Brought to you in association with Telfords Portlaoise
Laois 4-6 Kildare 1-17
Eirgrid Leinster U-20 Football Championship Round 1
Kildare substitute Brian McLoughlin led his side to a dramatic comeback to edge out Laois tonight.
Four Laois goals had them eight points up with 20 minutes to play but Kildare came back to break Laois hearts – with McLoughlin firing six points in that period.
Kildare played with the breeze in the first half and took an early lead via Jimmy Hyland.
Darragh Ryan moved Kildare further ahead but Laois opened their account after seven minutes via Diarmuid Whelan.
And Laois were ahead after ten minutes. James Kelly was the architect as his high ball found Evan Lowry who finished low to the net.
Kildare got the next five points though via Paddy Woodgate, Tony Archibold and Jimmy Hyland to go three clear by the 26th minute.
But Laois finished the half with a flourish. Peter Kealy created a goal for Diarmuid Whelan and James Kelly then landed a screamer to leave it 2-2 to 0-7 at half time to Laois.
The O’Moore men made a brilliant start to the second half as James Phelan charged forward and fed Evan Lowry who rattled the net again.
Sub Alan Kinsella edged Laois further clear and then they had another goal via Diarmuid Whelan thanks to David Connolly this time.
Whelan kicked Laois eight clear but the gap was down to one with 10 minutes to play.
Brian McLoughlin, Sam Doran and Jimmy Hyland reeled off points before a Hyland goal set up a dramatic conclusion.
Evan Lowry scored a crucial point for Laois to lift the siege but Kildare hit straight back via Hyland.
Brian McLoughlin then reeled off two more points to move Kildare ahead as we entered injury time.
Diarmuid Whelan looked to have snatched a draw two minutes into injury time but it wasn’t to be as McLoughlin and then Jimmy Hyland kicked the winning scores for Kildare.
Laois must now beat Wicklow next Monday to keep their hopes alive.
SCORERS – Laois: Evan Lowry 2-1, Diarmuid Whelan 2-3, James Kelly 0-1, Alan Kinsella 0-1 Kildare: Jimmy Hyland 1-6, Brian McLoughlin 0-6, Paddy Woodgate 0-2, Sam Doran, Niall Murphy and Darragh Ryan 0-1 each
Laois: Matthew Byron (Courtwood); James O’Connor (Timahoe), Diramuid Bennett (Portarlington), Richie Hitchcock (Park-Ratheniska); Conor Brennan (Ballyroan-Abbey), Shane Bolger (Kileshin), Seán O’Flynn (Courtwood); James Kelly (St Joseph’s), Eoin Dunne (Rosenallis); David Connolly (Ballyfin), Peter Kealy (St Joseph’s), James Phelan (The Heath); John Kavanagh (Portlaoise), Diarmuid Whelan (Ballyroan-Abbey), Evan Lowry (Killeshin). Subs: Alan Kinsella (Courtwood) for Kavanagh (ht), Rob Tyrell (Camross) for Dunne (45mins), Ronan Coffey (Portarlington) for Kealy (50mins), Dean Brophy (St Joseph’s) for Brennan (60mins), Caomhan Brennan (Arles-Kilcruise) for Phelan (60mins)
KILDARE: Aaron O’Neill; Stephen Comerford, Mark Dempsey, John O’Toole; Mark Barrett, Jason Gibbons, Ruadhan O’Giollain; Aaron Masterson, David Marnell; Paddy Woodgate, Sam Doran, Tony Archbold; Jimmy Hyland, Niall Murphy, Cian Costigan. Subs: Jack Barrett for Ryan (29mins), DJ Earley for Woodgate (37mins), Brian McLoughlin for O’Toole (37mins), Jack Bambrick for Comerford (41mins), Shane O’Sullivan for Marnell (47mins), Padraig Nash for Murphy (51mins).
Referee: Barry Tiernan (Dublin)