LAOIS SECURED A dramatic last-gasp 0-18 to 0-17 win over Wexford in today’s All-Ireland SFC Round 2A Qualifier at Wexford Park.
The Model County had led by two points in the dying stages, before three unanswered points handed the visitors the win.
MJ Tierney proved the most influential player on the field late on, scoring two points from deadballs and setting up another.
Wexford started brightly, establishing a 0-6 to 0-2 lead early on, with Paddy Byrne, Ciarán Lyng and Ben Brosnan among the scorers.
(Wexford’s PJ Banville dejected after the game)
However, not for the last time, Laois fought back strongly, claiming four unanswered points to bring the scores level.
The game remained closely fought until half-time, with Laois holding a narrow one-point lead at the break.
The second period was similarly tight, though further points from Brosnan, PJ Banville and Lyng gave the hosts some breathing space in the form of a 0-16 to 0-13 lead.
Another point from Brosnan appeared to have put his side in control, before some inspirational play by Tierney instigated Laois’ stunning comeback.
Scorers for Laois: John O’Loughlin 0-4, Donie Kingston 0-4 (0-3f), Niall Donoher 0-3, MJ Tierney 0-2f, Colm Begley 0-1, Conor Meredith 0-1, Ross Munnelly 0-1, Damien O’Connor 0-1, Kevin Meaney 0-1. Scorers for Wexford: Ciaran Lyng 0-5, Ben Brosnan 0-4 (0-2f, 0-1f), PJ Banville 0-3, James Holmes 0-1, Paddy Byrne 0-2, Graeme Molloy 0-1, Robert Tierney 0-1.
Wexford: Shane Roche; Robert Tierney, Graeme Molloy, Conor Carty; Michael Furlong, Brian Malone, Adrian Flynn; Daithi Waters, Paddy Byrne; Michael O’Regan, PJ Banville, James Holmes; Ciaran Lyng, Ben Brosnan, Kevin O’Grady.
Subs: Michael O’Regan for Tiarnan Rossiter (47)
Laois: Graham Brody; Padraig McMahon, Denis Booth; Peter O’Leary, Robbie Kehoe, Paul Begley, Colm Begley; Kevin Meaney, John O’Loughlin; Conor Meredith, Billy Sheehan, Stephen Attride; Ross Munnelly, Donal Kingston, Niall Donoher.
Subs: Damien O’Connor for Denis Booth (19), MJ Tierney for Damien O’Connor (53).
Referee: Anthony Nolan (Wicklow).