Sarah Anne Fitzgerald on the attack for Laois.
Ballacolla GAA was the venue on a very wet evening for the Leinster Intermediate semi-final. Both teams met previously in the Littlewoods National League, where Carlow came out winners in a low-scoring game.
Laois started off well from the throw-in, putting pressure on Carlow. Three early frees converted by Sarah Ann Fitzgerald saw Laois leading after 15 minutes, before Carlow got on the score sheet with a converted free.
Fitzgerald continued to convert frees awarded to Laois before a pass from Linda Keyes into captain Rosemaire Bermingham hand passed ball into the net for Laois’s first goal of the game. A point from play for Carlow had the half-time score reading Laois 1-4 Carlow 0-3.
Niamh Dollard was introduced at the start of the second half for Joan Dollard and made an impact straight off, with a quick ball into Linda Keyes earning Laois’s second goal two minutes into the second half.
Frees and a point from play by Fitzgerald and points from sub Louise Mahony and Niamh Dollard left Carlow a tough battle to come back from.
Carlow kept the pressure up until the final whistle and credit is due to the outstanding Aisling Burke and Laois’s backline for keeping Carlow from scoring in the last few minutes to earn Laois a Leinster Intermediate final place against Westmeath on Sunday 28th May.
Scorers: Sarah Anne Fitzgerald 0-7, Linda Keyes, Rosemarie Bermingham 1-0 each, Niamh Dollard, Louise Mahony 0-1 each.
Team: Laura Dunne (St Brigid's); Aoife Collier (Camross), Niamh Coss (St Brigid's), Aoife Hyland (O’Moores); Maggie Hogan (St Brigid's), Aisling Burke (Camross), Sarah Creagh (St Brigid's); Alison McEvoy (O’Moores), Sarah Anne Fitzgerald (Camross); Casey Conroy (O’Moores), Rosemarie Bermingham (Capt, O’Moores), Eimear Guidera (St Brigid's); Linda Keyes (Camross), Joan Dollard (The Harps), Aisling O’Dea (St Brigid's). Subs: Niamh Dollard (Camross ) for Dollard (half time); Rebecca Williams (O’Moores) for Keyes; Roisin Kilmartin (St Brigid's) for Hogan; Louise Mahony (The Harps) for Eimear Guidera; Holly Kilcare (St Brigid's) for Aisling O’Dea.