With the sun setting over Ratheniska on Saturday evening, Rosenallis survived a second half scare from The Harps to hold out for a five point victory to go top of the group, while The Harps slumped to their second consecutive defeat.
It was the eventual winners that claimed the opening score with just a minute elapsed through industrious midfielder Simon Smith, as Rosenallis laid an early foundation for the game ahead. The Harps’ Conor Brophy leveled the game shortly after, before Niall Doolin edged Rosenallis back in front with his first point after five minutes.
Brian Clancy drew the game level once again with a superb effort under-pressure from forty yards, before Rosenallis finally put their stamp on the game. Joe Conroy came to the fore for Rosenallis and slotted three consecutive frees in quick succession as they opened a three point cushion.
Conroy, Simon Smith and Gary Kelly each contributed another point apiece as Rosenallis closed out a dominant fifteen minute spell to find themselves six points clear of their opposition. The Harps ended their scoring drought shortly after as Ross Young and Stephen Burke reduced the margin to four points.
Rosenallis finished the half strongly with Simon Smith and Joe Conroy (2) notching points to increase their lead to six points going in at the break.
Rosenallis picked up where they left off with Joe Dooley splitting the posts, before The Harps hit them for 1-1 in just two minutes. John Dunne set their scoring in motion with a well-taken point, and then Conor Brophy’s long-range free managed to evade everyone to find its way into the back of the net.
Rosenallis reclaimed their lead as they fired four unanswered points with Paddy Keating and Joe Conroy both landing braces. With five minutes remaining The Harps claimed their second goal through John Dunne, but their celebrations were cut-short as Rosenallis rattled the The Harps net just two minutes later through Niall Doolin.
Conor Brophy and Brian Clancy added to the scoreboard late on for The Harps, but a ninth point from Rosenallis’ Joe Conroy sealed the win for his side to land them at the top of the group.
Scorers - Rosenallis: Joe Conroy 0-9, 0-7f; Niall Doolin 1-1; Simon Smith 0-3; Paddy Keating 0-2; Gary Kelly and Joe Dooley 0-1 each. The Harps: Conor Brophy 1-2f; John Dunne 1-1; Brian Clancy 0-3; Stephen Burke, Ross Young and Rory Moore 0-1 each.
Rosenallis: Eoin Carroll; Marcus Redmond, Tom Gorman, Stephen McEvoy; Jimmy Dunne, Enda McEvoy, Nicky Dunne; Simon Smith, Joe Dooley; Joe Conroy, Declan Conroy, Damien Gorman; Brian Fitzpatrick, Niall Doolin, Gary Kelly. Subs: Ronan Murray for Gary Kelly; Paddy Keating for Damien Gorman; Tom Keating for Nicky Dunne; Declan Walsh for Declan Conroy.
The Harps: Peter Walsh; Michael Larkin, Gavin Dunne, Sean Larkin; Conor Brophy, Tommy Moore, JP Deegan; Ronan Delahunty, Rory Moore; Ross Young, John Dunne, Brian Clancy; James Larkin, Stephen Burke, Ciaran Freeman. Subs: Colm Dunphy for Ronan Delahunty.
Referee: Pat Moran