High five for Donore in All-Ireland Schools

DONORE Harriers’ team of six athletes accounted for five medals, including three gold, one silver and one bronze, in the All-Ireland Schools Track & Field Championships in Tullamore on Saturday.

Moyle Park College student Louis O’Loughlin won a dramatic Senior Boys 800m race in which pre-race favourite Cian McPhillips (Moate CS) and O’Loughlin played a waiting game behind James Dunne (Tullamore College), Aaron Mangan (St Mary’s Edenderry) and Ben Deasy (St Flannans).

Louis OLoughlin 060619

With a little more than 200m remaining, McPhillips sped to the front while O’Loughlin got boxed in, but after checking his stride, the Donore athlete gave chase and drew side by side with the leader by the closing 20 metres.

McPhillips was unable to hold off his pursuer, as O’Loughlin (1.52.47) secured victory after a superb closing lap of 54 seconds.

David Slupko also topped the podium in the Senior Boys 110m Hurdles despite clipping most of the ten barriers.

Still he remained upright to finish well clear of his opponents, most of whom struggled with their hurdling technique.

The margin of the win highlighted the depth of errors as Troy McConville (Newtownards) was 10 metres adrift in second place in 15.75 and Ethan Williamson (Portadown College) a distant third in 19.04.

Abdel Laadjel ran a measured One-Mile race in the Under 16 division to claim his first national title.

Paul Delahunty (Temple Carrig) and Matthew Beveridge (Coleraine Grammar) took turns in the lead as Laadjel waited behind the leading group over the initial three laps.

With 300m remaining the Kishoge Community College student edged forward, taking the lead before then stretching away from his rivals.

In the Senior Boys 400m Jack Raftery ran a very balanced race to finish runner-up in 49.42.

Lara O’Byrne, representing St. Joseph’s Lucan, also left it late to win a bronze medal in the Senior Girls 100m Hurdles contest, edging out Kate Rose Barry of Loreto Stephen’s Green in what was a reverse of how these two girls placed in the Leinster Schools Final.

Keri Noonan (Institute of Education) secured fifth place with her final throw of 43.48m in the Intermediate Girls Hammer.

And Ashling Nyhan ran a strong third leg for the Mount Sackville 4x100m Junior Girls team that won bronze medals.

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