Park

“Incredible win,” said Riordan. “We never gave up. We were missing some important players so to come away with all three points is a massive boost for our team spirit.

“The game was played in a very good spirit also. A really good advertisement for the Over 39 Division.”

There was disappointment on Saturday evening for the first team at Randall’s Island where the Greek Americans overcame Kevin Grogan’s men with a deserved 4-1 victory.

It had been a bright start for the Rocks, a well taken Dan Giorgi goal giving the home side a well earned lead after a great assist from Sam Huteson

But the Greeks responded almost immediately with a penalty scored by Charlie Ledula. Pat McCann made it 2-1 after 57 minutes with a great finish and Ledula made it 3-1 five minutes later to effectively end the game as a contest. A fourth was added in injury time.

“The honeymoon period of winning the first two games is definitely over,” said Grogan.

“We now need to regroup and go back to basics. Work ethic is always the foundation then we win the first ball, anticipate the drops, mark, track and tackle, see the danger at the back, make the ball stick up top, movement to create passing lines, move the ball in a quicker more decisive way.

“We must win the battle first in games and then we play. We need to go and get a result against Hoboken who have had a fantastic start to the season. It will be a dog fight. We need to get to bed early and be prepared.

“I’m fed up of people talking about play-offs. What a load of nonsense. We survive first and then see what happens. We need to get into survival mode. The rest will follow. The greats have a survival mechanism ingrained into them. That’s why they are great. This challenge is not for everyone.”

Shamrocks Reserves tied Greek Americans in the curtain raiser, a scoreless result which saw Dan Meola’s men edge it in terms of goal chances.

“This game was a war of attrition,” said Meola. “From minute one, we were behind the eight ball for reasons I’d rather not get into. We were reduced to 10 men after 15 minutes and from then on the lads played one of the most complete games I’ve seen. First to every ball, playing for each other, and working hard to earn a point against the league leaders. I’m honored to coach these lads, especially after games like this.”

Shamrocks Over 30s lost 2-1 to Between Rivers FC with yet another John McGeeney goal being the only bright spot for Sean Mc Mullan’s men.


Hoboken FC 1912 v Shamrocks (Stephen R Gregg Park, 12pm)
Hoboken FC 1912 v Shamrocks (Stephen R Gregg Park, 10am)
Shamrocks 1960 v FC Ulqini (Randalls Island 74, 12pm)
Manhattan Celtic Legends v Shamrocks Over 30s (Pier 40, 9pm)
Shamrocks Legends v Banatul (Randalls Island 74, 10am)
Celtic Aces v Shamrocks Green (Leif Erickson, 6pm)
NYC United v Shamrocks White (Randalls Island 70, 7pm)

Rocks Green, Over 30s & 1960s aiming to extend perfect starts


The Shamrocks Over 30s have won three from three, reaffirming their pre-season status as one of the title favorites, and they will need to take that form into what is set to be a tough challenge on Sunday morning against unbeaten newcomers Between Rivers (Randalls 74, 8am).

“They have had a very good start to the season,” said Sean Mc Mullan. “But we have to be confident because we have players returning to the squad after missing last week’s win. It’ll be interesting to see what they are like. They are an unknown quantity as they are to the league but we’ll focus on ourselves and that should see us through.”

On Saturday evening, the first team will look to bounce back from a bruising defeat at Division 1 leaders Cedar Stars when they take on the new look Greek Americans at Randalls Island Field 70 at 8pm.

Newly installed coach Stephen Roche has guided the Greeks to a win and a draw while Rocks gaffer Kevin Grogan has lead his men to six points from nine.

“We had a good friendly game against Irish Rovers on Thursday in preparation for the Greeks,” said Grogan.

“It’s another big big game. We have played three of the top four teams in our first four games and it’s been a great barometer for us. I personally can’t wait for the game. Game day is the best day of the week by far.

“We have the squad to deal with a few injuries that we currently have. Concentration levels are key on Saturday.”

Rocks reserves will face what coach Dan Meola described as their “toughest test so far” in the 6pm kick-off.

“Every year, the Greeks have a highly competitive squad and this season is no different. They have had an unbeaten start to the season and are averaging close to five goals a game. It will be a statement game for both teams and one that we are looking forward to.”

The Shamrocks women’s teams will have a double header at St Michaels on Sunday with Shamrocks Green taking on NYC United at 11am and Shamrocks White playing Celtic Aces at 1pm.

Shamrocks Green are 2-0 thanks to a great 5-2 victory over Magic last Sunday and coach Paddy Geraghty has urged his players to keep the impressive run going.

“We have had tough games against United in the past,” said Geraghty. “If we bring the same level this week we’ll be hard to beat.”

Celtic Aces will be a tough challenge for Shamrocks White who are still seeking their first win of the season.

“We will be looking to rebound from two tough defeats,” said coach Keith Perez. “They are a good squad but we have the talent to match. I am hoping we rise to the occasion to bring in our first win.”

The late game on Sunday will see Beyond FC take on Shamrocks 1960 at Randalls Island Field 75 at 6pm.

“I’m looking forward to continuing our good run of form,” said coach Robbie O’Neill. “We’re playing a good Beyond FC side but we’ll be aiming to take another three points this weekend.”

The unbeaten Shamrocks Legends will head for Dyker Beach Park on Sunday morning to take on SC Gjoa.

“We always have a good battle with Gjoa and Dyker Beach Park is always a tough trip,” said John Riordan. “We’re missing a couple of key players in Ger Shivnan and Ryan Thompson but we added to the squad this week and we’ll approach the game positively.”

Frost’s four fires Rocks Green to victory

  • Geraghty’s Green rout Magic
  • Tough loss for firsts at Cedar Stars
  • 1960 and Over 30s perfect through three
  • Legends record first win of season

WEEKEND RESULTS - 201819Georgia Frost was the standout player of the day on Sunday, her four goals helping Shamrocks Green roll past NY Magic on a 5-2 scoreline at East River Park.

Leslie Fajfar scored on her debut to ensure Paddy Geraghty’s team have started the league with two wins from two.

“A great win,” reacted Geraghty. “To beat the defending champions 5-2 while missing several starters and our goalkeeper took a massive effort and everyone stepped up.

“Probably the most satisfying win so far as a coach. We had quality debuts from Leslie Fajfar and Bridgette McCalla and a top performance from our midfield three with Georgia Frost scoring four goals.”

Earlier at the same venue, Shamrocks White lost 2-0 against Rovers.

“It was an unlucky result after the positive energy coming off the first game,” said coach Keith Perez. “We will be looking to bounce back from this loss.”

Meanwhile in CSL Division 1, it was also a tough day for Kevin Grogan’s first team who came out on the wrong end of a dominant 5-0 victory for Cedar Stars Academy at Ramapo College.

“We got beaten badly by a professional team but our season goals were neither achieved nor shattered,” said Grogan who will use Thursday night’s friendly against Long Island’s Irish Rovers to prepare for Saturday evening’s big game against the Greeks.

“It’s a long season. We win or we learn. On a positive note we got minutes for Steven Hutchison who is returning from a bad knee injury and we got Sam Huteson minutes too – he looks a real player. We also got Chris, Gabriel and Joey Zorbo minutes. We have an important two weeks ahead against the Greeks and Hoboken.”

There wasn’t much joy either in the reserves curtain raiser for Dan Meola for whom Darren Coleman’s penalty ultimately earned a draw after CSA’s late equalizer.

“Dominating the game and leaving with only a point was a tough pill to swallow,” said Meola.

“The lads controlled everything in the first half and should have been two up. A moment of loss in concentration allowed them to get back into the game but even from there we created the better chances. All in all, away to Cedar Stars, 9am Kickoff and only 12 men, we have a lot to be proud of. We are nowhere near our best and still difficult to beat. That bodes well for the weeks ahead.”

Both the 1960 and Over 30s teams have kept their perfect starts going.

Robbie O’Neill’s Metro 2 men secured another clean sheet as they overturned Barnstonworth Rovers 2-0 at Randall’s Island courtesy of goals from Hughie McGowan and Dan Meola.

“I’m delighted with the win,” said O’Neill. “It was a good competitive game. Special mention to Eric Doyle who pulled of some fantastic saves and also to Hughie McGowan who they had no answer for. The whole team played unbelievably well. We’re on to another tough game next Sunday evening against Beyond.”

It wasn’t easy for the Over 30s against CPR but a pair of goals for Johnny McGeeney early on in both halves ensured a valuable 2-1 win against a potential title rival.

“I was very happy to get the three points today against a very good and organized CPR team,” said assistant coach Paddy Mc Carry.

“They have three or four brilliant players and played well as a team. We were not at our full strength and we were missing a few big players. We did not play as well as we did the last two weeks but we got the three points and we are still unbeaten and have full points from three games.

“So a good day at the office – it’s a sign of a good team when you don’t play well and still get the win. The boys battled and fought for everything and got what they deserved.”

The Shamrocks Legends got their first win of the season on Sunday, a 2-1 win over Barnstonworth Old Boys at Randalls Island.

It was a come-from-behind victory which arrived courtesy of second half goals from Marcus Nascimento and Ryan Thompson.

“i couldn’t be happier with the win,” said John Riordan. “It wasn’t easy but we battled all the way to the end. We’re still getting used to each other but to be unbeaten after three games is a great start.

“Brilliant to have Ryan Thompson back and getting on the scoresheet and it was also a huge boost to have Brendan Donoghue returning as well.”

Rocks striker Cameron named CSL player of the week

WEEKEND SCHEDULE - 2018_19Shamrocks striker Kurt Cameron has been named player of the week by the Cosmopolitan Soccer League heading into Sunday morning’s daunting trip to New Jersey to take on league runners-up Cedar Stars Academy (Ramapo College Athletic Complex, 11am).

After a double against his old club Doxa last Sunday, Cameron now has three goals and will face the other form forwards in the league, Christopher Katona and Bledi Bardic.

“It definitely means a lot,” said Cameron, “because this league has a lot of great players. But getting the win is always more important. Cedar Stars are one of the hottest teams right now and we’ll have to bring our best game against them. We’re focused and will be ready to play for Sunday.”

The Shamrocks are joint top of the league with Pancyprians but Cedar Stars have only played one game – a 6-1 win demolition of Zum Schneider in week one – while also clinching the Rapaglia Cup last weekend.

“Sunday will be our hardest game so far,” said Coach Kevin Grogan.

“They have a squad full of professionals on loan. We can’t wait for that challenge because it allows our players to prove they are at that level. The NYCFC scout will be in attendance so it’s a chance for our players to showcase themselves. We have a good chemistry and team / club spirit at the moment and that counts for a lot on game day. Steady wins the race.”

It will be a 9am kick-off for the reserves who will face a team boasting an impressive streak of wins.

“Cedar Stars are growing into one of the elite teams in the CSL,” said Coach Dan Meola.

“Their first team has strengthened a great deal which means their reserves will have added quality as well. Last season, they won eight of nine to end the season and they have carried that form into this campaign. It will be a tough game, an early game, but the lads have to be up for it.”

Shamrocks 1960 have scored 12 goals in their first two games but gaffer Robbie O’Neill has cautioned his team against being over confident as they prepare to take on Barnstonworth Rovers on Sunday afternoon (Randalls 74, 2pm).

“We’re looking forward to the game but I believe it’ll be a tougher test for us,” said O’Neill.

The Over 30s can make it three from three if they overcome Central Park Rangers Old Boys in Sunday’s first game (Randalls 75, 8am). With a pair of victories each secured with a trio of goals, three is proving the magic number for Sean Mc Mullan’s men.

“We have had a strong start but we are very much focused on keeping the run going,” the Over 30s boss said.

It will be a Shamrocks double header at Randalls 75 with the Legends following the Over 30s at 10am, Barnstonworth Old Boys the opponents for John Riordan’s men.

“We have a few players back available to us which is encouraging,” said Riordan. “We are very much targeting that first win which would have us in great shape after three games.”

Meanwhile, in the Metropolitan Women’s Soccer League, Shamrocks White and Shamrocks Green will be at the newly revamped East River Park for games against Rovers (9am) and Magic (1pm) respectively.

“We always have a tough game against Magic and I’m sure this will be no different,” said Geraghty. “We are missing a few players too so it increases the challenge but it gives others a chance to prove themselves.”