Carroll nets clincher
IT CARLOW 1-15
Athlone it 1-11
CARLOW overcame the shock of conceding a first-minute goal on home soil to bounce back and record a deserved victory, with Daithi Carroll netting the decisive score.
The visitors got off to a dream start when Cathal Shine was on hand to finish to the net following a defensive mistake.
However, the game swung in Carlow's direction when goalkeeper Ricky Keating moved smartly to his right to save Frank Burke's 23rd-minute penalty.
Carlow led 0-8 to 1-4 at the interval, and four points early in the second half stretched that lead, before Athlone battled back to draw level.
A great point from JJ Smith restored Carlow's lead, before quick-thinking Carroll hit the clinching goal after Darragh Foley's attempt for a point came back off an upright.
Scorers -- IT Carlow: D Carroll 1-6 (5f), B Brosnan 0-5 (1f), JJ Smith, C Rogers 0-2 each. Athlone IT: C Shine 1-1, N Dunne 0-3 (2f), F Reilly 0-3 (1f), C Garvey, E Hoare, B Connor, F Burke 0-1 each.
IT Carlow -- R Keating; C Boyle, J Kinahan, D Buckley; G Seaver, G Hanrahan, S George; C O'Donovan, K Mooney; D Foley, B Brosnan, S Gannon; C Rogers, JJ Smith, D Carroll. Subs: J Doyle for Seaver (19), F Smith for Carroll (57).
Athlone IT -- G Connaughton; M McCallon, C Duignan, C Garvey; A Rohan, P Bannon, M Mitchell; G Dennigan, E Hoare; N Dunne, B Connor, D Egan; I Coffey, C Shine, F Burke. Subs: J Reynolds for McCallon (h-t), F Reilly for Coffey (h-t), C Blake for Burke (53).
Ref -- C Costello (Offaly).