GOALS in either half from Donal Ramsbottom and Aaron Forbes paved the way for Knockbeg College's safe passage into the next round at Parnells GAA Club, as they comfortably overcame the challenge of St Fintan's in a one-sided affair.
Following a scrappy start, an eighth-minute free by Fintan's corner-forward Ronan McDyer got the scoring under way, before the boys from the Laois/Carlow border finally opened their account on 16 minutes with a fine point from Michael Keogh.
This score helped to settle Knockbeg, and a succession of points from David Tompkins (two), Dicey O'Reilly, John Joe Mahon, Lar O'Sullivan and Ethan O'Neill, alongside an excellent individual goal by centre half-back Ramsbottom, gave them a 1-7 to 0-1 lead at the mid-way stage.
This offered them plenty of momentum heading into the second period and, courtesy of six more scores without reply from Tompkins (2), Conor Murphy, O'Reilly, O'Neill and Ramsbottom, they opened up an insurmountable 15-point cushion over the Sutton outfit as the final quarter beckoned.
McDyer did bring an end to this scoring sequence with his second point of the afternoon, but even though substitute Eoghan Smith also found the target with a brace in the closing stages, Knockbeg still managed to ease over the line and into the next round.
A second goal from influential centre-forward Forbes on 58 minutes put the icing on the cake for them.
SCORERS – Knockbeg College: D Ramsbottom 1-1, D Tompkins 0-4, M Keogh 0-3 (1f), A Forbes 1-0, E O'Neill (1f), D O'Reilly 0-2 each, L O'Sullivan, JJ Mahon, C Murphy, C Dunne, M Rennick 0-1 each. St Fintan's HS: R McDyer (2f), E Smith (1f) 0-2 each.
KNOCKBEG COLLEGE – D Bolger; L Knowles, D Brophy, A Brennan; A Campion, D Ramsbottom, L O'Sullivan; JJ Mahon, C Hogan; M Keogh, A Forbes, D O'Reilly; E O'Neill, D Tompkins, C Murphy. Subs: N Leech for Knowles (42), C Dunne for Murphy (45), S Sheridan for Mahon (51), M Rennick for Campion (54), K Doyle for Tompkins (55).
ST FINTAN'S HIGH SCHOOL – J Dowling; L O'Brien, C Flaherty, J Keane; A Foley, K Kirwan, A Keane; G Meagher, C Manley; I Reynolds, K Wade, L Nolan; R McDyer, P Adamson, K O'Connell. Subs: E Smith for Reynolds (h-t), C Sammon for Nolan (38), M Collins for O'Brien (47), D Russell for McDyer (51), K Molloy for O'Connell (58).
REF – A Lagrue (Kildare).