Cavan storm past Laois to easy victory

Just two points separate first from last in Division Two of the Allianz League after this rescheduled meeting in Portlaoise but the gap between Cavan and Laois on the day was enormous.

Cavan storm past Laois to easy victory

[team1]Laois[/team1][score1]1-6[/score1][team2]Cavan[/team2][score2]3-10[/score2][/score]

Just two points separate first from last in Division Two of the Allianz League after this rescheduled meeting in Portlaoise but the gap between Cavan and Laois on the day was enormous.

One of these teams has spent two seasons recently in the rarified air of Division One. The other has had to evade the clutches of Division Four. Cavan were well worthy of this ten-point win, their largest ever over the midlanders.

The visitors had the wind at their backs on the off and, boy, what a wind it was as the referee threw it in. The flags at the 'Town' end cracked and whipped, spectators at the very back of the covered stand had their cheeks speckled with spots of rain.

It was little short of biblical.

The sun did eventually come out and that Jekyll and Hyde weather was echoed in the teams' first-half performances. Laois did well in the first quarter and badly in the second. Cavan kicked some good scores but registered a few too many wides to boot.

Gerard Smith and Oisin Pierson landed three points apiece for them in a first period which they finished on the up after Evan Doughty chipped goalkeeper Niall Corbet and found the net. Did he mean it? Didn't matter.

Laois suffered another blow in injury-time with centre-back Robbie Pigott sent to the bin for a trip and they were thankful for a hugely fortuitous goal of their own, from Eoin Lowry after 22 minutes, that ultimately kept the half-time deficit to five points.

It was a score that would feature at the top of any blooper reel with a dead ball played into the Cavan penalty area, bypassing the intended recipient, and then sticking in the mud just as half-back Smith was poised to pick up and clear.

What followed was the ugliest of scrambles with the ball rebounding back off the post before Lowry poked it home but it proved to be a curious kind of high point for a side that had drawn and won their opening two games.

Cavan introduced Stephen Murray at half-time and the attacking defender bookended the second period with a pair of goals that put the gloss on the afternoon. The second was especially sweet given it involved a spectacular finish and sublime pass from Gearoid McKiernan.

Laois only managed three points in that period, though the wind was at their backs, and only one of those came from play. Add in a torturous day for their main scoring threat Evan O'Carroll and a Gary Walsh penalty that was saved and it made for a bad day's work all round.

Scorers for Laois: E O'Carroll (0-3 frees); E Lowry (1-0); J O'Loughlin (0-2); M Berry (0-1 free).

Scorers for Cavan: S Murray (2-0); O Pierson and G Smith (0-3 each); E Doughty (1-0); B Magee (0-3 frees); R Galligan (0-1 free).

Laois: N Corbet; B Byne, M Timmons, G Hanrahan; P O'Sullivan, R Pigott, S O'Flynn; K Lillis, J O'Loughlin; S Byrne, M Barry, E Lowry; M Keogh, C Murphy, E O'Carroll.

Subs: T Collins for Byrne (46); R Munnelly for Murphy (50); G Walsh for O'Flynn (60); D Whelan for O'Carroll (65).

Cavan: K Brady, P Faulkner, O Kiernan; G Smith, C Brady, M Reilly; T Galligan, C Conroy; L Fortune, B Magee, E Doughty; J Smith, G McKiernan, O Pierson.

Subs: C Madden for Conroy (52); L Buchanan for Smith (65); P Gilcreest for Doughty (72); S Smith for Magee (73).

Referee: N Cullen (Fermanagh).

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