Bord Gáis Energy Leinster Under 20 Hurling Championship
Laois 4-27 Antrim 0-7
Antrim’s under 20’s was simply no match for their Laois counterparts in Tuesday evenings Leinster championship match in Navan. After a scoring burst midway through the first half which yielded 2-2, there was simply no way back for the northerners.
It was a devasting period that turned the tie on its head and as their confidence drained from their souls, the young Saffron’s never recovered.
It had all started so brightly too.
After Ciaran Magill had levelled the tie on five minutes, Niall O’Connor put Antrim ahead two minutes later. However, Laois soon restored parity when Tadhg Cuddy knocked over his second free of the evening. And from here, the O’Moore county kicked on and never looked back.
On 13 minutes Cuddy’s effort came back off the upright and James Duggan reacted quickest to the breaking ball to swoop for the games first goal, and less than two minutes later Duggan stormed through the visitor’s defence to hammer home his second major of the evening.
Duggan and Cuddy added further points to the Laois scorecard and at the waterbreak Antrim trailed 2-5 to 0-3.
Things didn’t improve for Antrim after the break as Gearoid Lynch claimed Laois’ third goal of the game on 20 minutes before Duggan went on to claim a further 1-3 before Cuddy claimed his seventh point of the half on the stroke of half time to give their side a commanding twenty point advantage, 4-12 to 0-4, with Conal Bohill and Declan McCloskey adding to Antrim’s tally.
The homeside kept their foot firmly on the accelerator as two efforts from Cuddy and Tomas Keyes helped stretch their lead further before a Rian McMullan free broke the scoring sequence on 41 minutes.
As the game ticked into its closing stages Bohill pointed for the second time before Rory McCloskey let his frustration get the better of him. The full back picked up a second yellow card on 53 minutes for a rash challenge on Lynch.
It capped off a night to forget for Antrim as Laois comfortably advance to a meeting with Kilkenny.
Teams & Scorers:
Laois: Lorcan Fitzpatrick, Ian Shanahan, Alan Connolly, Danny Brennan, Padraig Brennan (0-1), Ciaran Burke, Niall Coss (0-1), Tomas Keyes (0-2), Thep Fitzpatrick, James Duggan (2-4), Tadhg Cuddy (0-15 9f), Gearoid Lynch (1-1), Ciaran Byrne (0-1), Mark Hennessy (1-0), Cathal Murphy.
Subs: Bryan Bredin for Burke (43), Eddie Critchley (0-2) for Murphy (45), Conor Walsh for Hennessy (50), Lawson Obular for Coss (54),
Antrim: Paul Doherty, Donal Kearney, Rory McCloskey, Conor Henry, Enda McGarry, Niall O’Connor (0-1), Declan McCloskey (0-1), Ciaran Magill (0-1), Cormac Donnelly, Daire Murphy, Conal Bohill (0-2), Dannan McKeough, Rian McMullan (0-1f), Michael McGarry, Seanie McIntosh.
Subs: Aidan Scullion (0-1)