Byrne strike helps Carlow crush Laois
Carlow 2-25 Laois 2-15
Carlow turned on the style in the second-half to breeze past Laois on Saturday.
The win puts Carlow on course for a place in the final against Westmeath, while Laois are now deep in relegation trouble.
Carlow got the perfect start, with Edward Byrne rifling in a goal after three minutes. Denis Murphy and John Michael Nolan both pointed twice as Carlow led 1-7 to 0-4 after 20 minutes. Laois were then awarded a penalty and Enda Rowland applied the finish as the Laois men rallied before half-time to draw level, the teams tied at 1-9 each at the interval.
Carlow scored three points in the opening six minutes of the half, with Nolan and Murphy (2). Willie Dunphy pointed for Laois. Nolan and Murphy tapped over points before Diarmuid Byrne scored a goal. Carlow then went on a 0-5 to 0-2 scoring run to break the Laois resolve. Ryan Mullaney netted for Laois, but Carlow deserved the win.
Scorers - Carlow: JM Nolan 0-6 (1 sl), D Murphy (f), C Nolan 0-5 each, E Byrne 1-1, P Coady 0-3, D Byrne 1-0, J Doyle, J Kavanagh 0-2 each, K McDonald 0-1 each Laois: S Maher 0-8 (5f, 3 65s), R Mullaney 1-3, E Rowland 1-0 (p), W Dunphy, N Foyle, C Taylor, M Kavanagh 0-1 each
Carlow - B Tracey 6; A Corcoran 7, P Doyle 7, M Doyle 7; D Byrne 7, D English 6, R Kelly 6; J Kavanagh 7, K McDonald 7; JM Nolan 9, P Coady 7, E Byrne 7; J Doyle 6, D Murphy 6, C Nolan 8. Subs: R Smithers 6 for Murphy (55), S Murphy for C Nolan (70), E Redmond for English (72).
Laois - E Rowland 7; J Phelan 7, L Bergin 6, C Stapleton 6; P Lawlor 6, M Whelan 6, R Mullaney 8; J Ryan 6, C Taylor 5; P Purcell 6, N Foyle 6, B Conroy 5; C Comerford 6, S Maher 6, W Dunphy 6. Subs: P McKane 5 for Comerford (h-t), C Dwyer 5 for Taylor (55), M Kavanagh for Foyle (65), A Corby for Purcell (70 mins), J Kelly for Mullaney (70).
Ref - C McAllister (Cork).