Tuesday 20 March 2018

Laois show their mettle to claim Armagh scalp

Laois 1-13 Armagh 0-15

Donie Kingston, Laois, battles against Charlie Vernon of Armagh. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile
Donie Kingston, Laois, battles against Charlie Vernon of Armagh. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile
Armagh's Stefan Campbell attempts to win possession of the ball ahead of Gareth Dillon, Laois. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

A fusion of a frenetic work-rate, indomitable courage and generous ration of skill took Laois to a hard-earned win over Armagh in Division 2 last night.

Stefan Campbell potted three points for the home team in the first eight minutes, but Laois, with Kieran Lillis imposing at midfield and Donie Kingston deploying his experience and craft up front, grew in cohesion and confidence as the match progressed.

And after Evan O'Carroll and Kingston had landed points, Laois went in front in the 14th minute when Paul Cahillane was hauled down as he surged through, and picked himself up to smack home the resultant penalty.

At 1-2 to 0-3, Laois began to call the shots and after substitute Matthew Campion and Armagh's Micheal McKenna traded points, the visitors upped the tempo to garner points from Cahillane, Kingston and Walsh to ease into a more comfortable position at 1-6 to 0-5.

Armagh missed a glorious chance to regain a stronger foothold in the game when Colm Watters saw his thunderous drive acrobatically deflected onto the bar by Laois goalkeeper Graham Brody in the 31st minute and when Kingston hit his third point, the visitors enjoyed a 1-7 to 0-6 lead at the interval.

Armagh, with Campbell and McKenna each plundering a brace of points, staged a strong fightback in the second half.

They laid siege to the Laois posts for a spell but when Kingston and O'Carroll landed crucial points for the visitors, the Orchard County were eventually forced to bow the knee, even though Laois lost Jamie Farrell to a red card.

Scorers - Armagh: S Campbell 0-6 (4f), M McKenna 0-3, G McParland 0-2 (f), A Forker, N Grimly, S Heffron, E Rafferty 0-1 each. Laois: P Cahillane 1-2 (1-0 pen 1f), D Kingston 0-5 (3f), E O'Carroll 0-3, G Walsh (f), M Campion, N Donoher 0-1 each.

Armagh: N McNeice; S Heffron, C Vernon, R McCaughley; S Forker, A Forker, M Shields; A Findon, N McConville; S Campbell, M McKenna, S Sheridan; C Watters, C O'Hanlon, G McParland. Subs: E Rafferty for McConville (half-time), E McVerry for McParland (47), N Grimley for Sheridan (50), J McElroy for S Forker (60), Oisin MacIomhair for Watters (61), S Connell for McCaughley (68). Cards: Yellow: Vernon (27), A Forker (69). Black; Grimley (62).

Laois: G Brody; R Kehoe, M Timmons, D Seale; D Strong, P Cotter, G Dillon; K Lillis, K Meaney; J Farrell, D Kingston, N Donoher; P Cahillane, E O'Carroll, G Walsh. Subs: M Campion for Meaney (17), D O'Connor for Strong (54), D O'Reilly for Walsh (55), R O'Connor for Campion (57)

Referee: B Cassidy (Derry).

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