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Cool Boden see off Vins

BALLYBODEN ST ENDA'S 0-15, ST VINCENT'S 0-10 - County champions Ballyboden St Enda's got their campaign off to a positive start following a comfortable 0-15 to 0-10 win over St Vincent's in their Dublin SHC 'A' Group C encounter at Parnell Park on Saturday evening.

Despite not firing on all cylinders, 'Boden always held the upperhand in a contest that failed to ignite throughout and although St Vincent's narrowed their deficit to five points with 10 minutes remaining, they never looked likely to complete their comeback.

There were positives to derive for the Marino men through the performance at full-back by Willie Lowry while John Hetherton looked lively in attack in addition to chipping over two fine scores.

They proved immaterial however as St Enda's found scores easier to find with Paul Ryan accounting for over half of his side's tally with eight points while Emmet Carroll continued his rejuvenation with three second-half scores.

Simon Lambert handed the holders the perfect start, executing a glorious sideline cut for the game's opening score in the second minute and he followed that up with another classy point soon after as Boden opened up impressively.

Eoghan Dromgoole replied for St Vincent's in the sixth minute but despite enjoying a fair share of possession, they were held scoreless for the ensuing 15 minutes as Ryan tagged on three frees to add to a long-range strike from Niall McMorrow.

In the 21st minute, Cian McBride ended Vinnies' barren spell and although Tomás Connolly landed a '65' soon after, three further Ryan placed balls and a lovely score from the impressive Stephen O'Connor pushed Boden to a wind-assisted 0-10 to 0-3 interval lead.

Any hopes of a St Vincent's comeback were quickly dispelled upon the restart with Carroll and Ryan sharing three points from play to leave nine points between the sides by the 36th minute.

There was further cause for cheer for the Firhouse Road supporters as Conal Keaney entered the fray soon after as Boden's strength in depth was illustrated through his introduction and that of David O'Connor, with the former giving an understandably rusty showing given his lengthy lay-off.

Hetherton and Connolly narrowed the deficit as the half progressed but Boden looked dangerous on the counter-attack with Carroll denied a goal by a brave block by Paddy Clerkin in the 59th minute.

At the opposite end, Hetherton shot narrowly wide when partially hooked entering injury-time with McBride's late score of mere consolation to St Vincent's, who should gain some momentum for the remaining group games from their encouraging performance.

Scorers - Ballyboden St Enda's: P Ryan 0-8 (0-6f, 0-1 '65'), E Carroll 0-3, S Lambert 0-2 (0-1 sideline), N McMorrow, S O'Connor 0-1 each. St Vincent's: T Connolly 0-5 (0-3 '65', 0-2f), J Hetherton, C McBride 0-2, E Dromgoole 0-1.

Ballyboden St Enda's: G Maguire; D Sweeney, T Sweeney, S Nagle; S Hiney, S Nolan, D Curran; M Travers, S O'Connor; J Doody, S Lambert, N McMorrow; P Ryan, C McCormack, E Carroll. Subs: C Keaney for Doody (38), D O'Connor for Nolan (55).

St Vincent's: P Clerkin; R Pocock, W Lowry, R Treanor; N Bishop, C Billings, C Harney; M Chawke, D Connolly; S Barrett, C McBride, J Hetherton; E Drumgoole, T McGrane, T Connolly. Subs: K Connolly for Barrett (40), S Connolly for Drumgoole (43), A Moore for McGrane (58).

Referee: P Behan (Trinity Gaels).