February 2020 Nominations
The nominations have closed for the February 2020 Sportsperson of the Month Award with 23 nominations from 18 teams, clubs and schools across 10 different sports and with athletes covering all regions of the county from Rossinver to Leitrim Village, Ballinamore to Drumshanbo and everywhere in between all represented in our list across the three categories.
It’s been a whirlwind month for Manorhamilton’s Muireann Devaney (16) who was a key member of the Irish U17 Women’s Soccer team for their double encounter with Iceland in Waterford she also made her senior Inter County debut with Leitrim won a Schools Connacht Championship with St. Clares Comprehensive.
Another member of that St. Clare’s Championship victory Hannah Johnston (16) made her international debut as she co-captained Ireland U18 Women’s Rugby team in a victory in Scotland, the first time that age group had an Irish selection after a number of years involvement with Connacht and Sligo Rugby.
Trident Swimming Club’s Conor Lanigan (13) made his international debut at the Dave McCullagh International Open in Bangor, Northern Ireland with a personal best of 2:51.83
Kinlough native Teresa Doherty had a fantastic month as the first finisher across the line at the Athletics Ireland Masters Women’s Cross Country Championships and followed that up by leading home the field at the Fran Faulkner 5km in Manorhamilton.
Glencar / Manorhamilton’s Leah Fox scored a total of 4 goals in her first competitive start for the senior Ladies Football team in the National League victory over Antrim. Not bad for the 17 year old student who was taken off after 42 minutes.
Leitrim Hurling has been on the up in recent times and the emergence of a strong Glencar/Manor contingent led by Karl McDermott has been key to that success. His scores helped stem the tide of league defeats with a victory over Cavan to edge towards a league final appearance.
Ballinamore’s Dean McGovern has arguably been Leitrim’s most consistent performer in their Allianz National Football League campaign this year. Despite the 3 defeats during February he contributed some outstanding attacking bursts and some key scores during those clashes.
His Leitrim team mate Diarmaid McKiernan bounced back from his injury in the FBD League Semi Final with a string of impressive performances. His reflex saves and bravery against Cork in particular kept Leitrim in the contest longer than most neutrals would have expected.
While Sligo Rovers have struggled to get to the pace of this season’s SSE Airtricity League Premier Division, Leitrim Village’s Niall Morahan has been a stand out bright spot for the Bit O’Red this month earning the Fan’s Man of the Match award for two of the three opening league games.
After winning the Local Category in these awards last month, Sarah Mulvaney-Kelly has expanded her reach with a 5th place finish in the National Cross Country Championships as well as winning the U14 event at the inaugural Fran Faulker 5km Road Race, in a time which was faster than the bronze medallist in the senior women’s race.
Young Swimmer Miya Mulvey of Trident Swim Club produced two fantastic performances to win silver medals in the 50m Backstroke and 50m Butterfly at the National Finals of the Minor Schools Swimming Championships in the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin.
Drumshanbo Ultra Trail Runner Ricki Wynne has been impressive with his performances in some of the most remote places on the planet in recent years and this month he finished 2nd in the Sli Gaeltacht Muscrai in Cork despite the 120km winds, relentless rain and getting pulled into a river along the route.
Ballinamore Athletics have always been top of the Walk with their Olympic credentials but youngster Mark Ahern is the new face of the discipline in the club finishing 2nd in the U14 walk at the Connacht Indoor Championships just ahead of his clubmate Setanta Gleeson.
Dromahair’s Robbie Cunningham has been pivotal in Manor Rangers rise to the top of the Sligo / Leitrim Superleague table in recent months and in a month where fixture lists were ripped apart by the weather he still managed to get himself on the scoresheet against Junior kingpins Athenry.
North Leitrim AC’s Mark Hazlett took home double honours by winning the U13 60m & 60m Hurdles gold medals from the Connacht Indoor Athletics Championships in Athlone recently.
Leitrim Handball Stalwart Ed Lee of Fenagh Handball Club reached the final of the Connacht Diamond Master’s by beating Pierce Lawlor of Galway before being awarded the title courtesy of a walkover from his Sligo opponent.
Carrick AC’s Alannah McGuinness took home a gold medal from the Connacht Indoors in the U19 200m final to go with her silver in the U19 60m final to reach the All Ireland finals in both events to be held later this month.
Drumshanbo Handball Club’s Ciaran McMorrow secured a Connacht U17 ‘A’ Silver medal after winning his Semi Final, unfortunately an injury sustained in that victory would see him forced to concede the final.
Mohill AC were well represented at the Connacht Indoor Championships with their highest ranked athlete Orla McWeeney finishing 7th in the U14 Shot.
Sibling rivalry can be tough to deal with at the best of times so when sister Sarah won this award last month, Karen Mulvaney-Kelly wanted to go one better and set a new Connacht Championship Record for the U13 1K walk in 5:09 minutes at the Connacht Indoor Championships to earn her own nomination. (Third sister Lara made it a hat-trick with a gold medal in the U18 shot.)
Congratulations to The Poor Scholar Darts Team of Ian Flynn, Michael Hearty, Charlie McDonnell, Denis Dolan, Cyril Og Smith & John Christy who secured the Francis McGirl Memorial Cup beating Quinns of Fenagh 5-3 in the final played this month.
It was third time lucky for St. Clare’s Comprehensive as their Senior Ladies Football team secured the Connacht ‘C’ Championship at the third time of asking beating Gortnor Abbey of Crossmolina in the final.
Also nominated for the second consecutive month, the Junior Boy’s Soccer team in St. Clare’s Comprehensive were took part in the All Ireland Semi Final but their penalty luck ran out losing 4-1 to Gaelcholaiste Luimnigh in Athlone Town Stadium.