Laois edged an entertaining battle against an Offaly side, minus Ciarán McManus and Niall McNamee at the opening of the new Mountmellick GAA Clubhouse by GAA President Liam O’Neill last night.
McNamee was an interested sideline spectator in a game where Laois raced to a 0-10 to 0-2 lead after 28 minutes, with MJ Tierney leading the charge with five first-half points.
Offaly bounced back with four unanswered points as scores from Laois native Mark Dunne, Ken Casey and John Maloney saw the Faithfuls cut the deficit to four points at the break.
Tom Coffey’s charges looked strongest on the restart, with Dunne, Alan McNamee, John Reynolds, John Maloney and Casey impressive.
Offaly cut the deficit to a point with eight minutes remaining following an Anton Sullivan score but Laois finished strongly with a Billy Sheehan point.
Scorers for Laois: MJ Tierney (4f, 1 ‘45) 0-7; S Conroy, D Strong 0-2 each; G Walsh (1f), D Conway, C Boyle, C Kelly, B Sheehan 0-1 each.
Scorers for Offaly: K Casey (2f, 1 ‘45) 0-5; M Dunne 0-4; J Maloney 0-2; J Reynolds, R Brady, A Sullivan 0-1 each.
LAOIS: E Culliton; L Kealy, K Lillis, M Timmons; D Strong, S Julian, C Boyle; K Meaney, J Finn; S Conroy, B Sheehan, MJ Tierney; D Conway, G Walsh, C Kelly.
Subs: J Dunphy for Culliton (HT); J Kavanagh for Boyle (41); C Munnelly for Strong (47); D O’Connor for Conroy (55); A Mahon for Tierney (64).
OFFALY: A Mulhall; E Rigney, R Dalton, S Pender; B Darby, J Maloney, S Sullivan; N Smith, A McNamee; D Kelly, M Dunne, D Hanlon; A Sullivan, J Reynolds, K Casey.
Subs: R Brady for Kelly (50); B Allen for Reynolds (53); K Meehan for Mulhall (56); M Brazil for Hanlon (68).
Referee: Syl Doyle (Wexford).
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