Kilrush 1-14 St. Patrick's 0-6
Kilrush more or less had District rivals St. Patrick's at arm's length from the get-go and occasionally caught the eye on the way to opening their Greenstar Under-20 football Division 4A campaign with an impressive win at a sunny Camolin on Saturday.
Indeed, from the moment their will-of-the-wisp wing-forward Seán Byrne opened the scoring after a mere 37 seconds, they were never headed thereafter as the under-performing hosts struggled.
Byrne had doubled his personal tally after a minute before Stuart Byrne, one of two isolated Craanford players lining out for St. Patrick's, was involved in Fergal Maguire kicking the St. Patrick's opener on three minutes.
Remarkably, that was as close as they would get to the eventual winners, who rattled the game's only goal after ten minutes when Ned O'Neill knocked Darragh Kinsella's under-hit free down for himself and half-volleyed to the corner of the net to stretch the difference to 1-3 to 0-1.
Cian Hogan ('45) and Andy Doyle (free) pegged back a couple of points for St. Pat's, but a neat brace from Conor Byrne before the break saw Kilrush sitting pretty at 1-6 to 0-4 by half-time.
The losers will be disappointed not to have troubled the scoreboard again until the final three minutes of normal time, by which stage Kilrush had pulled well out of sight.
That winning charge was helped by a run of seven points without reply, including three from Ned O'Neill (two frees), a well-crafted score from the outside of his boot among a double for Darragh Kinsella, and Seán Byrne's third and final score.
Stuart Byrne and Maguire finally ended St. Patrick's second-half lethargy, but hard-working midfielder Seán Bookey had the final say with a point his enterprise deserved to round off a one-sided victory for the Ballyroebuck lads.
Kilrush: Conor Kehoe; Paddy Sharry, Garrett O'Connor, Pádraig O'Rourke; Ciarán Kenny, Jim Sharry, Peter O'Neill; Seán Bookey (0-1), John Kavanagh; Seán Byrne (0-3), Ned O'Neill (1-3, 0-2 frees), Seán Kirwan (0-2); Jack Nolan, Darragh Kinsella (0-3, 1 free), Conor Byrne (capt., 0-2). Subs. - Liam Sheehan for O'Rourke (51), John Doyle for Nolan (52), Dean Lancaster for P. Sharry (53).
St. Patrick's: Jack Quinn (capt.); Cormac Kavanagh, Joe Cousins, Brendan Byrne; Michael Whelan, Paul McDonald, Ollie Gahan; Michael Carroll, Pádraig Redmond; Stuart Byrne (0-2), Cian Hogan (0-1 '45), Fergal Maguire (0-2); Vinny Gahan, Andrew Doyle (0-1 free), Conor Morris. Subs. - Dylan Kavanagh for Redmond (HT), Michael Doyle for Kavanagh (HT), Darragh Cummins for V. Gahan (37), Darragh Chisholm for O. Gahan (42), Vinny Gahan for Quinn (51).
Referee: Ian Plunkett (Marshalstown-Castledockrell).