Allianz Hurling League Division 1B
DUBLIN 2-31 LAOIS 1-24
By Brian Lowry at MW Hire O'Moore Park
Dublin finished out their league campaign in style on Sunday as they racked up a huge score in accounting for Laois.
The final scoreline was harsh on the hosts who really put it up to Dublin for large chunk of the game.
Dublin were in free scoring form but Laois gave them their fill of it for large parts of the game. Dublin's goal just after half time was a killer blow for the Laois men as they now go off and gear up for the Leinster championship starting on April 16 with a trip to Parnell Park to take on Dublin again.
Donal Burke opened the scoring with a free in the second minute and that would be the start of a frantic scoring period. Fiachra C Fennell equalised before Cha Dwyer floated over a beauty from out on the sideline to put Laois ahead.
With both forward lines looking sharp, Dublin wrestled back the initiative with two Donal Burke points edging them back ahead. PJ Scully started the game well for Laois and he knocked over a score in the ninth minute to cut the Dublin lead to a point.
Dublin were able to keep their noses in front with Fergal Whitely to the fore while a brace of quick points from Rian McBride in the 12th minute put the Dubs 0-8 to 0-4 in front.
Laois then hit a purple patch with three points in the space of two minutes. PJ Scully nailed a free before James Keyes and Cha Dwyer pointed to get the score back to 0-8 to 0-7 after 15 minutes.
Once again, Dublin began to pull away with Fergal Whitely and Donal Burke on target but a free from PJ Scully and a second score of the day for James Keyes left it 0-11 t 0-9 in favour of Dublin with 21 minutes gone.
Dublin then hit the next six scores, three of those placed balls from Donal Burke as they opened up an eight point cushion with five minutes left in the half. Podge Delaney fired over for Laois to narrow the gap but with two minutes to go to half time, Dublin were comfortable leading 0-19 to 0-10.
Laois then got a massive slice of luck. A flowing team move ended up with James Keyes striking for a score but his effort was fumbled on the goal line by Dublin keeper Sean Brennan and the ball bounced over the line for a Laois goal. PJ Scully landed a long range free while Cha Dwyer added another to bring it back to 0-19 to 1-12.
With the opening half in injury time, Dublin managed to tag on two more scores with Donal Burke and Davy Keogh both adding to their tallies to make it 0-21 to 1-12 at half time.
Burke wasted no time in getting the second half scoring started as he knocked over his 12th point of the day inside the opening minute.
They continued their good start and three minutes after the restart, they had the ball in the net. Sean Downey and Paul Crummey tussled for a high ball but as it broke, Eamon Dillon was on hand to score from close range. Rian McBride added another point and Dublin led 1-24 to 1-12 after 40 minutes.
PJ Scully and Cha Dwyer knocked over points for Laois while on 46 minutes, Dublin forward Rian McBride was shown a straight red card for an off the ball incident.
The scoring eased off as the game entered the final 20 minutes but Fergal Whitely and Alex Considine both found the range to move Dublin on to 1-29. Laois were battling hard and points from Fiachra C Fennell and James Keyes kept them moving forward as Dublin led 1-29 to 1-20 with 12 minutes to go.
Two long range frees from Ross King narrowed the deficit to seven points with nine minutes to play while substitute Ciaran Byrne added another with five minutes remaining.
Dublin finished out the game strongly with Burke and Whitely adding points while substitute Alex Considine got in for their second goal deep into injury time.
Scorers for Dublin: Donal Burke 0-14 (0-10 frees, 0-1 ’65), Fergal Whitely 0-7, Eamon Dillon 1-1, Alex Considine 1-1, Davy Keogh 0-3, Rian McBride 0-3, Donnacha Ryan 0-1, Jake Malone 0-1.
Scorers for Laois: PJ Scully 0-7 (0-6 frees), James Keyes 1-2, Cha Dwyer 0-4, Jordan Walsh 0-4, Ross King 0-3 (0-2 frees), Fiachra C Fennell 0-2, Podge Delaney 0-1, Ciaran Byrne 0-1
DUBLIN: Sean Brennan; Andrew Dunphy, Eoghan O'Donnell, Cian O'Callaghan; Donnacha Ryan, Paddy Smyth, James Madden; Chris Crummey, Jake Malone; Donal Burke, Davy Keogh, Rian McBride; Eamon Dillon, Paul Crummey, Fergal Whitely. Subs: Conor Burke for C Crummey (inj – 32), Sean Moran for Dunphy (39), Mark Schutte for Madden (40), Alex Considine for P Crummey (48), Colin Currie for Schutte (inj – 63), Aidan Mellett for Malone (65), Ciaran Dowling for Dillon (70)
LAOIS: Enda Rowland; Diarmuid Conway, Sean Downey, Padraic Dunne; Conor Phelan, Podge Delaney, Eric Killeen; Fiachra C Fennell, James Keyes; Paddy Purcell, Cha Dwyer, Jordan Walshe; Mark Dowling, Willie Dunphy, PJ Scully. Subs: Ryan Mullaney for Delaney (48), Ross King for PJ Scully (52), Ciaran Byrne for Mark Dowling (52), Ciaran Comerford for Walshe (59), John Lennon for Purcell (64)
Referee: Colum Cunning (Antrim)