Craughwell tops on the podium

Craughwell AC won the most medals overall at the recent two-day Connacht indoor championships in Neenagh.

In a clean sweep for Galway, Naomi Whyte of GCH won the girls’ 60m ahead of Emma Reynolds of Loughrea AC and Siobhan McGrath of Athenry. Loughrea’s Emma Reynolds showed remarkable versatility by also winning gold in the 600m, this time ahead of Lydia Doyle of Athenry.

Shane Jennings of Ballinasloe & District AC won the boys u-12 600m in a superb time of 1.51 in a close battle with his Westport rival, while Brandon Lee of Athenry was third.

Tara McNally was a clear winner in the u-15 60m, winning in a fine 8.31, while Cillin Greene of GCH won the boys’ event in 8.14.

Laura Ann Costello was the firm favourite going into her events. The Galway youngster had recently claimed silver at the Aviva England U-15 National Indoor Championships in Birmingham. In what proved a very fast 200 metres, Costello ran the distance in 25.59 seconds to claim the silver medal behind Heather Brier of Wales, who set a new national Wales record and also clocked the third fastest time in England. In the Connacht finals she continued her winning ways, taking both the u-16 60m and the 200m by comfortable margins. Sinead Tracey of Craughwell was third in the 200m.

GCH sprinters Aidan Conneely and Kelvin Olayemi could not be separated by the timing equipment and both jointly awarded gold medal in the 60m sprint in 7.74s. Conneely was also second in the 200m in 25.46. Athenry’s Evan Quirke won bonze in this race.

Alanna Lally was in top form, winning the first of her three golds in the u-17 60m in 8.12, ahead of teammate Roisin Dobey (8.51 ) and Craughwell AC’s Claire Ryder (8.60 ). Dobey and Ryder had another battle in the u-17 200m and on this occasion Roisin Dobey took gold and Claire Ryder took Silver. Allana Lally’s second hold came in the 800m, which she won in 2.29.24 and the versatile harrier completed her hat-trick with a dominant win in the 1500m in a time of 5.02.

Conor Gillen and John Cormican took first and second in the 800m in times of 2.11 and 2.13. It was also 1-2 for Craughwell in the 1500m, this time in-form Nicholas Sheehan stealing the edge over Gillen with a 4.26 win.

It was also gold and silver for Craughwell in the girls’ u-18 60m, where Jessica Heneghan pipped teammate Mairead McCann. Jessica Heneghan also added the 200m gold to complete the coveted sprint double, while Maria McNamara of Craughwell AC ran a time of 46.07 to win the 300m.

Evan McGuire of GCH won the u-18 60m sprint in 7.41, seconds ahead of clubmate Henry Griffin who won bronze in the same race. In the junior u-19 events Katie O’Donoghue of Craughwell won the 60m in a time of 8.20, while Georgina Healy of GCH won Gold in the 400m.

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