Lenihan leads Royals charge
MEATH 0-18 IT CARLOW 0-12
A NEW-look Meath team survived a stern college test with a flurry of scores in the final quarter proving decisive at Pairc Tailteann.
One of the fresh faces, Donal Lenihan proved his worth with four second-half points to keep the students at bay.
IT Carlow were represented by 13 different counties in their starting line-up and found themselves six points in arrears on the half-hour before finishing the half strongly to cut the deficit and trail by 0-7 to 0-10 at the break.
The Meath rearguard struggled to cope with promising Cork star Brian Hurley, who scored three of the students' first-half scores.
Shane O'Rourke, who completed the full 70 minutes, showed good form for the hosts and contributed two points.
Meath finished the game stronger as the experienced Michael Burke and Graham Reilly steadied the ship with key points.
SCORERS -- Meath: D Lenihan 0-4 (2fs), C O'Sullivan 0-3 (2fs), D Bray, S Bray (1f), S O'Rourke 0-2 each, C Sheridan, P Gilsenan 0-1, M Burke, D McDonagh,G Reilly 0-1 each.
IT Carlow: B Hurley 0-5fs, L Boland 0-3fs, D White 0-2, K Mulvany, T Durnin 0-1 each.
MEATH -- C McHugh; C Young, S Curran, D McQuillan; S Kenny, B Power, P Gilsenan; C Sheridan, S O'Rourke; C O'Sullivan, D McDonagh, P McKeever; D Bray, S Bray, D Lenihan. Subs: E Harrington for Curran, M Burke for Young, D Larkin for S Bray (all h/t), G Reilly for McKeever (48), D Dalton for Kenny (61), D Tobin for Sheridan (64).
IT CARLOW -- R Sansom; A Nolan, C Lawlor, P Crowley; E Lynch, M Mangan, K McGrath; B Kinahan, D White; E Walsh, C Reynolds, K Mulvany; L Boland, T Durnin, B Hurley. Subs: T Shiel for McGrath (24), J King for Lawlor (25), J Dillon for Boland (59), S Carty for Lynch (66), N Kane for Kinahan (67), M Gunning for Reynolds (69).
REF -- A Nolan (Wicklow)