A 50th-minute goal from Jack Galvin proved decisive as Westmeath hurlers battled to a hard-earned win against DCU in Kinnegad yesterday.
The home team had the wind in a dull first half, with Allan Devine and Rian McBride top scoring at either end. But Westmeath finished the half the stronger to lead by 0-8 to 0-7.
The game improved on the change of ends and the students nudged ahead again (0-9 to 0-8), with 40 minutes gone.
Westmeath then came to life and unanswered points from Devine, Joey Boyle and Eoin Price preceded Galvin's goal, when the ball broke kindly for him and he went on to beat his fellow countyman Robbie Gillen.
Westmeath looked the more likely winners from then on, but they had to withstand some late pressure from DCU, for whom midfielder McBride and centre half-back Padraig Foley excelled.
Scorers - Westmeath: A Devine 0-6 (2f), J Galvin 1-2, D Clinton 0-2, J Boyle, E Price, N Mitchell, P Lynam 0-1 each.
DCU: R McBride 0-7 (1f), K Doyle 0-3 (3f), P Foley, J O'Connor, L Fahey 0-1 each.
Westmeath - P Carroll; S Power, A McGrath, C Shaw; A Craig, A Clarke, G Greville; J Boyle, J Galvin; N Mitchell, B Murtagh, E Price; D Egerton, A Devine, D Clinton. Subs: A Cox for Greville (22), P Lynam for Power (inj, 52), W Casserly for Galvin (inj, 70 + 4).
DCU - R Gillen; M Heeney, S McCaw, G Bailey; A Maddock, P Foley, C Delaney; P O'Dea, R McBride; J O'Connor, J Byrne, L Fahey; D Staunton, K Doyle, AJ Murphy. Subs: T French for Bailey (h-t), M Daly for Doyle (51), C Doran for Heeney (66), B Hanlon for Murphy (66).
Ref - D Hughes (Carlow).