Gardaí pay the penalty as Special Olympics Club makes it two in a row!

Lauren McNamara collects the cup for the Special Olympics soccer team following their penalty shootout win against Roscommon Garda at the Community Sports Park in Lisnamult last Friday night. Pic courtesy of Mick Byrne

The Roscommon Special Olympics soccer team emerged victorious over the Roscommon Gardaí for the second year running following a dramatic penalty shootout at the Community Sports Park in Lisnamult last Friday night.

The Special Olympics players held their nerve to win the shootout 7-5 and will now be aiming to complete a three-in-a-row in 2023.

Congratulating the team on their success, Chairperson of Roscommon Special Olympics, Jacqueline McCormack paid tribute to all those who made the event possible.

“To our wonderful bunch of athletes who never give up, who showed up at every training session and who do everything that is asked of them without complaining and most importantly, who light up our club by just being themselves, thank you every single one of you. We are going for three in a row in 2003!”

The Special Olympics Chairperson also paid tribute to Roscommon Gardaí, who came up just short on the night.

“Roscommon Gardaí are a wonderful bunch of people who really get into the spirit of this event and add so much to the joy and enthusiasm the Special Olympics players get from the occasion. We are very grateful to you. A special mention to Sgt. Ronan O’Meara and Inspector David Cryan for your help in organising,” she said.

Roscommon Special Olympics soccer players celebrate their big win last Friday night at the Community Sports Park in Lisnamult. Pic: Mick Byrne

Jacqueline went on to thank all volunteers on the night including Kathleen Carr, Ash Galway, as well as Jim and Marie Casey (Supermac’s), Patricia Morris and Comhaltas, Dealz, Roscommon Community Sports Park committee, Una, Jacinta and Mick for photographs, Roscommon Town youth soccer coaches Paul Duignan, Olympia Michaela and John Hannon, Friday night’s referee Brian, and Special Olympics volunteers Anne, Ursula, David, Rachel, Clodagh, Caoimhe, Lorraine, Olympia, Maura, Bob, and Marie.

“You are the backbone of the club and no events would ever be possible without your support. Thank you to the parents and care workers who bring our athletes to their sessions. It was heart-warming to see all the supporters that came out on Friday to cheer both teams on,” she concluded.