Loughmacrory lift All Ireland Feile Cup in Wexford
Loughmacrory girls and boys handball teams produced a fantastic double effort in the All Ireland 60×30 feile competition in Wexford last Sunday.
Both teams reached the All Ireland division one feile finals in Castlebridge against Kilkenny opponents and the girls completed an historic double feile success as they clinched the 60×30 Cup to add to their groundbreaking 40×20 triumph two months ago.
The boys team wasn’t fancied at all because of their young age but they produced a brilliant performance to qualify for the national decider before acquitting themselves superbly against a very talented and experienced Talbots Inch team from Kilkenny City.
The Loughmacrory girls have enjoyed a phenomenal year and in feile captain Laura Duff and Lucy McCullagh they have two of the leading juvenile handballers in Ireland who have captured multiple national titles in 2022.
Teaming up with Aine Curran and Cliodhna Toner, Laura and Lucy displayed their class once again on Sunday as they dismissed the challenges of Lahorna from Tipperary and Kilfane from Kilkenny to take the 60×30 girls feile honours home to Tyrone for the first time.
Loughmacrory were holders of the boys division one feile title from 2019 when Eoin McCullagh, Gary McAleer, Ruairi McCullagh and Thomas Duff were unstoppable, but this year’s team was totally new to 60×30 competition and to the feile stage. But it didn’t stop them from making their presence felt in Castlebridge.
After a slow start to the day they really warmed to the task with an impressive three point win over Kells from Kilkenny to set up a title shootout with the hot favourites Talbots Inch.
Captained by the brilliant Anthony Clifford, the Kilkenny outfit were never in danger of losing but the Lough lads competed admirably in the final before losing out on an aggregate score of 42-18.
The Lough team of Lorcan Meenagh, Ciaran McCrystal, Damhan Meenagh, Micheal McCrystal and team captain Pearse McDonald did themselves proud on the day and will benefit massively from the experience and they are talented lads who can return to feile next year as serious division one contenders.
Overall it was a very successful trip to Wexford for the group of thirty players and supporters from Loughmacrory as the club’s proud feile record was maintained in style.