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Dublin: 11°C Sunday 9 May 2021

Sean Quigley's 2-8 isn't enough as Laois edge Fermanagh by a point

Quigley was in fantastic form, but Laois did enough to go through to the next round of the qualifiers.

Sean Quigley celebrates his first goal.
Sean Quigley celebrates his first goal.
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Laois 1-19

Fermanagh 2-15

LAOIS CAME THROUGH a tough test against a Sean Quigley-inspired Fermanagh in Portlaoise today.

Laois had nine different scorers while Fermanagh relied heavily on their powerful full-forward, who notched up 2-8 of his side’s 2-15.

The teams were level at half-time after the home team hit nine wides, despite dominating possession.

But a goal by Billy Sheehan crowned a fifteen-minute purple patch midway through the second half which proved crucial for Tomás Ó’Fláharta’s team.

Sheehan’s goal on 45 minutes came courtesy of a great catch by full-forward Donal Kingston, whose shot was blocked into the path of Sheehan allowing him an easy finish.

Billy Sheehan scores his side's first goal Sheehan's crucial goal. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Kingston proved Laois’s go-to man in the second half, scoring four of his six points as he roamed from full-forward out to the middle of the field as the game progressed.

It was in fact Kingston who opened the game’s scoring within the first minute. His point was supposed to set Laois on their way to a comfortable victory, but Fermanagh’s defensive blanket time and time again forced them into poor shot selection and turnovers.

A goal on 28 minutes put Fermanagh three up, minutes after they had equalised through a Ruairí Corrigan point. A high ball on top of the Laois goal was bundled in by Sean Quigley after pressure from Barry Owens.

Fermanagh score the first goal of the game following a goalmouth scramble Fermanagh score the first goal of the game following a goalmouth scramble. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

The goal sparked Laois into life, somewhat, as Ross Munnelly scored his first two points of the day and Conor Meredith managed the equaliser on 36 minutes, leaving it 0-9 to 1-6 at the interval.

Both teams opened up in the second half and a Quigley free on 42 minutes leveled the teams for the seventh time, the scoreboard reading 0-11 to 1-8.

Within 60 seconds Fermanagh were in the lead as Quigley pointed once more, and substitute Eamon Maguire put two between the teams shortly afterwards.

Sheehan’s goal two minutes later turned everything on its head for Pete McGrath’s team, who were growing in confidence. Although Quigley did respond immediately with a well-taken point, Laois soon established a four-point lead.

Colm Begley celebrates at the final whistle Colm Begley was quiet for Laois. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

An injury to midfielder John O’Loughlin upset their rhythm as Eoin Donnelly began to take over around the middle. On 60 minutes Fermanagh substitute Colm Cox was taken down by the Laois goalkeeper, providing Quigley with the opportunity to reduce the gap to just a point from the penalty spot.

While he duly obliged, his penalty failed to spark a revival as Kevin Meaney, Ross Munnelly, Colm and Paul Begley all upped their game with Laois regaining their three-point lead with two minutes of injury time remaining.

Pete McGrath and Tomas O'Flaharta shake hands at the end of the game Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Late points by Eamon Maguire and Niall Cassidy, up from the full-back line, left Fermanagh with one remaining opportunity to get something out of the game.

But Graham Brody’s final kickout was fielded by Kevin Meaney, putting to bed any chance of a heroic comeback by the Erne County and ending their 2014 season.

Scorers for Laois: Donal Kingston 0-6 (2f); Ross Munnelly 0-4 (0-2f), Billy Sheehan 1-0; Darren Strong 0-3 (2 45s); Conor Meredith 0-2; Kevin Meaney, Colm Begley, Paul Begley, David Conway 0-1 each.

Scorers for Fermanagh: Sean Quigley 2-8 (0-3f 1pen); Eamon Maguire 0-2; Niall Cassidy, Barry Owens, Ryan Jones, Ruairí Corrigan, Paul McCusker 0-1 each.

Four young Laois supporters look on There was a disappointing turnout in Portlaoise. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO


1. Graham Brody (Portlaoise)
2. Padraig McMahon (Ballyroan Abbey)
3. Denis Booth (The Heath)
4. Peter O’Leary (O’Dempsey’s)
5. Darren Strong (Emo)
6. Paul Begley (Stradbally)
7. Colm Begley (Parnells)
8. Conor Meredith (O’Dempsey’s)
9. John O’Loughlin (St Brigid’s)
10. James Finn (Ballyfin)
11. Billy Sheehan (Emo)
12. Niall Donoher (Courtwood)
13. Ross Munnelly (Arles-Kilcruise)
14. Donal Kingston (Arles-Killeen)
15. David Conway (Arles-Kilcruise)


20. Kevin Meaney (Arles-Kilcruise) for Finn (29)
18. Stephen Attride (Killeshin) for Conway (49)
21. Colm Coss (Mountmellick) for O’Loughlin (52)
19. Darragh O’Connor for Sheehan (70)


1. Chris Snow (St Joseph’s)
2. Marty O’Brien (Devenish)
3. Barry Mulrone (Devenish)
4. Niall Cassidy (Roslea)
5. Declan McCusker (St Joseph’s)
6. Ryan McCluskey (Enniskillen Gaels)
7. Tommy McElroy (Parnells)
8. Eoin Donnelly (Coa)
9. Richard O’Callaghan (Enniskillen Gaels)
10. Lee Cullen (Belleek)
11. Ryan Jones (Derrygonnelly)
12. Paul McCusker (St Joseph’s)
13. Ruairí Corrigan (Kinawley)
14. Sean Quigley (Roslea)
15. Barry Owens (Teemore)


21. Eamon Maguire (St Patrick’s) for Cullen (35)
23. Mark Murphy (Derrylin) for McCusker (52)
18. Brian Cox (Belcoo) for Mulrone (58)

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