A physically stronger Westmeath progressed to the Leinster MFC semi-finals on Saturday but were made work for their three-point victory by battling Wicklow at Aughrim.
Centre-forward Ger Leech and full-forward Lorcan Dolan accounted for eight points while Aaron Curley and Justin Barrett gave the winners advantage at midfield.
Westmeath had the wind behind them in the first half but it took 15 minutes to get their nose in front and they led by 0-6 to 0-2 at half time.
Wicklow twice sliced that lead down to one and two-point margins, but failed to deliver the vital blow.
Scorers for Westmeath: G Leech (2fs), L Dolan 0-4 each, R Connellan, PJ Maguire 0-1 each.
Scorers for Wicklow: M O’Connor 0-4fs, C French 0-2, D Lohan 0-1f.
WESTMEATH: B Doyle; B Donoghue, E Quigley, R Gorman; A McCormack, L Corless, K Daly; J Barrett, A Curley; T Watts, G Leech, TJ Fox; D McDermott, L Dolan, J Corbally.
Subs: R Connellan for TJ Fox, S Dempsey for Corbally, R Caffrey for Watts, S Moran for McCormack. PJ Maguire for Curley.
WICKLOW: R Fitzgerald; J Miley, R Marron, C Ó Duallacháin; C Hatton, D Lohan, PJ Daly; P Phelan, T O’Donoghue; D Dawson, P Ellis, A Nugent; C Healy, C French, M O’Connor.
Subs: A Fleming for Hatton, D Tompkins for Healy, A Howard for Nugent.
Referee: F Barry (Kildare).
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