Portlaoise 1-11 The Rock 1-10
Laois Shopping Centre IFC quarter-final replay
Portlaoise will play Rosenallis in the Laois IFC semi-final following tonight’s hard-earned replay win over The Rock in Stradbally.
Two late frees from centre-back Jack Browne secured the win for Portlaoise after The Rock had nudged ahead with scores from Aaron Dowling and sub Fionn Kirwin with the game approaching full-time.
While The Rock got the first two points of the game, Portlaoise stormed back into contention to go 1-5 to 0-2 clear by the end of the first quarter – the goal coming from Martin Staunton with Ronan McEvoy, Browne, Craig Rogers and Aaron Rafter all chipping in with points.
The Rock fought back, however, with three points from Aaron Dowling and one from Danny McRedmond and although Staunton and McEvoy – with his third point of the half – kepy Portlaoise ahead, The Rock brought it back to one point at the break thanks to a Tom McDonald goal from a penalty. At half-time Portlaoise were 1-7 to 1-6 ahead.
Craig Rogers pushed Portlaoise two ahead early in the second half but Dowling and Jonathan Allen got The Rock on level terms for the first time since early in the game. Rogers again pointed for Portlaoise from a free to give them the lead again. But Kirwin and Dowling pointed to put The Rock into the lead late on only for Jack Browne to pop up with two points – one to level it and one to win it.
Portlaoise will now play Rosenallis in the semi-final on Friday, September 15, in Portarlington with Emo taking on Timahoe in the other semi-final in Ratheniska the following day.
SCORERS – Portlaoise: Martin Staunton 1-1, Craig Rogers 0-3 (two frees), Jack Browne 0-3 (two frees), Ronan McEvoy 0-3, Aaron Rafter 0-1. The Rock: Aaron Dowling 0-6 (three frees), Thomas McDonald 1-0, Jonathan Allen 0-2, Danny McRedmond 0-1, Fionn Kirwin 0-1
PORTLAOISE: Michael Nolan; Dean Lynch, Colin Finn, Daragh McAuley; Ray Nerney, Jack Browne, Oisin Fitzpatrick; Craig Scully, Paddy Downey; Ronan McEvoy, Craig Rogers, Jason Maher; Aaron Rafter, Martin Staunton, Ross Brennan.
THE ROCK: Conor Allen; Paul Allen, Brendan Murphy, Ciaran Conroy; Anavil Storey, Conor Flynn, Kieran Carroll; Philip Peake, Brian Conlon; Diarmuid Dooley, Stephen McDonald, Danny McRedmond; Aaron Dowling, Tom McDonald, Jonathan Allen