From 2001-2005 the Senior Girls Hockey Team won all four Senior A leagues and represented Connacht at the National Finals. The girls won two of their respective leagues in the 05/06 year, unfortunate to lose out in the Semi and Final of the other two competitions.
In the 2005-06 year a Senior B team was submitted for the first time since 1989. The team submitted in 1989 was the first hockey team formed within the Jes and they proceeded to win the competition. The following year they moved up to the A Division. The girls proved themselves worthy yet again, and went on to win the league, defeating Salerno 2-1 in a very close final.
Jes hockey shows great strength for the future as both the U-15 and U-16 teams reached their semi-finals (the Lupton and Griffin Cups respectively), unfortunate to be beaten for a place in the final by their opponents in two very close matches. The first year squad started their time in school strongly as they reached the Final of the Blackmore Shield. They show great promise for the years to come.
In 2008 the Senior team won a well-deserved victory over Taylor's Hill.
The Senior Rugby Team (Jes S) have won the Connacht Schools Senior Cup four times in the last ten years (2002, 2005, 2006 and 2008). In all the school has won the Senior Cup on Ten occasions (1924, 1925, 1927, 1928, 1979, 1985, 2002, 2005, 2006 & 2008) during the competitions ninety-five year (1913 - 2008) history, as well as being losing finalists on several other occasions.
Last year (2006-07) the Seniors lost to Garbally College in the quarter-final 5-6, and in the current season (2007-08) they progressed to the Connacht Schools Senior Cup Final where they met Marist College, Athlone on Wednesday 05th March at the Galway Sportsground. A 10 -7win for the Jes confirmed them as Connacht Schools Senior Rugby Champions for the tenth time in their history, and a remarkable third title in four years.
The Jes S has been very fortunate in recent years to have available a superb collection of players harnessed by the external coaching skills of some of Connacht's best Rugby coaches, including ex New Zealand Schools coach Bernie Kelly. The Jes team has had many of its players on the Connacht (provincial) Schools Team for some time now, and several have received Irish Schools Trials.
The Junior Rugby Team (Jes J) reached the final of the Connacht Schools Junior Cup in 2006 losing to Garbally 12-20. The Junior side have been Connacht Champions on four occasions (1918, 1978, 1981 and 1987) and have been finalists on many further occasions most recently in 1999 and 1989 (records are incomplete).
Famous Former Players
Of the school's more recent players Daniel Riordan, a member of the 2002 Senior Cup winning side is currently a professional rugby player with Connacht Rugby. A Full Back/ Winger he has also represented Ireland at U-21 level participating in the 2005 U-21 Rugby World Cup in South Africa, in a squad containing current Ireland Senior International Andrew Trimble During the tournament Daniel made four appearances scoring four tries, finishing joint fourth in the try scoring list (one behind current Leicester Tigers and England International - Tom Varndell. Ireland only lost two matches during the tournament to South Africa (eventual winners) and France (who finished Fourth; however, due to the unusual structure of the tournament finished ninth (9th) out of twelve participating teams .
Colaiste Iognaid Rowing Club arguably had its most successful year in its history during the 2005/06 season, the women's junior crew won the women's junior eights and fours championships of Ireland (Siobhan Sumption, Sadhbh Ni Cheallaigh, Leah Coughley, Katie Oliver, Jane Foley, Katie Barrett, Grace, Annie McKeon O Donovan and Alicia Griffin) The women's crew also went on to win the Connaught Tribune Team of the year which was the first crew ever C.I.R.C have won such a prestigious award. After the female's side of the club's success at the all Ireland championships 2006 4 oarswomen (Siobhan Sumption, Sadhbh Ni Cheallaigh, Leah Coughley and Katie Oliver) and the coxswain (Alicia Griffin) went on to represent Ireland at the Home Internationals 2006. Also in 2007 another 5 female members of C.I.R.C (Siobhan Sumption, Leah Coughley, Georgina Rushe, Jane Foley and Eavan Collins) went on to represent Ireland at the Home Internationals in Cork and brought home a total of 10 medals between them! A huge success for the Club!! The men were successful too winning men's novice 4's championship of Ireland (Niall Kenny, Luke Smith, Michael Freeney, Edward Fitzgerald and Keith Duffy). Eddie Mullarkey won the junior 15's final by 4 lengths. Niall Kenny and Edward Fitzgerald represented Ireland at the coupe de la junnesse in Amsterdam in a coxless four with Jason Wall from St. Michaels and Stephen Penny. They finished in silver on the Saturday and 4th on the Sunday. The same pair went on to win the junior pairs at the national championships in 2007.
Cormac Folan, an ex-Jes oarsman, has qualified for the Heavyweight Four in the Olympics in Beijing, after finishing 7th in the World Championships last year. Another ex-jes rower, Paul Murray, won gold at the worlds student games in Lithuania. Dominic Burke (Jes rower 95-99) also represented Oxford University in the reserve boat, Isis, at this year's boat race.
Colaiste Iognaid has a rich tradition in debating and it is very much part of the school's identity. The school is possibly the staunchest stronghold of debating in the West of Ireland, with Denny's West of Ireland Final wins in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Colaiste Iognaid has its own debating society which was founded in 2007 by Leah Coclough and Ciaran Garrett, which convenes every week and allows students from all years to debate against each other.
Although the achievements of Jamie Brown, Donncha Lenihan and Leah Colclough set a high standard in recent years, the academic year 2007-08 has seen some of the greatest debate successes for the school in its history. It's fair to say that Coláiste Iognáid nurtures some of the strongest debaters in the country. Although the victory of Ciaran Garrett and Manus Lenihan over every school in Éire in the All-Ireland Debating Competition was perhaps the highpoint of the year, there have been other notable achievements:
The Concern team of Orla Ni Donncha, Jake Hansen-Shearer and Alan Power were led to the Concern National Quarter Finals by their captain Cormac McGuinness. Darragh O’Brien, Leah Colclough and Jake Hansen-Shearer were ‘Denny’s West of Ireland’ Finalists. Ciaran Garrett, Manus Lenihan and Jake Hansen-Shearer were selected as finalists in trials for the Irish Debate Team Ciaran Garrett and Jake Hansen-Shearer were AIB Trinity Finalists. Jessica Hannon was best Junior Speaker (Connacht). Alan Power was selected to represent Ireland in the European Youth Parliament, 2008/2009 Darragh O’Brien won the NUIG Political Society: Public Speaking Grand Final. Gallen Hawkins was third. Cormac McGuinness, Jake Hansen-Shearer : NUIG Mace Finalists. Cormac McGuinness and the Concern team organised a First Year Debate Competition to end the year.
‘Cumann Díospóireachta Choláiste Iognáid’ met twenty-two times over the year. The final motion, ‘That This House Believes That Bertie Ahern Leaves A Positive Legacy’ was successfully proposed.
Ciaran Garrett and Manus Lenihan were runners-up in the Denny’s All-Ireland Schools’ Debating Grand Final on Tuesday 15 th April. Twenty members of the society travelled to Dublin to support the team.
After fending off Connacht schools in the provincial final in March, the Fifth Year students went on to defeat all the teams from Leinster and Munster in the Grand Final in Trinity College, Dublin.
They were narrowly defeated by the team from Ulster.
Garrett and Lenihan missed the top spot by the narrowest of margins. In a split adjudicating panel, the chief adjudicator delivered his casting vote against the Coláiste Iognáid pupils.
Coláiste Iognáid is one of the few non-fee paying schools in the country to have ever achieved such a high placing in this prestigious event.
To conclude the year, TY pupils Cormac McGuinness, Jake Hansen-Shearer, Alan Power and Paddy McLoughlin trained 1 st pupils for the 2008 First Year Debate Championships. 1G (Jack Collins, Ciara Power, Aisling Dunne and Andrew Forde) gained top spot with 1X (Oisin Keogh, Anthony Noone, Siobhan Lenihan and Timmy Molloy) as runners-up. Robert Belone won Best Speaker and Siobhan Lenihan won Runner-up Best Speaker.
The school has been less successful at other sports. It has rarely been able to field football (though this is picking up) or hurling teams in successive years, due to lack of interest and lack of qualified coaches. It has no adjacent playing fields and which puts it at a disadvantage compared to other schools in the city. It has however had very successful Boysgirls Basketball teams with the boys U 19 recently getting to the All Ireland Quarter finals losing to Marist eventual winners and the U 16 Girls narrowly losing to Gortnoor (Laois) only just missing out on the All Irelands, however, on this matter, no one really cares.
St. Ignatius College has a well-regarded music department and stages a musical each year. Most recently it was Smithy which was nominated for ten different categories in a Connaught School's show Award Ceremony..