Waterford footballers were eliminated from the Championship, after they suffered an 18-point defeat at the hands of Westmeath, in TEG Cusack Park, Mullingar.
This was Westmeath’s first victory in the qualifiers since 2012 and they were impressive in victory with Jack Cooney’s side leading from start to finish.
Waterford were very poor on the other hand and did not score for the first 23 minutes and the visitors only managed to score one point in the first half.
Westmeath can be relatively optimistic ahead of the round two of the qualifiers, although there is still room for improvement for the Lake County.
They were flat against Laois in the Leinster Championship, though they were a different animal on this occasion and Cooney will be delighted with the manner of the victory.
It was the home side who opened the scoring in the 9th minute courtesy of Ronan O’Toole, before Ger Egan doubled his sides advantage.
Scores from Joe Halligan and Egan followed as Westmeath held a 0-4 to 0-0 lead with 15 minutes played.
Westmeath registered the next two points with Egan and Tommy McDaniel finding the target before Tommy Prendergast finally opened his sides account with a point in the 24th minute.
Westmeath responded well scoring the last three points of the first half, as Westmeath held a 0-9 to 0-1 lead at the interval.
Waterford needed a strong start to the second half and it was forthcoming, as Benji Whelan’s side registered the first three scores of the half to reduce the deficit to five points.
All their good work was effectively cancelled out however, as the home team responded with three points of their own to restore their eight point advantage.
Denis Corroon added a further score for Westmeath, as his side led by nine points heading into the final quarter and Waterford were very much up against it at this stage and a fisted score from Joe Halligan stretched his sides lead to ten.
The game was dead as a contest when Ronan O’Toole found the net for the games first goal, with his 55th-minute effort beating the goalkeeper at the end of an excellent attacking move from Westmeath.
Westmeath pushed on for a comfortable 18-point victory after the goal, though tougher tasks await Cooney’s charges in the following rounds, with Mayo and Tyrone among the teams they could be drawn against tomorrow morning
G Egan (0-8) (6 frees), R O’Toole (1-2) (1 '45), J Halligan (0-4), K Martin (0-2), T McDaniel, R O’Toole, R Wallace, J Dolan, D Lynch, D Corroon (0-1 each)
T Prendergast, C Murray, D Hutchinson (0-2 each), D Fitzgerald (0-1)
E Carberry; F Boyle, K Maguire, B Sayeh; D Lynch, R Wallace, K Daly; D Corroon, K Martin; J Dolan, R O’Toole, C McCormack; T McDaniel, J Halligan, G Egan.
J Smith for Boyle (55), N Mulligan for Corroon (57), S Pettit for McDaniel (61), N O’Reilly for Egan (63), C Slevin for Lynch (64), S Flanagan for Pettit (69)
P Hunt; S O’Donovan, R O Ceallaigh, J McGrath; B Looby, S Ryan, T O hUallachain; S Ahearne, T Prendergast; JJ Hutchinson, D Guiry, C Murray; D Hutchinson, F O Cuirrin, M Curry.
D Corcoran for O Ceallaigh (24), S Whelan-Barrett for Guiry (45), J Mullaney for O’Donovan (50), Joe Allen for JJ Hutchinson (51), J Curry for Prendergast (64), D Fitzgerald for O Cuirrin (67)
J. Henry (Mayo)