Carlow find form to dent Laois hopes
Carlow bounced back from their surprise opening-round defeat by Down to claim a four-point win at O'Moore Park, putting a serious dent in Laois's promotion hopes.
Neil Foyle presented Laois with the perfect start, striking for a goal in the third minute, but Carlow overpowered them for the next 30 minutes.
Midfielder Eoin Nolan pointed from long range soon after Foyle's effort to spark a run of eight unanswered points, as Laois looked bereft of ideas.
Nothing they tried seemed to work, and for every mistake they made, there was a Carlow player on hand to swoop in for possession and punish them on the scoreboard.
Paudie Kehoe and Craig Doyle scored nine points between them in the first half, but Laois gave themselves a glimmer of hope late in the half.
John Brophy controlled a long free from Matthew Whelan to fire an unstoppable shot to the roof of the net, and points from Willy Hyland (free) and Owen Houlihan had them just about in it, with the half-time score reading 0-15 to 2-3 in favour of Carlow.
Laois enjoyed a good start to the second half, hitting three points on the trot to leave themselves just three behind.
Carlow stretched that out to five, but Laois were proving stubborn opposition and had the gap back to three with 15 minutes to go.
That would be as close as they would get though, as Carlow stood firm in the face of late pressure to win by four points.
Man of the Match -- Craig Doyle (Carlow).
SCORERS -- Carlow: P Kehoe 0-8 (7f, 1 '65'), C Doyle 0-5, A Gaule 0-2, D Shaw, B Doyle, E Nolan, E Byrne, A McDonald 0-1 each. Laois: J Brophy 1-1, W Hyland 0-3 (2f, 1 '65'), N Foyle 1-0, N Costelloe, O Houlihan 0-2, M Whelan (1f), B Dunne 0-1 each.
CARLOW -- K Kehoe 6; J O'Hara 6, A Corcoran 7, D Shaw 6; B Doyle 6, D Kavanagh 6, R Coady 6; E Nolan 6, J Kavanagh 6; P Kehoe 7, M Brennan 7, C Doyle 8; A Gaule 6, E Byrne 7, A McDonald 6. Subs: S Kavanagh 7 for O'Hara (h-t), K McCabe 6 for Shaw (56), C Clancy 6 for C Doyle (58), R Dunbar 5 for McDonald (67).
LAOIS -- E Reilly 6; JA Delaney 6, D Maher 6, B Stapleton 5; J Fitzpatrick 6, M Whelan 6, B Campion 6; C Dunne 5, S Bourke 5; B Dunne 6, N Costelloe 6, W Hyland 5; J Purcell 5, N Foyle 6, J Brophy 7. Subs: O Houlihan 6 for C Dunne (27), T Fitzgerald 6 for Bourke (44), B Reddin 5 for Purcell (65).
Ref -- A Kelly (Galway).