Clann na nGael 1-15 Drumconrath 0-12
In a game brought sensibly brought forward to enable people to watch the Rugby or more importantly head for Portlaoise to watch the County team, Clann na nGael who arrived with just 15 players comfortably revenged the defeat by Drumconrath in last years League as the home side still search for their first points in this year's League.
Drumconrath lead by a masterful display from Stephan Crosby easily the stand out player on the pitch opened the scoring when Crosby pointed in the 1st minute. Within 2 minutes the visitors took the lead as the evergreen Graham Geraghty was proving a handful at the other end.
Alan Byrne leveled the game again and Brendan Lyons and Geraghty kept the sides close at 0-3 each after 10 minutes. Sean Kane in his 1st game of the year pulled off another fine penalty save from Caomhin O'Griofa and soon after another point blank from Anthony Farrell who was causing plenty of trouble for the Drumconrath defence.
Soon after Kane retired injured for Drumconrath in what could be a big blow to their Championship hopes but his replacement Leighton Irwin did well to keep out a decent strike from Farrell.
Drumconrath conjured up a goal chance of the own as Tomas Conlon fielded well and passed to Derek Duff whose shot hit the bottom of the upright and rebounded to Eoin Martin 2 metre's out but with an open goal he some how managed to knock the ball well wide.
Clann na nGael pushed on with a couple of Geraghty points as Derek Duff and Brendan Lyons a fine strike from a 45 had it 0-7 to 0-5 approaching half time. Two late Clann na nGael points gave the a 4 point cushion at the break 0-9 to 0-5.
Crosby grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and pointed twice with a minute at the start of the second half but 2 Aaron Ennis frees had the margin back to 4 points. A high ball into the Drumconrath square was fielded by Irwin but somehow the ball fell loose and after the resulting ping pong was palmed to the net by a Clann na nGael player.
This virtually ended the game and despite Crosby working hard further scores from the Athboy lads one a special effort from Geraghty put 9 points between the sides with 10 minutes to go.
Drumconrath tried hard and Alan Byrne hit a fine free from 40 metres and Crosby scored another fine point. Clann na nGael tagged on another 2 points and Drumconrath where awarded a penalty that came forward from the goals to blast high and over the bar.
Drums did manage the last 2 points of the game from Byrne and substitute Patrick Farrelly to narrow the gap to 6 points as the final whistle sounded.
Crosby was outstanding for Drumconrath and he got good support from Thomas Carolan while Conlon in the 1st half and and Graham Tighe tried to turn the tide Drumconrath's way.
Geraghty did well while Oran Fitzpatrick, O'Griofa and Farrell looked good for the visitors.
Drumconrath; Sean Kane; John Lynch, Oran Finnegan, Patrick Dunne; Jamie Myles, Peter Tighe, John McDermott; Stephan Crosby (0-4), Thomas Carolan; Damien Glass, Derek Duff (0-1), Tomas Conlon; Eoin Martin, Alan Byrne (0-3), Brendan Lyons (0-2). Subs; Leighton Irwin (0-1) for Kane, Aiden Tighe for Lynch, Graham Tighe for Conlon, Patrick Farrelly (0-1) for Derek Duff, Gavin Finnegan for Peter Tighe and Christopher Tighe for Glass.