Ballyroan Abbey opened their ACFL Division 2 campaign with a one-point win over Portlaoise in a low-scoring game on Saturday afternoon.
Despite some good football being played by both sides, scores were at a premium as the rustiness of a winter’s worth of inactivity lead to the final score reading just 1-4 to 1-3.
Portlaoise had lead 1-3 to 0-2 at half time, but Ballyroan upped their game in the second half with two points from wing-back Niall Wallace and a goal from Der Mulhall to win by a point.
Both teams were missing a raft of players, but Ballyroan Abbey will still be pleased with the win against a side which beat them in the semi-finals of the league last year. With Padraig McMahon due back from his travels in late April, and the return of players like Mick Brennan and John Madigan, the club will be looking to push on from their IFC final defeat to Killeshin last year.
It proved to be a successful start to the year for Killeshin too, as they eventually pulled clear from Clonaslee St Manman’s. The sides were close throughout the game before Killeshin’s fitness told late in the game as they claimed a 3-12 to 1-9 win.
Annanough also secured an opening day win with a 2-11 to 2-4 victory over Ballyfin in Vicarstown.
The hosts had the better of the opening half but couldn’t translate it into scores, and they lead by just two points at half time, 0-5 to 0-3. The improved in the second half, and with a more clinical touch in front of goal, they started to put some daylight between themselves and Ballyfin. Goals from Colin Miller and Donal Miller capped off a good performance.
In the last of the games played over the weekend, Mountmellick made sure all four home sides picked up victories as they cruised to a comfortable 1-13 to 1-3 win over Courtwood. Two games which were scheduled for Saturday, The Rock v Portarlington and The Heath v Park-Ratheniska, were postponed due to bereavements in the Portarlington and Park-Ratheniska clubs.
A full round of Division 2 games takes place this weekend.