Galway's second game in the 2023 Leinster Minor Hurling Championship served as a warning to all rivals as they racked up a 29-point win over 2022 finalists Laois at O'Moore Park, while there were also wins for Wexford, Offaly and Kilkenny in this afternoon's tier one games in the province.
Aaron Niland got the Tribesmen out to a flying start in Portlaoise when he registered the first score of his 1-10 tally in the first minute, but Laois responded well through scores from Cormac Byrne, Eoghan Murphy and Eli Quinn and were right in the game with 20 minutes gone, the scores tied at 0-8 each.
That all changed however when Galway hammered their hosts by scoring 3-5 without reply before half-time to effectively wrap up their second win of the championship. Niland (from a 20-metre free), Brian Callanan and Vince Morgan all found the net for the Tribesmen, with Stephen Keane following up shortly after half-time to really pile the agony on the home side. Michael Burke, Colm Burke and Callanan were the main scorers outside of Niland from then on, as Fergal Healy's side eased to a 4-28 to 0-11 win.
Wexford's 1-9 to 1-8 win over Dublin was arguably the only "all-heavyweight" clash of the day, as Wexford rode the wave of their fast start in Chadwicks Wexford Park to scrape a 1-9 to 0-8 win.
Jason Doyle got them out to a wonderful start with 1-2 in the opening 15 minutes as they moved six points clear, but gradually Dublin settled into the tie, only to be undone by their inaccuracy. David Purcell got some excellent points either side of a goal from Conor Newton, but eight first half wides hurt the Dubs as they trailed by 1-5 to 0-3 at half-time.
The lead alternated between one of and two points the whole way through a tight second half in very poor conditions, but after Purcell made it 1-9 to 1-8 after 55 minutes, the next five minutes of normal time and five minutes of stoppage time saw neither side add to their tally.
Abbotstown was the venue for the meeting of Kilkenny and Antrim, where the Saffrons started well through a goal from Ronan McGarry, and trailed by just a single point with 20 minutes gone.
Five points in a row for the Cats before half-time changed the complexion of the tie and by the time they scored again, Kilkenny's lead was out to 11 points. Brian Moore, Ed Lauhoff and Greg Kelly all scored freely, with Kelly and Bill McDermott adding late goals in a 2-21 to 1-8 win.
In Tullamore, Kerry were much improved from last week's dismal showing against Wexford, and while they were rocked by an early goal for Rob Carney of Offaly, 1-5 to 0-1 at half-time offered plenty of possibility, given the strength of the wind that was set to favour Kerry after half-time.
After Kerry opened the scoring in the second half, Offaly got four in a row in play from Dylan Hollywood, Rob Carney, Mark Mulrooney and Cillian Bourke to lead by 1-9 to 0-2 and they cruised home from there to win by 1-15 to 0-6, with Kerry not getting their first point from play until the 54th minute, when Ivan Conway hit the target.
In the tier two games, Westmeath beat Down by 3-14 to 0-9 at Darver, while Mark Kiernan and Michael Owens each got hat-tricks for Kildare with Tim Tyan (1-2), Charlie Carroll (1-8) and Tom Power (1-5) all scoring freely in a 9-23 to 0-5 win over Wicklow at Hawkfield.