Wexford 1-15 Longford 1-13
Points from Ben Brosnan, Ciarán Lyng and Michael O’Regan secured a place in the Leinster semi-final for Wexford after a frantic tie at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park.
Aidan O’Brien’s men looked to have matters in hand for much of the game but a 55th minute goal from Francis McGee breathed life into Longford’s fading hopes.
A Seán McCormack free brought the sides level and Enda Williams put the hosts in front with six minutes left.
But Wexford had the experience to finish the game off, although Longford will rue kicking 13 wides.
The sides were level on two points apiece after a cagey enough start when the lively Lyng found the back of the net in the 12th minute.
Lyng snuck in behind the Longford cover to collect a perfectly-judged kick-pass by Brian Malone into his chest and his side-footed effort flicked off the advancing Damien Sheridan into the corner of the net.
Seán McCormack and Michael Quinn reduced the deficit to a point but Longford were unable to feed McCormack, Brian Kavanagh and Paul Barden sufficiently and indeed McCormack was out in the half-forward line before the interval.
It made no difference, and after Shane Doyle missed a goal opportunity for Longford, Wexford finished with consecutive points from Dempsey, Adrian Flynn and Malone to lead by 1-8 to 0-7 at the interval.
With the elements at their back, Wexford only needed to keep the scoreboard ticking advance to the last four, if they didn’t concede a goal.
They looked very comfortable despite the efforts of veteran Paul Barden, who made his Longford debut the last time they came out on top against the Model County in the championship 15 years ago.
When McGee slid a low shot to the net, the dynamic of the game changed completely but Wexford composed themselves when it counted to progress.
WEXFORD: S Roche, R Tierney, G Molloy, C Carty, M Furlong, B Malone 0-1, A Flynn 0-1, D Waters 0-1, P Byrne, K O’Grady, PJ Banville 0-1, J Holmes, C Lyng 1-5(0-2fs), B Brosnan 0-3(2fs), R Dempsey 0-2. Subs: T Rossiter for Tierney (58), J Tubritt for Holmes (59), Cillian Kehoe for Dempsey (64), M O’Regan 0-1 for Byrne (66)
LONGFORD: D Sheridan, D Brady, B Gilleran, F Battrim, CP Smyth, E Williams 0-1, S Mulligan, J Keegan, M Quinn 0-1, S Doyle, F McGee 1-1, N Mulligan, P Barden 0-3, B Kavanagh 0-2, S McCormack 0-5(4fs). Subs: P Foy for N Mulligan (33), K Diffley for Keegan (47), B O’Farrell for Brady (48), M Hughes for Doyle (52)
REFEREE: D Gough (Meath)