History – Ladies Club
Ainm: Cill Eo
Colours: White & Green
The Killoe Ladies club was founded in 1980 and competed against Legan, Dromard, Abbeylara and Colmcille for the inaugural Ladies competition (aka the Senior League with Anthony Curren cup for the winner). Killoe reached the Ladies final in 1980, beating Legan to capture the Anthony Curran Cup by 1-3 to 0-2. The team was: Aine McGuire, Roisin McGuire, Anne Bratton (c), Jacqueline Quinn, Josephine Reynolds, Geraldine Brady, Marie Bracken, Mary Bratton, Patricia Morgan, Ann McGoldrick, Helen Gray, Ann Thompson, Mae Fealy, Patricia Monaghan, Teresa Morgan. The management team included Terry McCormack, Tony Bracken and Colm O’Donnell.
The success of that inaugural league led to an explosion of interest in Ladies football with 16 clubs registering for the 1981 competition making Killoe’s task at retaining the title all the more difficult. They did make it through the group and into the semi-finals before losing out to Longford Slashers. The year did end on a high note with Killoe winning the Drumlish tournament, beating the hosts Éire Óg (now St. Helens) in the final. 1982 saw the launch of the first Ladies Senior Championship with Killoe losing out to Longford Slashers in a Quarter Final replay. The main success story that year was the County team reaching the Leinster Final with Killoe footballer Mary Bratton as captain.
By 1983, Killoe were beginning to struggle for numbers as many of their players were involved with exams at different levels. The decision was made early that year to pull out of all competitions. It would be another eight years before Ladies football would be back in Killoe.
1990 to 1999 – A Club Reborn
In the 1990’s, Killoe re-emerged as one of the leading ladies clubs in the county and a strong focus on underage development set the stage for the successful teams of the late 1990’s and beyond. The club was reformed in 1991 after being inactive since 1983 and the first signs of progress came in 1993 by reaching both the 13-a-side and 9-a-side league finals losing both to St Helen’s. Success came in 1995 with a Senior 'B' Championship beating Clonguish 1-12 to 1-7 and again in 1996 defeating the same opposition 4-4 to 0-9 and beat Clonguish again in the 1998 decider which by then had been renamed the Junior Championship. The 1995 team was: Patricia Lynch, Tracy Rehill, Claire Farrell, Deirdre Rehill, Maria Doherty (c), Michelle Carrigy, Caitriona McDonald, Jennifer Hennessy, Claire Kiernan, Amanda Lennon, Aileen Devaney, Sharon Treacy, Aoife Doherty, Helen Reilly, Marie Carrigy. Killoe moved up the ranks from Junior to Intermediate and went on to win the Intermediate Championship in 2001 and 2003.
A first Senior Championship final appearance in 1997 ended in defeat to a strong Ballymore side by 5-10 to 3-6. That same year saw the county team win the All-Ireland Junior Championship title with four Killoe players in the team in the squad - Laura Doherty, Jennifer Hennessy, Carmel Hennessy and Patricia Lynch. 1999 saw Killoe reach the Senior Championship final only to lose out to Ballymore while the following year Killoe reached the decider again, for the third time in four years, only to suffer a cruel one-point defeat to Rathcline by 3-4 to 2-6.
The rebirth of Ladies football in Killoe in the 1990’s had much to do with the dedication of a small core group of people, including (but not limited to) Marian Lynch, Christine Lee, Pat Doherty and team manager Gary Fenelon.
2000 to 2009 – Success & Dominance
In 2001 Killoe captured the Intermediate title beating Mullinalaghta 4-15 to 0-4 in the decider, and regained the title two years later defeating Clonguish by a solitary point. This allowed Killoe to compete in the Leinster Intermediate Club Championship for the first time and Killoe reached the Leisnter IFC final having beaten St. Fintans (Wexford) and St. Conleths (Laois) along the way. Na Fianna (Dublin) proved too strong in the final, with Killoe losing by 1-16 to 2-7.
The building blocks of the 1990’s would finally lead to significant success in the new millennium. In 2004, Killoe reached the Senior Championship final but had to settle for second best against Clonguish 2-10 to 2-8. However they did gain some revenge by defeating the same opposition by four points to win their first Senior League title since 1980. Underage success was very much prevalent during these years with five Minor Championships in a row between 2001 and 2005 as well as U-16, U-14 and U-13 championships with many of these players helping to shape the senior team for the rest of the decade. The Senior team reached the Championship final again in 2006 and again against Clonguish, but this time they made no mistake romping to an impressive 3-14 to 1-7 victory to claim their very first Senior Championship title. That historic team included: Louise Clarke, Maggie Brady, Antoinette Brady, Claire Kiernan, Helen Carrigy, Marie Carrigy, Laura Gallagher; Elizabeth Brady, Edel Quinn, Ann Marie Bratten, Sabrina Hackett, Alison Kenny, Anna McDonnell, Caroline McCormack, Sharon Treacy (c), Therese Brady, Niamh Devaney, Jacinta Brady, Doireann Fox, Maree Kiernan, Ita Glennon, Orla Toher, Martha Reilly, Siobhan Sorohan, Ann-Marie Molloghan.
Two years later in 2008, the club claimed its first Senior League and Championship double. Victory in the Senior Championship final was sealed with goals from Beanie Hackett (2) and player-of-the-match Edel Quinn who finished with a personal tally of 1-7. Final score 3-9 to 0-7. In the Leinster Intermediate Championship Killoe accounted for Rhode (Offaly) and Foxrock/Cabinteely (Dublin) to reach the Leinster final against Railyard (Kilkenny). Despite trailing 1-3 to 0-0 early on, goals from Sharon Treacy and Orlaith Doherty either side of the break and a strong finish yielding five unanswered points proved enough to claim the provincial title for the very first time by 2-8 to 1-8, amidst wild celebrations. After defeating London champions Fr. Murphy’s in Ruislip, Killoe’s All-Ireland odyssey came to an end in Cork to Ballingeary/Inchigeela after extra time bringing to a close a magnificent year for this highly talented group.
2010 to 2019 - Success & Rebuilding
While Killoe and Clonguish shared the spoils as leading contenders during the latter part of the 2000's, the 2010's saw Killoe emerge as the dominant forve in the county, winning the Senior League and Championship double for four consecutive years from 2010 to 2013, along with back-to-back Gold Cup (9-a-side) victories and a Leinster League title in 2013.
In 2014 this successful group of players would retain the Gold Cup and win the new League Cup title en route to contesting and winning the Senior Championship final (vs Ballymore) and completing a unique five-in-a-row of Senior Championship titles, becoming the first Longford club to achieve this feat.
2016 saw Killoe sweep the boards at Senior level with Senior Championship, Senior League, League Cup and Gold Cup successes to consolidate the position of the Killoe Ladies Senior team as the most successful Ladies GAA team in Longford. In the years that followed the Senior side would continue to capture League and Gold Cup titles in 2017 & 2018 including a 3-in-row of Gold Cup victories in 2016, 2017 & 2018. The end of the decade would belong to the underage teams with the U-14 team winning the Championship of 2020.
Ladies Club History researched and compiled by Colm, John & Paul Devaney