Category: Season Report

The Dublin Rebels Annual Awards Night 2018


And the Winner is…

This past Saturday night, the Dublin Rebels held our Annual Awards night for 2018. The night is a yearly celebration of the team and individual achievements for the past football season.

This years venue was the Toast restaurant in the Temple Bar Hotel, followed by further celebrations in Buskers on the Ball downstairs.

After a welcome message from club Chairman Vinny Dooley to all of the players and guests in attendance it was on to the awards.

Rookie of the Year

As is tradition, the first of the evenings awards went to the Rookie of the Year, and this was taken home by the first Rebel born this side of the 2000s, Receiver and Game Reporter, Calum Walsh.

Rookie of the Year – Calum Walsh receiving his award from Chairman Vinny Dooley

Most Improved Player

Next up on the awards, was that of Most Improved Player. A difficult award to win given some extremely stiff competition, and this year the award went to Running Back Pete McMahon, to cap off a season where the Navan man scored the game winning touchdown in the recent Irish Wolfhounds victory over the Belgian Barbarians.

Most Improved Player – Pete McMahon receives his award from Paul Grogan


Special Teams MVP

The Special Teams MVP was up next, and McMahon wasn’t done collecting glass, picking up another award for his outstanding contribution to the Return and Kicking Units.

Special Teams MVP – Pete McMahon receives the award from ST coordinator Conor Ryan



At this point in the evening, we took a detour from our Annual Awards to acknowledge four of our long serving players. When a player reaches 10 years of service with the Dublin Rebels, they are awarded a set of silver Rebels cufflinks. This year we had 4 players reach that milestone

The recipients of their Cufflinks this year are, Robert Smith, Steven Walsh, Ross McCooey and Eoin Daly(not pictured).

Smith, Walsh and McCooey receive their 10 year Cufflinks


Offensive MVP

Back to the annual Awards and next up was the Offensive MVP. In most cases the Big dogs on the O-Line rarely get enough love, however this years winner of the Offensive MVP is Lineman Alfredo Meneses


Offensive MVP – Alfredo Meneses receives his award from Offensive coordinator Andrew Dennehy


Defensive MVP

The next award of the evening was the Defensive MVP. And the winner of the award, human wrecking ball and QB nightmare giver, Simon Mackey. Unfortunately Simon was unable to collect his award on the evening, and so it was collected on his behalf by his squire, Cian Spain.

Defensive MVP – Simon Mackeys award is collected on his behalf by Cian Spain from Defensive coordinator Steven Walsh


The last of our yearly awards was that of Rebel of the Year. This award is not solely awarded based on play, but on overall contribution to the club on and off the field, and for showing the attitude that embodies everything it means to be a Dublin Rebel. The 2018 Rebel of the Year goes to David Rothwell.

Rebel of the Year – David Rothwell recives his “Rebel of the Year” award from Chairman Vinny Dooley


Hall of Fame Inductees

In a break from previous years, we had two Dublin Rebels Hall of Fame Inductees.


Paul Smyth

Paul started with the Rebels in 2003, another 10 year man who has his Cufflinks. A dominant Defensive End and Tight End throughout his career. He left the game with 6 Shamrock Bowl Titles, 3 Rebel of the Year awards, and now his gold jacket.

Hall of Fame Inductee – Paul Smyth, introduced by Paul Grogan


Andrew Flynn

Andy Flynn is one of the founding members of the Dublin Rebels. A vital part in the success of the Dublin Rebels both on and off the field.
A hammer of a Fullback in his early years, he later moved to Defensive Line, but has played in almost every position on the field. Following on from his Jersey, number 45, being retired at the end of 2017, Andy takes his rightful place in the Dublin Rebels Hall of Fame.


Hall of Fame Inductee – Andrew Flynn, introduced by Patrick Blood


After all of the proper awards, the night was concluded with our traditional “Funny” Awards, which shall remain in the memory of those in the room, a room that was filled with large belly laughs and a great night.




The Dublin Rebels came into the 2017 season off the back of breaking the Belfast Trojans stranglehold on the Shamrock Bowl. Winning the Championship, by scoring the game winning Touchdown with 12 seconds left on the clock. A first title since 2011, and with the promise of competing for National Championships again, was a big draw in recruitment.

The majority of the 2016 team has returned this year, with notable exceptions, Defensive player of the year Kenny McCarthy not returning, and the retirement of Fergal “Sunday” O’Hanlon. With the already returning squad, a strong rookie class, and the return of some veteran players, including human wrecking ball Simon Mackey, the Rebels would set up for a strong run at attempting to repeat the previous year’s lofty heights.


The opening game of the season brought a trip to UCD, the first meeting in two seasons, the last of which the students came out on top. The Rebels took the victory, with a debut score for RB Pete McMahon, and another rushing touchdown, from Sean Douglas, coupled with receiving Touchdowns from Peter Keely and Cathal Keane thanks to the arm of Andrew Dennehy, the Rebels took home the points, with a final score of 28-13. There were some negatives to the game, as it brought injuries to several key starters on offense, with Wello Omorodion, Sean Leamy and Paul Grogan, all missing future games.

Photo courtesy of Laszlo Gezco Photography


Game two brought the first meeting of this year’s two Shamrock Bowl finalists, when the Carrickfergus Knights came to Dublin. The game was a tight tense affair, with the Rebels offense giving up a plethora of turnovers to the resilient Knights. The game remained scoreless until the fourth quarter, when Simon Mackey provided one of the moments of the season, with the infamous “Swan Lake” play, where he leapt and spun into the Endzone to break the deadlock. The game was capped off with Pete McMahon adding another score to close the game out, 12-0.

The next game up was a trip to Kildare to take on the North Kildare Reapers. The game was notable for the emergence of young signal caller Jack Fagan, given the reigns to the offense, after a brief cameo from starting Quarterback Dennehy. A tough heart-filled performance from the home side, caused problems for the traveling Rebels at times, but in the end would succumb to a 37-0 defeat. Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu would continue his run of games with at least one interception through 3 games. It would also see the rare Defensive Tackle Interception, when Paul Kirkwood snagged one from the air. Scorers on the day were again, Pete McMahon and Sean Douglas(2), a first TD throw from Fagan to Ciarán Fitzpatrick, and a thunderous 30 yard run from Steve Walsh.


Up next for the Rebels, was a road trip to Shamrock Bowl Conference newcomers/returners, the Cork Admirals. The game would see the return of Grogan to the offense, and in what would be more impactful on the day, his punting. As this game turned into a strategic battle, field position came at a premium. The Rebels linebacking corps of Matthias Durot, Conrad Cook, Damien McHale, and Raphael Meyer would all rack up 4+ tackles each. The men in black would come away winners after rushing scores from Pete McMahon, and Dave “Rev” McMahon, as well as one through the sky from Dennehy to Fitzpatrick.

Dave McMahon
“#7 Dave McMahon” – Photo courtesy of Trevor O’Connell

At the half way point of the regular season, the Rebels looked to be in good shape for the second half of the season. With strong performers across the board, a number of key players to return and a record of 4-0, there was a lot to be positive about. Further south, the UL Vikings had really set the pace for this year’s Championship. They also boasted a record of four wins from four games, however could also count massive victories over the Reapers and UCD, 92-0 and 76-6 respectively. Despite travelling to Dublin, for both sides next game, meeting the current champions on their home turf, U.L. had a lot to be confident about. At least one of the teams would lose their perfect record on that day.

The game was an exciting affair for the neutral, as both sides clicked on offense, and after long drives, traded scores, and the lead back and forth. Ultimately it was the visitors and league pace setters, the Vikings that came away with the victory 28-22. A Pete McMahon touchdown, coupled with another “Rev” McMahon Touchdown and one more through the air from Dennehy to Keane would conclude the Rebels touchdowns for the day. A welcome sight for the Rebels was the return of Wello Omorodion, who would also get into the Endzone on a 2 point play. Ultimately this showed that the Rebels weren’t going to have it all their own way, and that the Vikings would be strong favourites to win the Shamrock Bowl at this point of the season.

Sitting at 4 and 1 on the season, with results throughout the league, the Rebels next game at home to Trinity meant that a win would guarantee Play-off football for the Dublin side. The Trinity side, depleted from the team they had earlier in the season, were still in the playoff hunt themselves. The Rebels would come away comfortable winners on the back of a strong running game and mean defence. The game finished 38-12, and made sure of the home teams spot in the play offs.


With two games remaining the Dublin Rebels sat second in the South Division behind the dominant Vikings. Those final two games would be, first against four time Shamrock Bowl winners the Belfast Trojans, and the return game away, to the Vikings. A tougher run in you will not find to end the regular season.

First the visit of the Trojans to Santry. With the scoreboard deadlocked at zero into the 2nd quarter, up stepped Andrei-Vlad Vasilescu, with another pick, this time doing for 6 points. After a forced fumble on the next drive, taken away from the Trojans, Dennehy would go to the air, hitting Jonas D’Agostin Kubis for the touchdown. The experienced signal caller was in scintillating form, connecting with 7 different receivers on the day. 14-0 down the Trojans rallied, and managed to bring the game to a 14-13 score line with a little over a minute left in the game. Needing to win in order to win the Northern division the Trojans had to go for 2. If they were successful it would have left Dennehy and his offense in the same situation as last year’s Shamrock Bowl final, down by 1 with a minute to go. The Rebels defence stepped up though, and the conversion attempt failed. After recovering the onside kick, the Rebels kneeled out the clock to take the win 14-13.

‘Rebels Kickoff Team’ – Photo courtesy of Charmaeducs Photography

And so, to the final regular season game. A meeting with the UL Vikings, in Limerick, the battle to take the division, and the number 1 seed for the play offs. The stage was set for a phenomenal game, the Rebels needed to win by 7 or more points to win the division, the Vikings would take it with any win, a draw, or even a loss by 6 points or fewer.

While the first meeting of the sides in Dublin saw the Rebels rely heavily on the success of their run game, this game would show just how balanced their offense is. With Andrew Dennehy under Center he would take to the air early, and often, connecting with Grogan, Keane, Fitzpatrick and D’Agostin, each on multiple occasions. While the Rebels defence, who had difficulty in the first match up stopping the Vikings O, began to wreak havoc in the back field, led by Linebacker Robert Smith racking up tackle after tackle behind the line of scrimmage, with the ever present support of Matthias Durot, and the beast that is Simon Mackey. Dennehy had himself a day, connecting through the air for three touchdowns and a 2XP, with Fitzpatrick on one touchdown and D’Agostin on the rest, and rushing for one 2XP himself. Those extra points proved to be the difference in the division. As the clock wound down, the Rebels defence found themselves backed up deep in their own redzone with a minute left in the game. After several defiant stops, the Vikings chose to go for the field goal, knowing the 3 points would win the division for them despite the loss. But the Rebels defence was not to be denied, and burst through the Vikings wall to block the field goal, securing the division, home field advantage, the number 1 seed and a Bye into the Shamrock Bowl Semi Final, where they would end up meeting the Belfast Trojans for the second time this season.

The last time the Rebels and Trojans met in a Shamrock Bowl Semi Final, the two teams combined for a total of 104 points, so this game held the air of promise and lots of scores. It did not disappoint.

The Rebels had no intention of letting up and came out firing on all cylinders. Showing the depth of their ability out of the backfield, the Rebels would jump out to a 24-7 lead, with rushing scores from Wello Omorodion, Pete McMahon and Sean Douglas. The Trojans battled back into the game, managing to get as close as 24-20, the Rebels offense dug in, and not to be outdone by his backfield mates, Dave “Rev” McMahon, would punch in the final touchdown for the Rebels. The Trojans managed to get into the Endzone again, with the score at 32-26, and Trojans ball, the game would end when that man Simon Mackey burst through the line and took down the Quarterback. The Rebels were going back to the show. As the current champions, you always have a massive target on your back, and coming through the season with a single loss in making it to the Shamrock Bowl could be considered a great success. But the Dublin Rebels would only be happy to retain their Championship!

Rebels on 3
Pumped up – Photo Courtesy of Laszlo Gezco Photography

The Dublin Rebels headed into their 12th Shamrock Bowl Final, in search of their record 9th National Championship, against old foes the Carrickfergus Knights. If you want to recall how that turned out you can read the game review “here

Title #9 – Photo Courtesy of Terry McCann Photography

By Paul Grogan

Dublin Rebels 2015 Season in Review

Dublin Rebels 2015 Season in Review
The 2015 season saw the Dublin Rebels return to Seapoint RFC for a second season at the ground. The Rebels, well aware of the growing level of play across the IAFL approached the season in transition as new members joined the team with the hopes of adding to the already rich history of Ireland’s most successful American football organisation.

This rejuvenation of the club began with back-to-back challenges against Trinity College and University College Dublin; two university teams widely viewed to be pushing the IAFL forward with their approach to fostering the raw athletic talent of their players. The inexperienced Rebels fell to 0-2 to start the season as new players, players in new positions and injuries weighed heavily on the young squad.

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