Kevin Mullen Shield
Na Piarsaigh 1-13 Dowdallshill 0-7
The new season began for both these town sides with an early morning clash on the Rock Road in cold but bright conditions and it was the hosts, Na Piarsaigh, who prevailed thanks to a strong first-half performance which saw them build up a sizeable lead, 1-7 to 0-3, by half-time.
The 'Hill, who had new joint-managers Andrew Collier and David Kirwan manning the sideline for the first time, suffered an early blow when Paul Gill got his marching orders in the opening minutes. And it got progressively worse for the visitors when they lost Eamonn Dufy to a black card, and then Gerry McShane to two yellows, all before the interval.
Na Piarsaigh took full advantage of their opponents’ difficulties as a goal from Michael Woods helped them to lead by seven at the break, while Robbie Murphy, Tommy Muckian and Mark O’Hare were among the point scorers.
In spite of turning around two men short, Dowdallshill performed with more purpose on the re-start, however, they never looked like getting enough scores on the board to trouble the home side, and so it proved.
Na Piarsaigh: Damien McCrink; Fearghal Mulholland, Ronan McCartney, Shane Roddy; Ciarán Murphy (0-1), Joe Woods, Conall Shields; Jarlath Lyons (0-1), Michael Woods (1-1); Mark Larkin (0-2), Mark O’Hare (0-2), Robbie Murphy (0-3); Alan McCartney (0-1), Gavin McGee (0-1), Tommy Muckian (0-1)
Subs: Stephen Arrowsmith, Peter Gallagher, Francie Gaffey
Dowdallshill: Robbie Arthur (0-2); Seán Duffy, Ciarán O'Callaghan, Paul Flynn; Justin Halley, Eamonn Duffy, Luke O'Brien; Peter Hughes (0-1), Paul Gill; Rob Traynor, Gerry McShane, Noel Finnegan (0-2); Dylan McDonnell, Kevin Kirk (0-2), Martin Óg O'Brien
Subs: Ciarán Thornton, Tommy Craig
Referee: Anthony Briscoe (Stabannon Parnells)