History of the Westmeath Minotaurs

Club History of the Westmeath Minotaurs


2013 Senior: 1 Win/6 Losses/1 Tie. 
Head Coach Paddy Lally

Highlights – The one win came over the Meath Bulldogs in the final game of the season. Tied the Meath Bulldogs in the second game. In the one win of the year the team scored a season high total of 18 with two TD passes from C. Brennan to S. Walsh and A. Corcoran contributing for the defense with a pick 6.

Awards: MVP- Conor Brennan (QB)
Players Player of the Year – Niall Corcoran (DE/FB)
Offensive Player of the Year – Dermot Corroon (RB)
Defensive Player of the Year – Adam Corcoran (LB).  


2014 Senior: 4 Wins/4 Losses.
Head Coach Paddy Lally

Highlights – Played the Cork Admirals and Meath Bulldogs twice, trading wins and losses. Season ending game against Drogheda witnessed the defense blank the Lightning and the offense scoring a season high 44 points with C. Brennan connecting 4 times to S. Walsh and N. Folan; the Corcoran brothers teamed up for a TD each and J. Bruton’s nearly perfect leg delivered 5 PATs and a field goal. 


2015 Senior: 0 Wins/8 Losses.
Head Coach Paddy Lally

Highlights – 2015 was a difficult year for the club. The offense struggled to put points on the board with only one game reaching double digit numbers. In that 2nd game, S. McCormack threw for 2 TDs to N. Folan with a J. Bruton PAT that totalled up a season high 13 points. Throughout the year the defense gave up an average of 25.25 points per game. 


2016 Senior: 4 Wins/4 Losses.
Head Coach Diarmaid Hyland

Highlights: The offense showed some life with big games against the South Kildare Soldiers and the Tyrone Titans. Early June witnessed the most dominating game in club history. The Minotaurs blanked the Tyrone Titans and disintegrated the opposing defense with 70 points registered on the scorecard. C. Brennan connected with multiple receivers for 7 TDs and the defense added 3 scores of their own. 

Awards: MVP – Dermot Corroon (RB)
Offensive Player of the Year – J.O. Coyne (OL)
Defensive Player of the Year – Jack Lynch (DB)
Players Player of the Year – Adam Corcoran (LB)
Special Teams Player of the Year – Shane Walsh
Rookie of the Year – David Walsh


2017 Senior: 3 Wins/5 Losses.
Head Coach Paddy Lally
Assistant Coach Bill Dougherty

Highlights: The year started with a win against Wexford but stalled with four consecutive losses, including the memorable last second loss to the Rhinos as their kicker put one through the uprights. The best game of the year occurred in South Kildare as the offense put up 33 points and the defense held the Soldiers to only 6 points. In that game the offense put up 302 total yards with 240 of those on the ground. The Westmeath squad closed out the year with a convincing win against the eventual IAFL1 champion, Louth Mavericks.

Awards: MVP: Niall Folan (DB)
Youth MVP – David Walsh


2018 Senior:  Regular Season 6 Wins/2 Losses
Playoff Appearance
Head Coach Conor Brennan
Assistant Coach Bill Dougherty
Assistant Coach Paddy Lally
Assistant Coach Adam Corcoran
Team Captain: JO Coyne

Highlights – This season saw the team reach the playoffs for the first time in club history.  Struggles against the Ulster teams left the team still determined to make a run for the playoffs. Strength and momentum was built up over time. Near the end of the regular season, the Minotaurs traveled to Eagle country for a true test. In the game against Wexford the defense dominated the statistically most powerful offense in IAFL1 while the offense contributed 3 touchdowns in an away game that saw many starters unable to participate. The depth chart proved deep as many players stepped up and had incredible performances. The final game against the Crusaders from Cill Dara showed the team was hitting on all cylinders and confident of a deep playoff run. 

Unfortunately, the West Dublin Rhinos outlasted us in our first playoff game at home. In a tough defensive game, marred self-inflicted wounds, the Minotaurs tasted defeat to the eventual IAFL1 champions. Although disappointed in the result, the club realized it had achieved much and looked with great anticipation to the next year of football. 

Awards: Clubman of the Year: Conor Brennan
MVP: Niall Corcoran (RB)
Co-Offensive Players of the Year: JO Coyne (LT) & Stephen Goonery (LG)
Defensive Player of the Year: Jayo McBride (MLB)
Players Player of the Year – Jayo McBride (MLB)
Coach’s Player of the Year – Niall Folan (DB)
Special Teams Player of the Year – Niall King (K)
Most Improved Player – Ros McAdden (C/DT)
Rookie of the Year – Conor Dougherty (DE)
Performance of the Year – Darren Sammon (LB)
Play of the Year – Jay Bruton’s Field Goal vs Rhinos

Stat Leaders: Rushing – Niall Corcoran
Receiving – Jack Lynch
Scorer – Dermot Corroon
Tackles – Jason McBride
Sacks – Jason McBride
Interceptions – Joe Kinahan 


2019 Senior:   Regular Season 6 Wins /  2 Losses.
Championship Game Appearance
Head Coach Conor Brennan
Assistant Coach Bill Dougherty
Assistant Coach Paddy Lally
Assistant Coach Adam Corcoran
Captains: JO Coyne, Joe Kinahan, Steven Nally, Jayo McBride

Highlights – The team started the new season with new look. The uniform jerseys were replaced for the 1st time since the team formed and a bold helmet insignia of a ‘W’ proclaimed team pride in County Westmeath.

The team’s performance was the best on record and the years of hard work began to pay off for the Minotaurs. The team demolished opponents early in the season with an overwhelming offense and stingy defense. Late in the season the team experienced two straight losses that readjusted the focus of everyone for the coming playoffs. 

Hosting their second home playoff game, the Minotaurs welcomed arch rival the Wexford Eagles to Mullingar. The game went back and forth but the Minotaurs controlled the game at the end and came away with a convincing win. 

Heading into the first championship game in club history, the team was confident but wary of the powerful Craigavon Cowboys. Played in Navan, the game would go downs as the most incredible game played on Irish soil. In a seesaw battle of true championship caliber teams the Minotaurs would lose in the final minute. Going for the win with a two point conversion, the completed pass would come up under an inch short. No regrets as the team left it all on the field. 

Awards: MVP: Joe Kinahan (QB)
Clubman of the Year: Bill Dougherty
Offensive Player of the Year: Jack Lynch (WR)
Defensive Player of the Year: Steven Nally (OLB)
Players Player of the Year – Rafael Monteiro (RB/DB)
Coach’s Player of the Year – Jay Bruton (RB)
Special Teams Player of the Year – Cormac Fagan
Most Improved Player – Colin Regan (OL)
Rookie of the Year – Cormac Fagan (WR)
Performance of the Year – Darren Sammon (LB) vs Galway
Play of the Year – Sean Dalton vs Galway – one handed catch
Special Recognition: Thomas Casey – Team Photographer

Stat Leaders: Rushing – Andrew Paton
Receiving – Jack Lynch
Scorer – Andrew Paton
Tackles – Jayo McBride
Sacks – Steven Nally
Interceptions – Niall Folan

Labyrinth (Hall of Fame) Inductees:  Paddy Lally, Michael McCormack, Paddy Coyne


2020 Senior: Regular Season cancelled due to COVID-19 Pandemic.  

Head Coach Bill Dougherty
Assistant Coach Conor Brennan
Assistant Coach Paddy Lally
Assistant Coach Liam Nugent
Captains: JO Coyne, Joe Kinahan, Steven Nally, Niall King

With just one week to go before the first game and with months of training logged the entire season was cancelled. The team set its sights on a hopeful 2021 and a return to American Football. Many players used the time to focus on fitness and study of the game to be better prepared whenever conditions allowed a return to play. 


2021 Senior: Regular Season Cancelled. 2 Friendlies played.
2 Wins/0 Losses

Head Coach: Bill Dougherty
Offensive Coordinator: Conor Brennan
Defensive Coordinator: Paddy Lally
Captains: JO Coyne, Joe Kinahan, Steven Nally, Niall King

​After months of waiting and on and off training, the Minotaurs returned to the field for 4 scheduled friendly games in lieu of a regular season. Unfortunately, only 2 games were played.
The Minotaurs defeated the Meath Bulldogs 42-0 and the Cill Dara Crusaders 34-8 in 2 strong showings, creating momentum for the 2022 season.


2022 Senior. Return to regular competition, post-pandemic. Friendly win vs Phila. Blue Flame. 7 wins/1 loss Regular Season. Semi win & Division 1 Championship win. Total Win/Loss 10/1. Season had 4 forfeits due to Trinity and Wexford Eagles dropping from competition. 

Head Coach Bill Dougherty, Defensive Coord. Paddy Lally; Offensive Coord. Conor Brennan

Captains: J.O. Coyne, Steven Nally, Joe Kinahan, Niall King.

Westmeath Minotaurs mark tenth anniversary season (from Westmeath Independent/Examiner)

The Westmeath Minotaurs American Football Club celebrate their 10th competitive season in 2022. The original players first took the field in 2013 and predictably struggled to establish themselves within the Irish American Football Association.

With little to no experience of playing or coaching American football, low player numbers, almost no equipment, and limited financial resources, wins were hard to come by. It’s a ten-year story of perseverance and resilience.

It’s not easy to keep getting up after repeatedly getting knocked down. The saying repeated often by coach Conor Brennan rang true early on, and still does: “We never lose, we either win or learn.”

The club certainly learned much over ten years. The cumulative result of a lot of hard work is a club with a senior kitted championship game appearance, a flag football championship, over 50 club members, numerous supporting alumni, proper training equipment, and resources that will sustain the club into the future. Most importantly, the club has confidence.

Club Chairman Ros McAdden wants to set the bar a bit higher in 2022 with plans for some major and supporting events. To give back to the community, the club is organizing a charity game for St Patrick’s Day weekend against a team from the United States. The opponents are the Philadelphia Blueflame.

The Blueflame is the Philadelphia Police and Fire Departments’ combined team which focuses on raising money for charity while playing the game they love. The supported charity for the game on March 19 is the Lakeland Area Retreat and Cancer Centre, or LARCC.

As long as Covid restrictions allow, the club will also host a pub quiz in February supporting LARCC. The Blueflame is also raising funds for LARCC back in Philadelphia. This game is the first of the season that will no doubt challenge the Minotaurs and be a great experience. After the Blueflame game, the sights are set on returning to the final and bringing home a championship to Westmeath.

Training for the 10th anniversary season starts next Sunday, January 9 at the Mullingar RFC from 10am to 12pm.

Later in the month on Saturday, January 23 from 9 to 11am at the Athlone Regional Sports Centre is the club’s Rookie Day. Everyone is welcome and no experience is required. If you can’t make Rookie Day, you’re welcome at any of our training sessions throughout the year.


Westmeath Minotaurs American Football Club hosted the Philadelphia Blue Flame last weekend in the

Sergeant Patrick McDonald Memorial Game all in aid of LARCC (Lakeland Area Respite & Cancer

Centre). Through the combined effort of both teams, a superb total of €6003.83 was raised for this

fantastic local charity. The Philadelphia Blue Flame team travelled to Ireland for the week all the way from the United States to honour and remember their fallen comrade. The team consists of serving policemen from the State of Pennsylvania. The charity game was held at Pairc Chiarain Athlone on Saturday March 19th. The visiting team arrived with a garda escort to the pitch and took to the field led by a piper. The national anthems were followed by the coin toss performed by Patsy McDonald, mother of Sergeant Patrick McDonald. 

The game got underway with ferocious defensive performances from both sides resulting in the 1st

Quarter ending with no score. This was to change in the 2nd Quarter when an excellent punt from Niall

King pinned the Blue Flame inside their 10-yard line. The Blue Flame, under pressure so close to their

end-zone snapped the ball inaccurately and as it rolled out the back of their end zone the Minotaurs were up 2-0. The Minotaur’s Offensive stalwarts closed out the second quarter with a perfect throw from QB Joe Kinahan to receiver Jack Lynch. Lynch secured the pass with a fantastic catch under pressure for 18 yards and a touchdown. We entered half time with the Minotaurs leading 8-0 after an unfortunate missed extra point. Scoring recommenced in the 4th quarter with an outstanding 63 yard interception return by Free Safety Niall Folan for a second Minotaur touchdown. Cornerbacks Peter Dempsey and Jordan Lacey paved the road for Niall with some courageous open-field blocking. Jay Bruton’s extra point was good, leaving the score 15-0 to the Minotaurs. The Blue Flame weren’t finished yet though, and on their next possession they marched the football right down the field despite the Minotaurs’s best efforts. From the 2-yard line the Blue Flame Quarterback took the ball into the endzone on a QB Sneak to get their first touchdown of the day. Blue Flame then went for 2 and scored leaving the scoreboard 15-8 to the home side. The subsequent on-side kick attempted by the Blue Flame was in vain and with the clock rolling down they failed to regain possession. The game ended 15-8 with Westmeath Minotaurs lifting the Sergeant Patrick McDonald Memorial Trophy.

MVPs were named as QB Joe Kinahan and Linebacker Steven Nally, who stole the show with 3 sacks and

9 tackles(5 for a loss) on the day. Minotaurs next play Wexford Eagles at 2pm on April 3rd 

(Mullingar RFC), as they begin their 2022 hunt for a division championship!


After the big win against the Blue Flame the team celebrated in Mullingar’s pubs and clubs. The Blue Flame were present at the celebrations and a good time was had by all. When leaving from Dublin Airport, Joe Hansbury, emphasized that he wanted the Minotaurs to travel to Philadelphia for St. Patrick’s Day 2023. The club committee resolved to organize this trip at a club meeting in March 2022. 

Following the St. Patrick’s day win, the team was disappointed by two forfeits by the Wexford Eagles. The Eagles withdrew entirely from competition just before the second forfeit leaving a giant hole in the 2022 schedule. The reason for the collapse of the Eagles was low player numbers. 

Between March and late May there was only one game played. The Minotaurs come away 13-0 victors against a very tough Vipers outfit. The Minotaurs offense started the game with a perfect drive that seen QB Joe Kinahan find several receivers before finding number one target Jack Lynch in the corner of the endzone for an opening drive score. The Minotaurs offense would then struggle against a stingy Vipers defense for the rest of the game. This meant our defensive outfit had to step up and did they ever. Our defence was outstanding again seeing Peter Dempsey and Niall Folan come away with 2 interceptions each. A fourth down stop late set the Minotaurs up with a chance to score to put away the game. We handed the ball to Jay Bruton who cut back left behind blocks by Dermot Corroon and Jo Coyne to power in a 15 yard touchdown to seal the win. The ensuing pat would be blocked which seen a viper player scooping it, seeming to be on the way for a score Jack Lynch showed incredible heart to chase him down keeping the Vipers off the scoreboard and guaranteeing the defense a well deserved shut out. The coaches will feel we left a lot of points out there offensively but are happy with a win against such a tough team. We now have a 5 week break before our next game so the Minotaurs will return to training this Sunday at the Mullingar rugby club and get back to work straight away.

The Minotaurs came away from Derry with a hard fought 24-7 victory. We got off to an unusually bad start which seen us a score down early on followed by a fumble on offence. Luckily we were able to find our feet and levelled up the score with a Jack Lynch catch from Joe Kinahan throw after some fantastic running by Rafa Monterio. Unfortunately a injury to a viper seen the game halted and in jeopardy. Luckily the game continued which seen us continue to grow into the game. We found ourselves 17-7 up after a Jay Bruton field goal (who also kicked 3/3 xps) and another Jack Lynch touchdown catch from a Joe deep ball. Peter Dempsey was able to snag another interception to take his season tally to 3 in 2 games which resulted in a Joe QB sneak to finish off the scoring. We thank everyone from the vipers for another great game and wish their injured player a speedy recovery. We now turn our attention to the Vikings next Sunday in Limerick.

The Minotaurs come away from Limerick with a hard fought 16-0 win in what was dirty conditions. Joe Kinahan found Jack Lynch on the very first offensive play of the game for a long touchdown to open up the scoring with Jay Bruton converting the PAT. Then the rain started and slowed the game right down. Both teams played fierce defense all day with several fumbles on both sides. A fumble by the Vikings in good field position allowed Jay Burton to score a field goal to put us up 10-0 in the third. Jason Owens then recovered a fumble in the fourth quarter that gave the Minotaurs an opportunity to finish off the game. After some hard running to chew up the clock, Joe rolled out of the pocket to find tight end Conor Dougherty for the game sealing score. The defense then went back on the field to continue their stout form by turning the ball over again to allow us to kneel out the game. Massive thanks to the Vikings for a bruising game and the opportunity to play on a fantastic pitch. We have now secured a spot in the playoffs for the third season in a row.


The Minotaurs bet the Crusaders today by a scoreline of 34-7. The Minotaurs defense forced a quick three out to set up the offense to score on our first drive with another Joe Kinahan to Jack Lynch first drive touchdown, their third of the year. The Crusaders struck straight back with a big passing score that set a fire under the Minotaurs defense who were relentless after it. Jason Owens scored on a 50 yard pick six for our second score of the day, the highlight of a another fantastic game for our secondary which seen several interceptions including three for Peter Dempsey and one each for Adam Corcoran and Niall Folan. Offensively the game was marred by plenty of flags but the Minotaurs still managed to move the ball consistently. Andrew Paton and Rafa Monterio combined for over 100 yards and a score for Andrew. Joe Kinahan powered over another rushing score before finding Dermot Corroon for another touchdown pass to round out the scoring. Shaun Dalton also had a stellar day with multiple catches, rushes and returns. This leaves us undefeated at the top of the table with a record of 7-0 due to another team forfeiting their season. While this is disappointing we stay focused on the task on at hand with the visit of the Vikings next week who are looking for revenge after our shut out victory in Limerick.

Westmeath Minotaurs set for championship game

Westmeath Minotaurs American Football Club are set to make their second Bowl appearance in a row having won last week’s semi-final. The Minotaurs will now play University of Limerick Vikings in the Belfast decider on July 31.

Last week’s semi-final versus the Donegal/Derry Vipers was never in doubt as the Minotaurs finished the day with a score of 41-6. The Minotaurs started scoring early with two touchdowns from backs Andrew Paton and Jay Bruton. The half ended with an outstanding interception from safety Niall Folan on the goal-line to foil the Vipers 2-point conversion.

The second half opened with a pick-six from Peter Dempsey leaving him on a record eight interceptions so far this season. The Minotaurs followed again with a second couplet of touchdowns from running backs Andrew Paton and Rafa Monteiro. Niall Folan drove in the final nail with another pick-six to finish off the scoring. Kicker Jay Bruton was in fine form again making 5/6 PATs.

Westmeath Minotaurs claim first championship victory

The Westmeath Minotaurs American football team proved victorious over University of Limerick Vikings in their close-fought Belfast final last Sunday.

After falling to a 6-13 deficit at half time, the Minotaurs gave an exemplary second half performance to leave it 16-13 after a nail-biting conclusion.

The Vikings started the game in possession until linebacker Steve Baker stripped the UL fullback and the ball was recovered by Jason Owens. The highlight of the Minotaurs drive that followed was a 25-yard pass from QB Joe Kinahan to Dermot Corroon. This left the Westmeath side in prime position for a field goal, but the ball sailed wide and the score remained 0-0.

The Vikings did score on their next drive however, their touchdown pass connecting from five yards out to put them up seven. Catastrophe followed on the next Minotaur possession as key player and captain Joe Kinahan injured his ankle and was out for the game.

The Minotaurs were boosted though, first by quarterback Dermot Corroon and then by veteran coach and quarterback Conor Brennan after his 40-yard touchdown pass to receiver Jack Lynch. Jay Bruton treaded the posts and it was back level at 7-7.

The Vikings’ running game provided a defensive challenge for the Minotaurs as they scored again on their next drive to leave them ahead 6-13. That score would prove to be their last though, and on the last UL possession of the half, the Minotaurs’ defense forced them to punt, leaving it a one score game.

After half-time, the Minotaurs were back in possession. The drive started with disaster with a sack on quarterback Conor Brennan leaving them at second and 30. That setback proved irrelevant for a cruising Minotaur offense.

After two passes in quick succession, the Minotaurs were back at first and 10 and in position for a field goal. The field goal was no good though and after all their work the Minotaurs would need to come back again.

And they did. On the next Minotaur drive they surged forward, with a key third and 10 conversion from quarterback Conor Brennan to Jack Lynch. From 30 yards out, Running back Andrew Paton followed up with two bruising runs as he flattened Limerick defenders on his way to another touchdown. Limerick blocked the PAT and it was 13-13 going into the final quarter.

On the next kickoff, Jay Bruton struck a low, skipping ball that threw the Vikings into confusion and allowed a speedy Jordan Lacey to swoop in and recover it. Thus, the Minotaurs stole possession again and made it count with a field goal scored to leave it 16-13. The Minotaurs had the lead for the first time.

In the dying minutes of the fourth quarter, it was left to the Minotaurs defense to decide the game. UL took to the field knowing any score would do to give them a win or extra time. The Westmeath defense were their typical relentless selves and after several kamikaze tackles and an excellent pass broken up by defensive back Jordan Lacey, it was all over.

Following the game, the Minotaurs were presented with the new AFI Division 1 Trophy, while RB Andrew Paton was awarded with match MVP after a fantastic performance.