A new competition in County Antrim began in 1984, the Under 21 Championship. The Shamrocks lost to Rossa at Healy Park in a replay after a draw at Rossa’s ground in Shaws Road, Belfast.
The Senior Hurling Team did not fare any better than the Under 21’s losing to Cushendall in the Championship semi-final in Dunloy and the Centenary Cup to the same opposition this time at Healy Pk.
In 1985 Loughgiel had Senior Feis Cup Triumph recording a fine victory over Cushendall after a replay in Dunloy in the Semi-final. Loughgiel 2-21 Cushendall 2-8. In the Feis Cup Final, the Shamrocks had fifteen points to spare over Dunloy (Holders) in the final in Cushendall. Loughgiel 3-16 Cushendall 2-8.
Corrigan Park was the venue for a quarter-final championship game with St Johns where after a hard game Loughgiel win in the scoreline Loughgiel 2-11 St.Johns 1-8 to take them to a semi-final clash with Rossa, this game too fixed for Corrigan. Loughgiel were fortunate to get a draw in a tense close game. The replay was in Cushendall and this time the Shamrocks made no mistake winning 4-12 to Rossa’s 2-5. Another County final, this time the opposition was Cushendall a team Loughgiel had never met in a final before.
The game was played at Father Maginn Pk, Glenravel but Loughgiel were well beaten at the finish. Loughgiel 1-12 Cushendall 4-13.
Loughgiel had been renovating the old school for clubrooms and the work was just finished, but on this occasion the premises were not used for celebrating.
Loughgiel won the Under 21 Championship in 1986 when they beat Cushendall in the final at St. Patrick’s Park in Ballyvoy. Loughgiel at Healy Park beat Dunloy, who had been dominating the Under 21 competition having won it in 1984 and 1985, in the semi-final. St John’s beat Loughgiel at Dunloy in the Senior Championship by two points. The minors reached the Championship Final but were beaten by Dunloy before a large crowd at Glenravel.
The Feis Cup came to Loughgiel again in 1988 when they beat Ballycastle in the final at Cushendall. The minors went to the County Final but as in 1986 the Dunloy lads won in a good game in Ballycastle. Loughgiel defeating Lamh Dhearg at Dunloy won Feile Na Gael. Loughgiel 7-2 Lamh Dhearg 3-7. P J O’Mullan won the Skills Trophy at Dunloy the same evening.
Loughgiel also won the All County Feile Na Gael in 1989. Cushendall were beaten at home by Loughgiel in a quarter-final tie in the 1989 Senior.
Championship. Dunloy were the next victims this time in the semi-final again at Cushendall, this one by double scores. A rather robust game in the County Final in Casement Park in which five players were sidelined saw the Loughgiel side win the Senior County Championship for the fifteenth time. Sean Paul McKillop won the man of the match award sponsored by the Ballymena Chronicle. Gerry McClory of St Teresa’s was the referee. Before a huge crowd of 5000 Loughgiel won their fourth Ulster Senior Hurling title by beating Portaferry of Down in the final at St Patrick’s Park, Portaferry. In a close exciting match, Loughgiel won by two points. The ‘Four Seasons Cup’ was presented by Mr Brendan McLarnon the vice-president of the Ulster G.A.A to Loughgiel captain, Dominic McKinley. Loughgiel’s quest for another All-Ireland Title began with a hard earned victory over Desmonds of London in a quarter final tie at St Patrick’s Park in Ballyvoy, home of Carey Faughs. The game being switched as Healy Park was unplayable. The sudden death of John McKinley(R.I.P) on the morning of the match meant the Shamrocks lining out without their Captain, Dominic, the team being lead by Paddy McIntyre. Two goals from substitutes Brendan Laverty and ‘Gusty’ Traynor in the second half when Loughgiel had the breeze in their backs helped the Antrim and Ulster Champions to a five point victory. Loughgiel 3-12 Desmonds 2-10. Ballybrown of Limerick travelled north on Sunday 11th February for the All Ireland Semi-Final. Weather conditions were atrocious on the morning of the match, with snow, rain and sleet leaving the pitch in terrible shape. It was a tribute to the ground staff that the game was played at all, the goal-mouths being returfed and covered overnight. Loughgiel played with the breeze and led by seven points to three at half time. The Munster Champions improved in the second half and ran out winners by one point. Loughgiel 0-8 Ballybrown 0-9.