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Wexford 2-19 Offaly 2-13

Updated: Monday, 24 Feb 2014 15:34 | Comments

Liam Og McGovern's goal proved crucial for Wexford
Liam Og McGovern's goal proved crucial for Wexford

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Wexford surged to the top of Allianz HL Division 1B with an impressive 2-19 to 2-13 defeat of Offaly at O'Kennedy Park in New Ross.

Ian Byrne's eighth-minute goal gave the hosts an early platform, but Joe Bergin's 20-metre effort and a splendid second goal from Conor Mahon had Offaly 2-08 to 1-10 ahead at half-time.

Offaly still led by a point with 15 minutes remaining, however a brilliant team goal finished by Liam Og McGovern and a string of unanswered points saw Wexford home. 

Wexford started in slick fashion in New Ross and a splendid early brace of points from the impressive full-forward Gary Moore set them on their way.

Shane Tomkins then crafted a goal chance for Byrne and the wing forward dispatched a firm shot low and hard to the back of the Offaly net, making it 1-04 to 0-01.

Gradually Offaly started to work their way into the game and with Mahon, Bergin and Daniel Currams winning vital possession in attack, they started racking up the scores.

Bergin opened the Offaly goal account in the 18th minute, firing home a close range free after Currams was fouled.

Just before the interval Currams was again instrumental in putting Mahon in the clear and he found the back of the Wexford net to give the midlanders a slender lead at the interval - 2-08 to 1-10.

The third quarter was the most unproductive in terms of scoring with Wexford, in particular, not coping well playing with the strong wind and they were guilty of a number of poor wides.

As the game entered the closing stages the Wexford backs were starting to dominate their opponents, Lee Chin and Andrew Shore chief amongst them.

Backed by a fine midfield performance from Diarmuid O'Keeffe and the splendid Harry Kehoe, the Model men started to seize control of the game once more.

However, they needed the catalyst of McGovern's great goal, having been set up by leading attacker Paul Morris, to go back in front in the 55th minute - 2-13 to 2-11.

Wexford added another four points and while Brian Carroll, who was in fine form for Offaly, replied with a couple of pointed frees, Gary Moore finished the game as he had started it - knocking over two points.

WEXFORD: Mark Fanning; Bobby Kenny, Matthew O'Hanlon, Ciarán Kenny; Andrew Shore, Lee Chin, James Tonks; Diarmuid O'Keefe (0-02), Harry Kehoe; Shane Tomkins (0-01), Jack Guiney (0-02, 0-02f), Ian Byrne (1-01, 0-01f); Paul Morris (0-06, 0-01f, 0-01 '65'), Gary Moore (0-05), Liam Óg McGovern (1-02).

Subs used: Eanna Martin for Tonks, Liam Ryan for Kenny, Rory Jacob for Byrne, Conor McDonald for Guiney.

OFFALY: James Dempsey; Niall Wynne, Dan Kelliher, Brian Watkins; Sean Gardner, Rory Hanniffy, Dermot Mooney; Damien Kilmartin, Sean Ryan; Sean Cleary, Joe Bergin (1-03, 1-03f), Conor Mahon (1-02); Brian Carroll (0-07, 0-03f), Daniel Currams, Stephen Quirke (0-01).

Subs used: Chris McDonald for Kelliher, Thomas Geraghty for Cleary, Damien Egan for Wynne, Shane Dooley for Quirke.

Referee: Cathal McAllister (Cork)
 

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