Deane stops the rot for nervous Rebels
Cork 1-12 Tipperary 0-12
Ruairi Deane was the hero for Cork as he fired home the decisive score to give the Rebels their first win of the season and a lifeline in avoiding the drop to the third tier for the first time.
Manager Ronan McCarthy will be hoping they can now push on after holding off a spirited Tipperary revival in front of just 1,179 fans. Deane's goal, set up by Sean Powter, pushed Cork six points clear with four minutes remaining but they still had to endure a nervous finish.
The home side cut the deficit in half with three points in rapid succession but Cork held off a frantic scramble for an equalising goal through six minutes of injury-time.
Tipp had started well against the breeze thanks to a couple of Conor Sweeney frees but by half-time Cork led by 0-7 to 0-4, with Luke Connolly leading the way and Paul Kerrigan pointing from 35 metres. Cork pushed on from there and doubled their lead in the opening nine minutes of the second half, with Connolly kicking two more and Cillian O'Hanlon adding another.
Mark Collins made it 0-11 to 0-4 before Sweeney got Tipp's first score of the second-half after 49 minutes.
Sweeney followed with another point and Kevin Fahey cut the gap to 0-11 to 0-7 going into the final quarter, but Deane's goal gave Cork the cushion they needed.
Laois 0-14 Longford 0-12
Laois kept their Division 3 promotion hopes alive with a hard-earned win. The hosts had to dig deep, having trailed at half-time despite playing with the aid of a considerable breeze.
They never threatened to stretch clear in that first half. While they led by 0-6 to 0-4 after 20 minutes — with Evan O’Carroll and Ross Munnelly prominent — Longford kicked the next four and led 0-8 to 0-7 at the break. Midfielder Darren Gallagher hit three points in the first half for Longford and they deserved their advantage at the midway point.
Despite facing into the elements in the second half, Laois reclaimed the lead in the 58th minute when O’Carroll drilled over a ‘45’. Longford replied when Darragh O’Doherty punched over but Laois regained the lead when O’Carroll swung over an inspirational score.
Longford were dealt a blow when sub Joseph Fagan was sin-binned and Laois made sure of the win thanks to a fine point from Eoin Lowry.
Both sides remain in promotion contention with two rounds to go, with Laois away to Offaly in two weeks’ time and Longford at home to basement boys Sligo.
Down 2-12 Offaly 0-10
Two second-half goals from sub Cory Quinn helped Down to a fourth straight win, enhancing their promotion prospects from Division 3.
Down led 0-8 to 0-6 at the interval but the home side dominated the second half, with Donal O’Hare teeing up Quinn for the opening goal after 53 minutes.
That opened up a 1-10 to 0-7 lead and in stoppage time, Quinn added a second goal on the break to push Offaly down into the relegation places.
Bernard Allen and O’Hare both hit 0-6, Allen’s all from frees, but the loss of Shane Horan — who scored two good points early on — to injury early in the second half weakened Offaly.
Caolan Mooney nailed two points from play early on, while O’Hare scored a cracker. Down scored three of the four points before the break, through Kevin McKernan and O’Hare. Horan scored Offaly’s only points from play in the first half, with Allen’s four frees keeping them in touch.
Offaly struggled with the wind at their backs in the second half with Allen missing a couple of frees.
Carlow 1-10 Louth 0-12
Carlow inflicted a second league defeat on high-flying Louth to ease their relegation worries. Sean Gannon got the goal early on.
Sunday Indo Sport