Home season comes to an end with Boleskine thriller

August 27th, 2018 No comments

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After the disappointment of Inverness failing to fulfil the reversed home fixture the week previously, the club were  very happy to welcome Boleskine to Sgoil Shiaboist and bring the home season to a close for 2018.

Boleskine are a much changed side this year, and have one of the best young players in Scotland, William “Crossal” MacKinnon in their armoury and the U17 international got Boleskine off to a good start with a 30 yard rocket on 17 minutes.

The scores stayed pegged at 1-0 until the hour mark when Stuart MacRae converted a penalty to make it 2-0 and usher in one of the craziest ten minutes seen on the West Side. Scott pulled it back to 2-1 before Stewart MacRitchie popped up almost straight from the throw-up to draw us level.

However, the Loch Ness side club restored a one goal advantage to make it 3-2 minutes on the 69th minute through Ross Anderson.

It was a tight game until the end when young Mackinnon got his second in injury time to let Boleskine go home with the two points and a 4-2 victory.

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Thanks to Boleskine for coming over, it was good to see them back after not making the trip the last two years. Thanks to them and all the clubs who made the effort to come over to Shawbost this year. Thanks to Henry MacInnes for refereeing. And last, but not least, thanks to all our supporters for helping make a great atmosphere this season in all weathers.

We finish the season with three away games, Caberfeidh next week, Beauly the week after, and on the 22nd the legendary away trip to Kilmallie.  All challenging fixtures but hopefully we can take some points along the way to finish off what has already been a very successful season.

 

Junior Shinty

With the schools now back in session, it’s a good time to remind everyone on what we have on offer in terms of junior shinty.

On Fridays, there is a shinty session for all Nicolson Institute pupils at the all weather pitch from 2pm-3pm.

Also on Fridays, we have a session for Primary 6 & up at the pitch at Stornoway Primary from 5pm-6pm.

Finally, on Saturdays, we have a session for those in Primary 1 – Primary 5. This session takes place from 1pm-2pm & is also at the pitch at Stornoway Primary.

We cater for all levels of experience. So whether they have played before or are a complete novice, they can come along along and get involved.

Loss to Strathspey away; Alba boys meet an old friend

July 29th, 2018 No comments

 

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The first team travelled on Saturday to Grantown-on-Spey for the away game versus Strathspey and suffered a 4-0 loss.

The team was missing several regulars and also had a few players feeling the effects of recent illness, and there was a recall for Honorary Club Chieftain Sean MacLeod who has been unavailable this season.

As our team played against a strong wind in the first half, Strathspey plundered four goals and if not for some great saves by John in goals it might have been more. However, in the second half it finished 0-0 with some much improved play and the young players growing in confidence and ability. Callum MacRitchie had a good game in the midfield and Alicia MacSween played well at wing-back. The game will stand them in good stead for the future.

August only has two home games – Inverness on August 11th and Boleskine on August 25th. Hopefully both teams will travel to complete a first clean sweep of teams travelling over since our first league season in 2011!


After the match, Ally and Sean went to represent the club at the Alba v England match in Kingussie, along with another long-term absentee Paddy Sinclair. Sean managed the national Gaelic team as they won this international representative match 11-1 and Paddy scored a fine goal. Get back in the Dubh is Gorm a Phaddy Diablo!

The lads also met up with former Camanachd Leòdhais youth player Robert Kearney who has continued to play the sport he picked up in Lewis back in England. Young Robert made an impressive showing as the youngest on the English side and it is great to see him stay involved in the game. Cùm a’ dol a Raibeart!37921412_2062352683788570_7927807169334870016_n

Young Hearach designs Camanachd Association 125 year logo

July 26th, 2018 No comments

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The Camanachd Association marks 125 years this year since its founding in the Victoria Hall in Kingussie on the 10th of October 1893.

A 125th anniversary logo has been chosen after a competition, which attracted hundreds of entries, was won by primary seven student John Robert Chisholm of Sgoil an t-Òib (Leverhulme Memorial School), Harris.

It is great that a pupil from our islands has achieved this honour.  Congratulations John Robert from all at Camanachd Leòdhais.

There are a range of events planned by the Association across Scotland to mark this milestone. One is the International Challenge match between Alba and England this Saturday (28/7) at the Dell, in Kingussie at 7pm .  There are several Camanachd Leòdhais players who will be involved with the Gaelic-speaking team’s fixture which happens after our away game versus Strathspey at 1.30pm. Crisdean, Ally and Dukey are the first team regulars in the squad, along with Sean and Paddy who both long histories with the Alba squad.  Good luck lads. The Player of the Match awards are sponsored by Isle of Harris Gin.

 

We also welcomed our good friend Katie Drain from the Camanachd Association for a One-Day Youth Camp this week. Thanks to Katie and the CA for runnigns this event along with our local coaches.

Uist end six year HebCelt famine with 5-3 victory in Stornoway

July 21st, 2018 No comments

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Uist Camanachd lifted their third Hebridean Celtic Festival Cup and their first since 2012 with a 5-3 victory over Camanachd Leòdhais at Bayhead, Stornoway in front of a healthy crowd.

Uist player-manager Graham Black had put together a good side, with some strong guest players to augment the native Uibhisteach talent, and with a youthful Dubh is Gorm side, with many making their HebCelt debut, it looked like it would be one of the most intriguing matches in years and so it proved.

Scott MacLeod opened the scoring for us on the quarter hour, but Uist levelled then went into the lead thanks to a penalty. Then Ruaraidh MacMillan levelled things to make it 2-2 just before half time.

Uist retook the lead in the second half, then added another swiftly, making it 4-2, but then Donald Lamont scored his seventh of the season to close the gap but Uist made sure of the Cup with a goal in the dying moments.Whilst it was disappointing from a Leòdhasach point of view, it was a well deserved victory in an entertaining match which stopped the Dubh is Gorm making it six wins in a row.

During the match Leòdhas’ Innes Lamont was taken to hospital with a head injury that required medical attention and everyone wishes him a swift recovery.

Many thanks to Henry MacInnes for refereeing. He named Uist’s Michael MacLeod as player of the match.

A great many thanks to the Hebridean Celtic Festival for their continued support of this fixture which is an invaluable tool for the promotion of shinty in the Western Isles.

Congratulations to Uist on their win and we look forward to next year’s clash with anticipation.

 

HebCelt Cup 2018 | 12 years of inter-island thrills and spills

July 16th, 2018 No comments

Hebridean Celtic Festival Inter-Island Shinty Cup 2018

Lewis V Uist

Bayhead, 2pm, Saturday 21 July 2018

Scott Murray Lewis Camanachd Shinty

That time of year again!  The big derby of the year with Uist is Saturday 21 July, 2PM at Bayhead. Big thanks as always to Caroline MacLennan and the whole Hebridean Celtic Festival team for their hospitality and support of this fixture which has been crucial to the development of shinty in the Western Isles over the last decade. There have been some classic games over the years, ever since the fixture first started in 2007. This will be the 12th running of this now iconic event.

History

The fixture was started in 2007 but with Uist unavailable the game was played between Camanachd Leodhais and a Hebcelt Allstars team which had some guests over for the festival cameo. This was played at the old Acres Pitch which is now a car park. Lewis won 3-0. There are no photos in evidence!

The 2008 version was played over two legs, with the first game held in North Uist at Easter.  Lewis won that game 4-2, but the game at Smith Avenue on the Saturday of the Festival was a close 2-2 draw, with Lewis grabbing the draw in he final seconds to secure the cup.

Camanachd Leodhais Celtic Festival

In 2009, there was a cloud over proceedings with the recent death of Craig Morrison.  On a rainy day which seemed to reflect the mood, in that sense the result was secondary although Uist played well to win 3-0, their first win in the competition and the first time the fixture was played at Bayhead. The picture at the top is also from that fixture with Lewis’ Scott Murray competing for the ball with Uist’s Steven Morrison as Sean “Rubens Banterchello” MacLeod looks on.

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In 2010, Lewis made an emphatic 4-1 win as the fixture returned to Bayhead, with Titch Morrison, Calum Stamper and Paul Duke piling in the goals.  The weather again was fairly inclement in the run up, but the game still drew a sizeable crowd as the weather improved rapidly in the second half.

 

Hebridean Celtic Festival 2010 Shinty Lewis

HebCelt 2010

2011 saw a Lewis team in their first season in the North leagues up against a Uist side who put up a good fight (although the fixture was reduced to 10 a side) in a 3-2 classic in blazing sunshine. Perhaps upwards of 500 people attended the match.

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In 2012, Uist, with a couple of mainland additions caught Lewis napping and won the cup 2-1 on penalties after a 2-2 stalemate. There was some more fine weather and another bumper crowd, which meant a good day for Hebridean Shinty no matter the result.

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2013 saw a dominant Lewis performance under the tutelage of Iain ‘Diablo’ Sinclair as the team made amends for the previous year with a 7-0 demolition of the Southern islanders. Duncan MacIntyre scored 4 in a complete performance against a strong Uist side.

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2014 was a 4-0 win for Lewis with goals from Will, Duncan, Ally and Dukey. It was another win for Diablo’s troops over another strong Uist side.

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2015 was another win for Lewis to make it 3 in a row for the first time. It was a tighter game with Uist restricting Lewis to only two goals, king of the Hebcelt Duncan scoring alongside Connor Chalmers. Diablo retired as manager having never lost the cup.

2016 saw a controversial last minute move to the astro at Smith Avenue, which robbed the game of appearances by Will Church and Keith “Trumisgarry” Macdonald but it was an entertaining match for what it was. Donald Lamont matched Duncan’s 2013 four goal haul alongside 2 from Scott MacLeod in a 6-nil game. However, Uist were much better than the scoreline suggested and Graham Black of Uist was a deserved man of the match.

HebCelt 2016

HebCelt 2016

2017 saw Uist up their game with Keith back in midfield and some new signings. It was the closest match in years and Lewis were pushed all the way for a 4-2 win. Dougie Shaw grabbed a brace alongside David Cleary and Paul Duke’s efforts.

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What 2018 holds in store for the fixture is unsure other than it will be another exciting game in the heart of Stornoway!

 

 

Dubh is Gorm hold on for the win in Shawbost classic v Strathglass

July 14th, 2018 No comments

The Dubh is Gorm continued this season’s fine form with a tense 4-3 win over Cannich’s Strathglass at a wet and windy Sgoil Shiaboist. The match was sponsored yet again by Outer Hebrides Campervan Hire.

The game started in fine fashion for the home fans with a Donald Lamont goal, but the game settled into a rhythm with both teams having opportunities. Strathglass would have been happy going into half-time 1-0 down when the wind would have been in their favour, but they switched off in the dying minutes to allow our boys to go in at the interval with a healthy 3-0 advantage thanks to  goals from Crisdean MacRae and Ruaraidh MacMillan. Great to see Ruaraidh back in the dubh is gorm.

The goal advantage was crucial as Strathglass were stung into action in the second half and with a gusting wind started to make big moves on Conor’s goal, with former Camanachd Leodhais player Eoghan Stewart leading the line. Fortunately the lads held on to the advantage for a good part of the second half, until Strathglass’ Colin Birnie scored on 71 minutes. Thankfully Donald struck for his sixth of the season moments later to restore our three goal advantage but Birnie grabbed two more goals in the next ten minutes to complete his hat-trick and set up a grand stand finish.

Thankfully, the grit and determination that the side has shown all season was in full evidence, and although Strathglass had a few more opportunities, the young Dubh is Gorm ground out a precious victory and push the team into 6th in the table on 11pts, one behind Lochaber.

Thanks to Strathglass for coming over with a young and talented team and being part of a great game. Thanks also to all the supporters who braved the elements.  Photo courtesy of Donald MacRitchie.

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Next week sees the annual clash with Uist Camanachd for the HebCelt Cup in the heart of Stornoway. Come along and enjoy the game at Bayhead at 2pm. Entry by donation.

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Thanks also to long term sponsors Woody’s Express for the smart new O’Neill’s strips which certainly seem to match the team’s newfound smartness on the park.

Leòdhasaich are Five Star V Kilmallie!

July 7th, 2018 No comments

 

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The first team got back to winning ways with a fantastic result against Kilmallie at Shawbost this Saturday 7 July.

There was a small crowd due to the Uig Gala Day and the World Cup, but those in attendance were treated to a great Dubh is Gorm performance.

Continuing his great run of form in front of goal, Ally Lamont opened the scoring on the 8th minute, then cult hero Al Reed, who has always been a great shy taker grabbed a goal direct from one of his shy efforts.

Scott MacLeod banged in a rocket from 30 yards for the third on the half hour and the team closed out the first half three goals up.

Kilmallie have a history of great comebacks at Shawbost though, starting the second half on a mission and a Stuart Ross goal on 63 mins had the Caol side believing, but then Donald Lamont popped up to score a few minutes later. Then young Callum MacRitchie scored a cracker of a first senior goal to make it 5-1 and secure the points for good with just over ten minutes remaining

5-1 is the club’s biggest winning margin at home in the league and the third time the club has scored 5 goals to win at home (Lochaber 2016, Strathspey 2013).

Thanks to Boyd MacKenzie for refereeing, and to Kilmallie for coming over. We always appreciate their efforts in sending teams to Lewis.

It was great way to get over the disappointment from last week when the club pushed league leaders Lovat all the way before succumbing to a late goal to lose 2-1 at home. Ally Lamont scored our goal.

Next week we welcome Strathglass to Shawbost looking to do the double over the Cannich side. Strathglass defeated Beauly 2-0 which allowed us to close the gap on the team in sixth.

The photo at the top is a very candid Al Reed.

Top Scorers

Paul Duke 6

Donald Lamont, David Cleary 4

Ally Lamont 3

Al Reed, Callum MacRitchie, Scott MacLeod, Peter Gomez, Alexander Gordon, Crisdean MacRae 1

 

David Cleary farewell goal not enough to prevent Lochaber leaving with points.

June 24th, 2018 No comments


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On Saturday, the first team had  a competitive game against Lochaber but the Spean Bridge side eventually came away from their visit to Shawbost with a 3-1 win.  It looked like we might get something from the game at halftime as David Cleary managed to level the scores at 1-1 but Lochaber grabbed two second half goals to put the result beyond doubt. However, the first team was competitive throughout and continue to show improvement with the big test of high scoring Lovat next weekend.

It was appropriate that David signed off from a brief but impactful Dubh is Gorm career with a goal against the team he also scored his very first goal against last season (in a slightly more ignominious 11-1 defeat). A native of Tipperary who grew up playing hurling, David has worked as a maths teacher at the Nicolson Institute for the last couple of years and the club has been very lucky to have his input on and off the pitch.  After a couple of games adapting to the change from hurling to shinty, David has become an important player with 7 goals to his credit. He has also had a big impact in the school, taking on the coaching burden after Ally Lamont left last session, and bringing through the excellent crop of youngsters who are now taking a much bigger role on the pitch.

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Donald Lamont said “For a man who has only played two half-seasons, David has had a big impact, he’s a great character and will be missed especially for his work with the youth. As a sign of his undoubted impact on the youth he was presented with a hurling helmet in Irish colours and a Tipperary sliotar by the young players he has coached.”

David now heads to Thailand to take up a teaching position abroad and he goes with our very best wishes, and he will always have a warm welcome in Eilean an Fhraoich. (David (left) pictured with Club Captain Peter Gomez and Ally Lamont)

 

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Derek Keir Visit

June 21st, 2018 No comments


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Defeat to Lochcarron brings unbeaten run of games to a close

June 16th, 2018 No comments

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The club’s record unbeaten run came to an end with a 5-2 home defeat to Lochcarron. Dukey scored his sixth of the season to draw us level early on, but Lochcarron went away with it early second half, Ally drew it back to 4-2 but na Carranaich went home with 5 goals to stop us going 5 without loss. Thanks to Lochcarron for coming over, always appreciate their support for shinty in Lewis and Harris. It’s been a good month though, and shows the great potential the club has with dedication, effort and organisation. Thanks also to all who came and supported, including Ina and Crisdean Mòr coming all the way from Achmore (Stromeferry not the Lewis one!). Taing mhòr gu Ina airson na dealbhan cuideachd! Bu mhath ur faicinn.

We now face a run of three challenging home fixtures over the next wee while, Lochaber, Lovat then Kilmallie. Hopefully the clubs are all able to make the trip to Lewis this season.

Top Scorers

Paul Duke 6

Donald Lamont, David Cleary 3

Ally Lamont, Peter Gomez, Alexander Gordon, Crisdean MacRae 1

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Photos by Ina MacRae