Meath 2-21 Carlow 1-09
HAVING OFFERED CARLOW something of a reprieve during the sides’ previous encounter, Meath were in no mood to further jeopardise their season during this afternoon’s Senior Football Championship quarter-final replay at Tullamore’s O’Connor Park.
Though their less illustrious opposition succeeded in remaining competitive during the opening quarter, levelling the score on four separate occasions, the Royals used the remainder of the half to bring their superior conditioning and dynamism to bear.
Indeed, Meath entered the half-time break with a 10-point lead (1-11 0-4) and the satisfaction of having silenced their opposition, in scoring terms at least, for a full twenty minutes of the opening period.
Carlow began the second half more brightly, securing only their second score from open play within two minutes of the restart, but struggled to build momentum.
With the game rumbling purposefully towards a Meath victory, substitute Keith Jackson intervened to extend Luke Dempsey’s men a valuable lifeline. His goal, scored with 16 minutes remaining, reduced the deficit to nine points (1-16 1-07) and, in doing so, raised the spectre of an improbable comeback.
With additional points, let alone those required to build an historic result, proving elusive, it fell to Meath’s Peadar Byrne to deliver the coup de grace – his second goal of the game – on the stroke of full-time.