Laois 2-13 Kildare 3-8
All-Ireland Intermediate Championship Round 3
The Laois Ladies were two point winners over Kildare in Netwatch Cullen Park this afternoon.
Laois needed to win the game by much more in order to progress to the semi finals but their defeat of Kildare knocks them out and sees Clare through to their first semi final since 2016.
Kildare had beaten Clare in Round 1 and were favourites to advance but Laois had other ideas and put in a brilliant performance to win.
Laois got off to a fast start which saw them take an early lead through a brace from Mo Nerney.
Laois had the wind in the first half and they made of the most of it. Laois’ forwards continuously pressed the Kildare defence when they were in possession of the ball. They were finally rewarded for their pressure with as they turned over the kildare defence and Sarah Anne Fitzgerald blasted the ball over the bar.
Kildare waited until the sixteenth minute before they got on the scoresheet as Roisin Byrne pointed to reduce the deficit to four points.
Laois soon replied with two points in a row through Rachel Williams and Nerney to extend their lead.
Nerney, Andrea Moran and Emma Lawlor then combined for Leah Tarpey to smash the ball into the back of the net.
Laois had another great chance to add another goal to their tally as Laura Nerney split the kildare defence open and laid the ball to Emma Lawlor. Lawlor’s effort struck the crossbar and the ball fell to Nerney but she kicked her effort wide.
Lawlor and Lara Curran swapped points before half time to see eight points between the sides at the break – 1-8 to 0-3.
Sarah Anne Fitzgerald recieved a yellow card on the resumption and Kildare took full advantage of their extra player as they scored their first goal of the game.
A high ball was played into the Laois defence and Nessa Dooley won the ball. She popped it off to Roisin Byrne and Byrne smashed it into the net.
Laois began to struggle to win their own kickouts and Kildare kicked two points in a row via Lara Curran and Grace Clifford.
Kildare then scored two goals in quick succession to see Kildare take the lead to give them a point lead – 1-11 to 3-6. Kildare follwed the goals up with two points in a row to extend their lead.
However, Sarah Anne Fitzgerald blasted the ball into the back of the net to level the game. Nerney and Ellen Healy scored two crucial points to give Laois the lead to ultimately see them beat Kildare.
SCORERS – Laois: Mo Nerney 0-8 (two frees), Sarah Anne Fitzgerald 1-1, Leah Tarpey 1-0, Emma Lawlor 0-2 (one free), Rachel Williams 0-1, Ellen Healy 0-1
LAOIS: Eimear Barry (Shanahoe); Clodagh Dunne (Ballyroan), Jenny McEvoy (Sarsfields), Amy Potts (St Brigid’s); Rachel Williams (Sarsfields), Laura Nerney (Foxrock-Cabinteely), Jane Moore (St Brigid’s); Ellen Healy (Portlaoise), Anna Healy (Park-Ratheniska); Leah Tarpey (Sarsfields), Sarah Ann Fitzgerald (Portlaoise), Orla Hennessy (Timahoe); Emma Lawlor (St Paul’s), Andrea Moran (Ballyroan), Mo Nerney (Timahoe). Subs used: Mags McEvoy (43), Clare Conlon (50), Sarah Larkin (60).
KILDARE: Mary Hulgraine; Rachel Cribbin, Lara Gilbert, Shauna Kendrick; Sarah Munnelly, Grainne Kenneally, Laura Murtagh; Ellen Dowling, Erica Burke; Niamh Sinnott, Lara Curran, Aoife Rattigan; Grace Clifford, Neasa Dooley, Roisin Byrne.
Referee: Eamon Moran