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Derry sink Lakemen

LAST season's Division 2 champions Derry maintained their unbeaten start to life in the top flight after a brace of early goals provided the platform for a 3-16 to 0-12 win over Westmeath at Celtic Park.

The hosts gave youth their chance, but some of the experienced heads also came to the fore, with Seán Leo McGoldrick and captain Mark Lynch both giving powerful displays throughout. Westmeath opened the scoring thanks to a John Heslin point after 70 seconds. However, Heslin's score was the only time the visitors were ahead on the scoreboard.

The Lakesiders' defence was left exposed on countless occasions and Derry responded to Heslin's early effort with two quick-fire goals.

Both arrived in the fourth minute, with Ciarán McFaul setting up Cailean O'Boyle for the first. From the kick-out, Derry again took control and Benny Heron fired to the net for a 2-0 to 0-1 lead after just four minutes.

Brian McIvor's charges led by 2-7 to 0-6 at the break and Derry pushed it out to 3-11 to 0-9 after McGuckin netted their third goal.

The visitors saw Dessie Dolan's 50th-minute goal effort come off the posts, while David Duffy and Heslin both shot wide in the closing quarter, before Derry sealed victory with a late McGoldrick point.