Kingston fires Laois to vital victory in relegation battle
Laois 1-13 Longford 0-13
A virtuoso display from Laois forward Donie Kingston saw the O'Moore men claim a much-needed victory over Longford on Saturday night.
Kingston kicked nine points, six of them in the second-half, to help Laois claim the vital win, as they attempt to avoid a second successive relegation. They were good value for the two points, having been much the better team in the second-half, but they still need to beat local rivals Offaly next week to assure themselves of safety.
They will be hoping for a similar display from Kingston on that occasion too, and Laois manager Peter Creedon knows his star forward will be a marked man next week. "He is a top player. If we had him for all the game against Antrim we probably would have won up there as well," he said. "He's going to be marked as well on certain days, so we're going to have to spread the scores around. I think Donie had eight or nine points tonight, David (Conway) got a fantastic goal as well, we finished with 1-13, we were hoping to get to 17 or 18 scores, so we're a little bit behind our target there."
Over in the Longford dressing room, manager Denis Connerton could do little but point to Kingston's display as the major difference between the teams.
"The fact that Donie Kingston was quite outstanding from play, and from placed balls, was a huge difference between the teams," he said. "It was some performance by him."
Longford had started brightly, Larry Moran and Mickey Quinn pointing early to push them into the lead. Kingston led the comeback for Laois, kicking two points to level it. The first-half was tit-for-tat stuff, with two late points for Longford seeing them lead 0-8 to 0-6 at the interval.
Laois dominated the second-half, however, with Kingston hitting four points in a row after half-time, all from frees. Conway blasted home a brilliant goal, and although Evan O'Carroll was shown a red card for the hosts, they hung on for a crucial win.
Scorers - Laois: D Kingston 0-9 (6f), D Conway 1-0, D Strong (45), E Buggie, E O'Carroll, A Farrell 0-1 each. Longford: R Smyth 0-6 (2f), S McCormack 0-2 (2f), L Moran 0-2, M Quinn, J Keegan, D McElligott 0-1 each.
Longford - P Collum 7; D Brady 6, B Gilleran 6, A Farrell 7; D McElligott 6, P McCormack 7, B O'Farrell 6; D Gallagher 6, J Keegan 7; L Moran 8, J McGivney 6, B McKeon 6; R Smyth 8, M Quinn 7, S McCormack 7. Subs: D Masterson 6 for McKeon (h-t), B Farrell for Gilleran (66).
Laois - G Brody 7; D Strong 6, D Booth 6, J Kelly 6; E Buggie 7, C Begley 7, P McMahon 6; J O'Loughlin 6, K Meaney 7; A Farrell 6, D Conway 7, N Donoher 6; P Kingston 6, D Kingston 9, E O'Carroll 6. Subs: J Finn 6 for Begley (54, inj), G Dillon 6 for Donoher (62, BC), D Luttrell for Conway (72).
Ref - J Henry (Mayo).