Sars bridging gap of 27 years
Fethard and Clonee also travelling north for big event
While most of the Under-14 hurlers and camogie players in the county will be gradually coming down from the Féile buzz in the coming days, it's only beginning for the Sarsfields footballers who will travel to Cavan to represent Wexford in the national finals this weekend.
Of course, many of them already savoured the experience with Faythe Harriers in hurling, but this will be an extra-special trip for the Butters given that they have worked so hard to earn this singular honour.
There was bitter disappointment last year when they were beaten in the local Féile Peil final by Naomh Eanna, so the joy was equally understandable this time around when they went one better with a victory over Glynn-Barntown to earn qualification.
Sarsfields represented the county at the national event on just one previous occasion - in Galway in 1990 - and in an unusual quirk of fate they will be hosted this weekend by a team they met out west on that occasion: Crosserlough of Cavan.
The Wexford town club will be competing in Group C of Division 3, with their first game in the Ramor United grounds in Virginia on Friday at 6.30 p.m. when they take on Mungret St. Paul's from Limerick who participated in the hurling equivalent last weekend.
They will meet Ramor United immediately afterwards at 7.30 p.m., before facing host team Crosserlough on Saturday at 11 a.m.
Virginia will again be the venue later that afternoon, whether they are in Cup or Shield action, while the semi-finals and finals in both competitions on Sunday are in Derrygonnelly, Co. Fermanagh.
Division 3 also features Derrygonnelly, Enniskillen Gaels, Mayobridge (Down) and St. Brigid's (Roscommon) in Group A, Shamrock Gaels (Longford), Coralstown-Kinnegad (Westmeath), Emyvale (Monaghan) and Truagh (Monaghan) in Group B, and Castleknock (Dublin), Cavan Gaels, Drumlane (Cavan) and Knockavilla-Donaskeigh Kickhams (Tipperary) in Group D.
The Sarsfields squad includes Alex Boggan, Kyle Carroll, Kyle Clancy, Jack Connolly, Callum Corcoran, Jack Corcoran, Luke Cullen-Ryan, Callum Doyle, Eoin Doyle, Tiernan Doyle, Patrick Duignan, Jack Foley, Jake Fortune, Emmet Gahan, Cuán Gallagher, Jason Gordon, Darragh Grant, Eoin Halligan, Eoin Hartigan, Darragh Haughton, Charlie Hynes, Cal Innes, Alex Kirby, Darragh Maloney, Oliver McMahon, Luke Murphy, Darby Purcell, Ethan Ryan, Brandon Tracey, Cillian Twomey, Ben Walsh and Killian Whelan.
Back in 1990 the club reached the last eight in Galway when they were hosted by Kilkerrin-Clonberne and also met Glenamaddy (Galway) and Cavan's Crosserlough in the group stages.
The official panel on that occasion comprised Liam Butler, Colm Byrne, Frank Byrne, Damien Dempsey, Niall Dillon, Graham Donohue, Shane Dunne, Robbie Foley, Brian Furlong, Kieran Kelly, Shane Kinsella, Liam O'Connell, Darren O'Grady, Gary Paige, Ian Roche, Raymond Rossiter, John Sheil, Niall Sheil, Paddy Sheil, Ollie Walsh (R.I.P.) and Enda Whelan.
The Sarsfields sponsors for the trip to Cavan include People Newspapers, Whelan Cleaning Systems Ltd., Boggan Motors, Clayton Whites Hotel, McMahon Building Supplies, McCormack's Chemists and Hanrahan's Supermarket, The Faythe.
Meanwhile, the boys of Fethard, buoyed by their fine Division 5 hurling Cup success on Sunday, will be aiming for the double in Division 7.
They are being hosted by Seán McDermott's of Monaghan whom they will meet on Saturday at 11 a.m., with games against O'Hanrahan's (Carlow) and Patrick Emmets (Monaghan) first on Friday at 4 and 5 p.m. respectively.
Denn in Co. Cavan will be the venue for their games in the knockout section on Saturday afternoon.
The county will also be represented in the Division 3 girls' competition by Clonee who are being hosted by Aghadrumsee of Fermanagh and will also play Aodh Ruadh (Donegal) and Drumlane (Cavan), with all games in Aghadrumsee on Friday at 4 and 5 p.m., and on Saturday at 10 a.m.
They will then travel to Maghera in Cavan either for Cup or Shield action.