Published 21/08/2013 | 05:44
WHEN half time rolled around on Saturday it looked like a relative shock was on the cards when Laragh lead 1-5 to 0-6 but they were full value for their lead playing a definite system that upset the Knockanana way of playing.
However a strong second half performance from Knockanana kept Laragh to a single score in the second half and one which they will need to repeat in the quarter-final if they wish to progress.
After just 45 seconds on Saturday Laragh took the lead through corner forward Chris Merrigan. Merrigan looked lively in the first half and he kicked his second score in the tenth minute, a point from close range when a goal was on.
Johnny Wybrant levelled the game in the second minute but Laragh were in Arklow to perform and in the first half they did just that and a point from Steve Olohan increased their lead only for Kevin Tyrrell to level the game again.
When Johnny Wybrant produced a beautiful flick to put a teammate in on goal it seemed a three pointer had to result but the chance was spurned and Laragh went straight up the other end and rattled the onion bag with John Nolan completely unmarked close to goal.
Liam McEvoy made a lovely turn for the games next score and Laragh had a clear upper-hand as they lead 1-3 to 0-2.
Knockanana needed to hit back with something positive and they knocked over four points in a row through Gary Bradley, Damien Byrne, Kevin Tyrrell and although Laragh kicked two wides in the meantime Johnny Wybrant grabbed the fourth.
Laragh had the final say of the half though and kicked two points in the 30th minute to give them a two point half time lead at 1-5 to 0-6.
John McGrath did not look like a happy man for most of the first half and to be fair neither did his players and when the second half resumed they meant business.
In the other camp Laragh looked more than happy with their half an hour of work but they needed to keep it up.
The two points Knockanana kicked in the first two minutes of the second half were symbolic as to what was to happen for the duration of the game and although Liam McEvoy did get a point soon after it was the last time his side would do so.
Knockanana got into their stride and Damien Byrne, Kevin Tyrrell, Ronan Byrne and Brandan Doyle all kicked points at their leisure but credit to JP Foley and Darren Flynn who created more than their fair share of attacks too.
A deserving win for Knockanana in the end who advance to the quarter-finals where they face.