History – Ladies Club
As Gaeilge: Cill Eo
Colours: White & Green
The origins of the Killoe Ladies club dates back to 1980 when the newly formed Ladies club competed against Legan, Dromard, Abbeylara and Colmcille for the inaugural Ladies competition.
Killoe reached the Ladies final in 1980, beating Legan to capture the Anthony Curran Cup by 1-3 to 0-2. The team: 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 the 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 by winning the Drumlish tournament beating the hosts in the final. 1982 saw the launch of the first Senior Championship with Killoe losing out to Longford Slashers in a quarter-final replay. The main success story that year was that of the County team who reached 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 on the agenda in the parish.
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 beginning a long running rivalry with their neighbouring club. The team were: 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. Junior Championship title wins would follow in 1995, 1996 and 1998 (beating Clonguish in all three finals) and Intermediate Championship titles 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 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 they reached the decider again for the third time in four years only to suffer a cruel one point 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 Marian Lynch, Christine Lee, Pat Doherty and team manager Gary Fenelon.
2000 to 2009 – Success & Dominance
In 2001 Killoe ladies captured the Intermediate title hammering Mullinalaghta 4-15 to 0-4 and regained the title two years later defeating Clonguish by a solitary point. This allowed Killoe to compete in the Leinster championship for the first time and after beating St Fintans (Wexford) and St Conleths (Laois) along the way, reached the final against Na Fianna (Dublin) going down by 1-16 to 2-7.
The building blocks of the 1990’s would finally lead to significant success in the new millenium. In 2004, Killoe reached the senior final but again had to settle for second best against Clonguish 2-10 to 2-8. However they did gain some revenge defeating the same opposition by four points to win their first 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 seniors reached the championship final in 2006 against Clonguish and this time they made no mistake romping to an impressive 3-14 to 1-7 victory to claim their very first Senior Championship. The 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, the club claimed its first double of league and championship. Victory in the 2008 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 they 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 were enough to claim the provincial title by 2-8 to 1-8 amidst wild celebrations. After defeating London champions Fr. Murphy’s in Ruislip, Killoe’s 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 they and Clonguish emerged as leading contenders during the latter part of the decade, in more recent years Killoe have emerged as the dominant side in the county wining the league and championship double for four consecutive years from 2010 – 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 the Senior Championship final (v Ballymore) and completing a unique five-in-a-row of Senior Championship titles.
2016 would see the Killoe ladies sweep the boards at senior level with Senior Championship, Senior League, League Cup and Gold Cup success 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 2018. The end of the decade would belong to the underage teams with U14 team winning the Championship of 2020.
Ladies Club History researched and compiled by Colm, John & Paul Devaney