Ciaran Archer struck a hat-trick of goals as Dublin cruised to the Leinster U20 football championship title tonight at the expense of Laois in Tullamore.
Beaten finalists last year, the Dubs took over this provincial decider once Archer netted their first on 25 minutes, making it 1-9 to 0-6, off the back of a sublime finish from the livewire full-forward.
Despite some fine scores from Ronan Coffey and Michael Dowling in response, Laois still went in at the break trailing by six (1-11 to 0-8) before making a positive restart via points from Diarmuid Whelan (free) and Mark Barry, with the latter settling for a point when the goal was chance on.
That was about as good as it would get for the O’Moore men as Tom Gray’s impressive charges opened up the gap again after an Alan Kinsella point, as Archer latched on to a loose ball to fire low for three more points and he tap over a free in the 43rd minute to raise his tally to 2-7.
Kieran Kennedy had the ball in the Laois net six minutes later to kill the game off as a contest and with five minutes left in regulation Eoin Dunne would concede a penalty which Archer drilled home to make it a 12-point game.
Ross McGarry and James Doran helped raise the winners tally to 4-18 before the last whistle, putting a rubber stamp on the victory which sees them into a semi-final clash with Galway and another provincial crown in the capital’s trophy cabinet.
Dublin - D O'Hanlon; D Maher, D Newcombe, E O’Dea; K Kennedy (1-0), N Matthews, S Lambe (0-1); P O Cofaigh Byrne, D Ryan; N O’Leary (0-1), K Lynch Bissett (0-1), J Doran (0-3); B O’Leary (0-2), C Archer (3-8, 0-7f, 1-0pen), R McGarry (0-2, 1f). Subs: D Lacey for D Ryan, H Ladd for B O’Leary, A Lynch for D Maher, C Kinsella for E O’Dea, M Lavin for N O’Leary, S Foran for K Kennedy.
Laois - M Byron; M Dowling, S Lacey, A Mohan; C Slevin, S O’Flynn, D Brophy; R Tyrrell, E Dunne (0-1); M Barry (0-2, 1f), M Doran (0-1), R Coffey (0-1); A Kinsella (0-2), D McCormack, D Whelan (0-8, 6f). Subs: J Owens (0-1) for M Doran, N Dunne (0-1) for D McCormack, J Maher for R Coffey, K Byrne for S Lacey, R Brennan for D Brophy, J Lacey for A Mohan.
Referee - B Cawley.
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