Westmeath booked their place in the quarter-finals of the Leinster u-21’s with an easy 10-point win over Laois at O’Moore Park last night.
Pat Flanagan’s team were far too strong for the home side and now progress to meet Offaly on March 9.
Laois started brightly, James Doyle winning a free which was scored by Luke Doyle. They failed to build on that, however, and Westmeath scored three points in a row, all from frees, with Conor Lynam (two) and Ian Coffey on target.
Westmeath were by far the better team in the first half and had built up a three-point lead before winning a penalty which Coffey converted to give Laois a mountain to climb.
Flanagan’s men led at the break 1-6 to 0-3, and Laois could never get back into the game, a late goal from Barry Kelly a mere consolation for the home team.
Scorers – Westmeath: C Lynam 0-5 (3f), I Coffey 1-1 (1-0 pen, 1f), T McDaniel 0-3, A Corroon, J Dolan 0-2 each, K Sheridan, C McCormack 0-1 each
Laois: B Kelly 1-0, K Lillis 0-2, C Farrell, L Doyle (1f), G Walsh (1f) 0-1 each.
Westmeath – E Carberry; B Moran, K Sheridan, K Maguire; M McCallum, K Martin, J Dolan; D Keenan, D Daly; A Corroon, C Lynam, G Egan; I Coffey, C McCormack, T McDaniel. Subs: D Malynn for Corroon (50), S Flanagan for Keenan (52), J Gilligan for Daly (58), D Gavin for Martin (60).
Laois – J Dunphy; A Whelan, C Booth, S George; S Murphy, C Farrell, J Nerney; D Kingston, K Lillis; L Doyle, S Nerney, B Kelly; J Doyle, D Hayden, G Walsh. Subs: K Campion for George (20), B Mitchell for J Nerney (25), J Farrell for S Nerney (ht), R O’Connor for J Doyle (h-t), J Finn for Hayden (42).
Ref – B O’Shea (Dublin).