Sherry just the tonic
FERMANAGH made a winning start to the campaign at Dr Cullen Park thanks to a James Sherry goal midway through the second half.
The Ulster side were pushed hard and needed defender Barry Owens at his usual best. The two-time All Star was immense in shutting down Thomas Walsh and Brendan Murphy.
Carlow trailed 0-6 to 0-2 at the break but two quick points from Darragh Foley gave them hope. However, in a five-minute spell in which Murphy went off with a suspected broken ankle, Sherry fired in a goal either side of Terry O'Flanagan and Tomas Corrigan points.
Mark Little came off the bench, fresh from his All-Ireland club IFC win the day before, to help his side see out the game.
Scorers -- Fermanagh: J Sherry 1-1, T O'Flanagan 0-3 (2f), T Corrigan (1f), P Ward 0-2 each B Mulrone, C O'Brien 0-1 each. Carlow: D Foley 0-4 (3f), JJ Smith (1f), E Finnegan 0-1 each.
Fermanagh -- J McGrath; N Bogue, B Owens, M Jones; P McCosker, B Mulrone, P Sherry; H Brady, J Sherry; P McGrath, N Cassidy, T McElroy; T O'Flanagan, T Corrigan, P Ward. Subs: C O'Brien for Cassidy (48), J Connolly for McElroy (48), M Little for O'Flanagan (60), C Quigley for P Sherry (63), C Flaherty for McGrath (70).
Carlow -- T O'Reilly; K Nolan, S Redmond, B Kavanagh; A Curran, T Bolger, P Cashin; B Murphy, D Foley; E Finnegan, S Gannon, A Kelly; C Mullins, JJ Smith, T Walsh. Subs: C Pender for Murphy (31), BJ Molloy for Nolan (h-t), E Ruth for Gannon (h-t), D Bambrick for Finnegan (55), W Minchin for Kelly (67).
Ref -- D O'Mahoney (Tipperary).