THE dominance of Aidan O'Shea and the introduction of Darran O'Sullivan saw DIT edge past NUI Galway at windy Dangan yesterday.
Mayo midfielder O'Shea was outstanding throughout and Kerry All Star O'Sullivan kicked a point with his first touch to settle a nervy DIT. But they still needed late scores from David Givney and Jason Doherty to set up a second-round tie with NUI Maynooth next week.
"They are the little things. You'd hope every substitute can give you a little bit of momentum and a spark to carry you through and that's what happened. We have got lads there that are willing to die for this jersey and that's what we want," said DIT manager Sean Fox.
Four points in four minutes from Mark Collins, Doherty and a Bernard Allen brace put DIT in the ascendancy, but Cathal Freeman's point gave some hope to the Galway side at 0-5 to 0-2 at the break.
A Doherty free restored DIT's four-point cushion, but the home side had pulled level with eight minutes to go after points from Ciaran McDonald, Shane Nally and Kieran Murtagh.
But just as it seemed the home side would complete the unlikeliest of comebacks, DIT hit them with two quick points.
SCORERS – DIT: J Doherty 0-3 (1f), M Collins, B Allen (1f) 0-2 each, D O'Sullivan, D Givney 0-1 each. NUIG: K Murtagh 0-2f, C McDonald, S Nally (f), C Freeman, R Kiely, E Sheehy 0-1 each.
DIT – R Lambert; K O'Brien, B Menton, G O'Hare; A Nestor, N Devereaux, R Sheridan; A O'Shea, D Givney; M Reilly, M Collins, C Reddin; B Allen, T O'Connor, J Doherty. Subs: C Walsh for Sheridan (h-t), D O'Sullivan for Reilly (41), J McGrath for Reddin (53), S O'Connor for Allen (61).
NUIG – D O'Sullivan; G Sweeney, J Moore, K Crowe; C McDonald, R Kiely, E Troy; S Moran, E O hEochaidh; S Nally, F O Deasmunaigh, C Freeman; I Galvin, K Murtagh, E Sheehy. Subs: D Gavin for Moran (h-t), Cathal Brennan for Galvin (h-t), J Egan for Sheehy (42), C O'Halloran for Troy (53).
REF – M Duffy (Sligo).