Westmeath claim more silverware with Division 3 success

Westmeath claim more silverware with Division 3 success

Westmeath 1-13 Laois 0-13

In-form Westmeath claimed their second piece of silverware of the season as they finished strong to secure the Allianz NFL Division 3 title.

Jack Cooney's men, who claimed the O'Byrne Cup title in January, trailed by a point with 50 minutes on the clock at Croke Park.

But they reeled off 1-4 without reply in a 14-minute spell to surge six points ahead and the game was all but up.

Ger Egan was terrific for Westmeath in front of 7,649 at GAA headquarters and finished with 1-7 including the game-breaking 60th-minute goal.

Westmeath only led by a point at the time but punished Laois when goalkeeper Graham Brody came racing out of goals and lost the ball around midfield.

David Lynch and Egan added Westmeath points after the goal to leave the 2017 Division champions 1-13 to 0-10 clear with six minutes to go.

Laois finished with three points in a row from Donie Kingston and Evan O'Carroll but ultimately came up short of Westmeath for the second time this season.

Westmeath won by three points when the sides met in Round 4 in February and they'll meet for a third time in 2019 in the Leinster SFC on May 26.

Westmeath led 0-7 to 0-5 at half-time but Laois will kick themselves for their wasteful play, shooting eight first-half wides and six more after the break.

Westmeath captain Kieran Martin spoke of Lee Wallace in his victory speech, the Rochfortbridge club player who is fighting cancer. It's understood that the Laois players collected EUR250 between them before the game and donated it to a fund for the ill Wallace.

Scorers for Westmeath: G Egan 1-7 (0-3f, 0-1m), R O'Toole 0-2, J Heslin, K Martin, R Wallace, D Lynch 0-1 each.

Scorers for Laois: E O'Carroll 0-6 (0-3f, 0-2 45), D Kingston 0-5 (0-2f, 0-1m), E Lowry, M Timmons 0-1 each.

Westmeath: E Carberry; R Wallace, B Sayeh, K Maguire; J Dolan, N Mulligan, K Daly; S Duncan, D Corroon; D Lynch, G Egan, R O'Toole; K Martin, J Heslin, L Loughlin.

Subs: N O'Reilly for Lynch 65, J Halligan for Mulligan 67, T McDaniel for Loughlin 71, D Giles for O'Toole 75.

Laois: G Brody; S Attride, M Timmons, G Dillon; T Collins, C Begley, S O'Flynn; J O'Loughlin, K Lillis; E Lowry, C Boyle, M Scully; D Kingston, P Cahillane, E O'Carroll.

Subs: R Munnelly for Lowry 48, B Carroll for Boyle 48, B Quigley for Lillis 57, P Kingston for Cahillane 57, D O'Connor for Scully 67.

Ref: J Henry (Mayo).

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