A strong start was the key for Laois as they overcame Mayo in Stradbally on Sunday to register their third win of the league campaign.
Tesco Home Grown League Division 1
However Mayo came back strongly after a slow start and Laois needed a penalty save from Niamh Dollard to keep their noses in front before closing out the game well with a goal from Laurie Marie Maher settling the outcome.
The win leaves them in a three way tie at the top of the table on nine points with Cork and Monaghan although Monaghan do have a game in hand.
Laois blitzed Mayo from the off and goals from Ciara Burke and Martha Kirwan saw them open up an early 2-2 to 0-0 lead. Mayo came back into the game well with veteran Cora Staunton finding the back of the net but Laois hit back with Laurie Marie Marie adding her first goal of the day before the break to leave Laois in front by 3-4 to 1-5.
Mayo rallied again early in the second-half but the penalty save from Niamh Dollard swung the momentum back in favour of Laois. Mayo did score a second goal from Aileen Gilroy and that set up a grandstand finish before Maher scored her second goal late on to make the game safe for Laois.
On the day Tracey Lawlor accounted for seven of Laois’ nine points in another fine individual display with Maggie Murphy also finding the target. The Laois defence also played their part by stemming the Mayo tied when the Connaught side looked set to overhaul the early deficit.
Laois now have a lengthy break before they play their next game at home to Monaghan on March 24. That will be a crucial game against a Monaghan side who have been right on form so far winning their first three games in impressive fashion by an average of seven points per game.