Second-half blitz enough for Faithful
Offaly 1-13 Wicklow 2-9
Published 05/05/2016 | 02:30
A goal and seven points without reply in the first 15 minutes of the second half turned a five-point deficit into a five-point lead for Offaly to help them advance.
Wicklow started brightly with points from Daragh Fitzgerald and Dan Kelly and Conor Byrne's cracking goal was no more than they deserved with a 1-6 to 0-5 lead at half-time.
The second half was more even but a Cian Johnson goal, assisted by the roaming Ronan Hynes, on 39 minutes turned the tie for Offaly.
Michael Mooney and wing-back Hynes also kicked over two long-range points each as Offaly turned the screw.
Wicklow couldn't find good passes into the forward line, though Dan Kelly gave his side a lifeline with a fine 49th-minute penalty.
It set up an exciting finish as Wicklow pressed for a goal, but it never materialised and the Offaly defence held firm.
Scorers - Offaly: C Johnson 1-4 (0-2fs), C Lynam 0-3 (1fs), M Mooney, R Hynes 0-2 each, C O'Neill, S O'Brien 0-1 each. Wicklow: D Kelly 1-5 (1-0 pen, 0-3fs) , C Byrne 1-0, D Fitzgerald 0-2, J McCall, C O'Shea 0-1 each.
Offaly - B Rohan 7; D Norris 7, D Kavanagh 7, J Quinn 6; R Hynes 8, S Geoghegan 7, D Molloy 7; M Mooney 8, S Molloy 7; E Farrell 6, C O'Neill 6, A Delaney 7; C Johnson 8, S O'Brien 7, C Lynam 8. Subs: D Fleming 7 for C O'Neill (45), L Mangan Gavin 6 for D Molloy (51), D Bodsy 7 for M Mooney (56), S Farrell 7 for J Quinn (58), R Galbraith 7 for E Farrell (62)
Wicklow - M Jackson 7; T Kearns 6, T Maher 7, A Curran 6; J McCall 7, S Kearon 7, J Cotter 6; J Bellamy 7, C Kelly 7; C O'Shea 7, C Byrne 7, D Fitzgerald 7; C Kelleher 6, D Kelly 8, J Kelly 7. Subs: F O'Shea 7 for J Cotter (36), C O'Shea 7 for A Curran (40), A Boland 7 for D Fitzgerald (44), R Kelly 7 for J Bellamy (44), C O'Flaherty 7 for C Kelleher (56)
Ref - D Moore (Laois)