Laois 1-11 Kilkenny 6-24
Kilkenny’s first outing of 2018 ended with an utterly convincing 28-point win over Laois in O’Moore Park on Wednesday night as 10 different players got their name on the scoresheet in this Walsh Cup encounter.
A well-taken Paddy Purcell goal in the third minute got the home side off to a good start but an experimental Kilkenny side had any amount of possession in the opening half and goals from Chris Bolger, Conor Martin and Richie Reid helped them to a 3-8 to 1-5 lead at the break.
And Brian Cody’s men continued to dominate the second half – scoring 2-7 without reply in the 10 minutes after the break.
The goals – from John Donnelly and a second from Richie Reid – stretched them further clear. Laois hit back with a couple of nice points but the result was never in doubt and a late long-range goal from sub Seán Morrissey rounded off a tough evening for Laois.
LAOIS: E Fleming; J Phelan, L Bergin, L Cleere; J Kelly, J Ryan, C Stapleton; E Killeen, L Delaney; A Corby (0-2), E Lyons, C Collier (0-1); P Delaney (0-2, two frees), C Dwyer (0-3), P Purcell (1-0).
Subs: D Hartnett for Phelan (32 mins), C Taylor (0-1, free) for Lyons (34 mins), B Conroy (0-1) for L Delaney (34 mins), P McCane for P Delaney (45 mins), M Dowling for Ryan (51 mins), S Dunphy (0-1) for Corby (60 mins), C Phelan for Killeen (60 mins), B O'Mara for Stapleton (65 mins).
KILKENNY: D Brennan; E Cody, R Lennon, S Staunton; E Morrissey, J Lyng, C Browne (0-1); J Maher, P Deegan; J Donnelly (1-1), R Reid (2-2), M Brennan (0-3); A Murphy (0-6, five frees), C Martin (1-6, one free), C Bolger (1-1).
Subs: G Malone (0-1) for Bolger (ht), R Bergin for Cody (ht), L Scanlon (0-1) for Deegan (ht), J Holden for Maher (45 mins), B Sheehan for Murphy (45 mins), S Morrissey (1-2) for E Morrissey (45 mins).
Referee: J Heffernan (Wexford).
Wexford 1-20 Carlow 0-18
Cathal Dunbar’s 55th-minute goal proved decisive as it edged Wexford to a five-point victory over a battling Carlow outfit at Hollymount.
Very little separated the sides through the opening 15 minutes at the end of which the sides were level 0-4 each. Lee Chin and Denis Murphy swapped two points apiece to keep the sides still deadlocked at 0-6 each, before Carlow were reduced to 14 players having Séamus Murphy straight red carded for a wild pull after 30 minutes.
Despite the setback, it was still Carlow who finished the half with two Murphy pointed frees, leaving Wexford leading by the minimum, 0-9 to 0-8 at half-time.
Despite their numerical disadvantage it was Carlow who showed better on the resumption through the accuracy of Murphy’s pointed frees. But with Chin responding for the home side, Wexford lead 0-14 to 0-13 after 48 minutes.
Entering the closing 15 minutes the sides were still level 0-15 each, but Dunbar’s goal at the end of a sweeping move eventually killed off the Carlow challenge with Wexford finishing strongly to gain their opening win of the season.
SCORERS – Wexford: L Chin 0-9 (seven frees), C Dunbar 1-1, H Kehoe, P Morris 0-2 each, S Donohoe, M O'Hanlon, E Moore, A Nolan, C McDonald, J Guiney 0-1 each. Carlow: D Murphy 0-9 (seven frees), J Kavanagh 0-3, D Byrne 0-2, J Kavanagh, C Wall, E Byrne, C Nolan 0-1 each.
WEXFORD: C O'Leary; D Reck, L Ryan, C Firman; S Donohoe, M O'Hanlon, E Moore; L Chin, Joe O'Connor; K Foley, A Nolan, P Morris; H Kehoe, D Dunne, C Dunbar.
Subs: S Murphy for Donohoe (h/t), Jack O'Connor for Nolan (43 mins), W Devereux for Firman (45 mins), C McDonald for Dunne (47 mins), D O'Keeffe for Moore (55 mins), J Guiney for Kehoe (60 mins).
CARLOW: B Tracey; A Corcoran, J Doyle, M Doyle; G Cody, E Nolan, J O'Hara; J Kavanagh, D Byrne; S Murphy, M Kavanagh, E Byrne; D Murphy, C Wall, C Nolan.
Subs: C Foley for E Byrne (52 mins), P Doyle for C Nolan (53 mins), P Abbey for O'Hara (57 mins), A Casey for J Kavanagh (69 mins).
Referee: J O'Brien (Tipperary).
In the night’s other game, Pat Gilroy got his reign as Dublin hurling manager off to a perfect start with a 4-18 to 0-14 win over Meath at Abbotstown.