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Carlow Head For Tommy Murphy Cup
Sunday, June 10
BOI LEINSTER SFC Q-F
Offaly 2-19 Carlow 3-7
A 17-point margin would have been a more accurate reflection of Offaly's dominance as they were in control from the outset, with Alan McNamee and Niall Smith taking charge around midfield.
This ensured a regular flow of possession to the inside forward line and PJ Ward was the prime beneficiary, clocking up six points from play to finish with a tally of 0-8.Niall McNamee weighed in with six points (three from play) but Ward was the undoubted star.
The former Westmeath man was making his championship debut for his adopted county and proceeded to torment both Christopher Bolger and Evan Doyle.Carlow would have known they needed a quick start and they got it when Paul Reid slotted the opener just 35 seconds into the game.
Their next score was a goal from Derek Hayden but it didn't arrive until added time at the end of the half, by which stage Offaly had 1-10 on the board.Ward and Niall McNamee clocked up eight of those points, while the goal came courtesy of Neville Coughlan's left boot after a powerful surge from Alan McNamee.
The second half was a procession and when Karol Slattery took a pass from Ward to superbly bury to the net from close range with 14 minutes still left on the clock, Offaly were coasting, with a 2-17 to 1-4 lead.
Carlow moved Mark Brennan into full-forward and he had a hand in his side's two late goals, the first of which was an own goal by Alan McNamee, with the second finished by James Hickey.
But by that stage, Offaly had lost the heart to keep punishing their beleaguered opponents.
Offaly: PJ Ward 0-8(2fs); N McNamee 0-6(3fs); N Coughlan, K Slattery 1-1 each; P Kellaghan, A McNamee, C McManus 0-1 each.
Carlow: D Hayden, J Hickey 1-0 each; A McNamee (own goal); B Kelly 0-2(1f); P Reid, M Carpenter, N Conway, D Byrne, JJ Smith 0-1 each.
Offaly: P Kelly; G Rafferty, J Quinn, J Keane; P McConway, S Brady, K Slattery; A McNamee, N Smith; N Coughlan, P Kellaghan, C McManus; T Deehan, PJ Ward, N McNamee.
Subs: S Ryan for Kellaghan (50); J Coughlan for Deehan (50); N Grennan for Rafferty (56); C Mahon for Ward (64); C Evans for Keane (67).
Carlow: J Clarke; J Ryan, C Bolger, M Nolan; P Cashin, E Doyle, J Hickey; G Morrissey, M Brennan; K Nolan, D Hayden, M Carpenter; P Reid, D Byrne, B Kelly.
Subs: R McGrath for Morrissey (18); A Murphy for Bolger (ht); JJ Smith for Cashin (47); N Conway for Kelly (53); P Doyle for Reid (65).
Referee: M Daly (Mayo).