Fermanagh got their NFL Division Four campaign off to a perfect start yesterday with victory over Carlow in Dr. Cullen Park.
The win is the perfect boost for the Ernesiders ahead of Saturday night’s encounter with Longford at Brewster Park as they look to make an immediate return to Division Three after last season’s relegation.
Fermanagh led 0-06 to 0-02 at half-time and they were able to increase that during the second-half with James Sherry bagging a goal as they ran out seven point victors, 1-10 to 0-06.
Terry O’Flanagan opened the scoring for Fermanagh from a free before Ed Finegan levelled matter with a point from play.
The Ernemen though were the more purposeful side throughout the game and Paul Ward, who was a constant threat to the Carlow defence, fisted over before Tomas Corrigan and O’Flanagan tagged on further points to make it 0-04 to 0-01.
Carlow had a goal chance in the 15th minute, but Brendan Murphy saw his shot rattle the post.
Darragh Foley did pull a point back for Carlow, but Fermanagh finished the half strongly with James Sherry and Paul Ward registering excellent scores to put them four ahead at the break.
A converted ’45 by JJ Smyth and a free from Foley saw Carlow reduce the deficit to two points.
However, Fermanagh soon regained the upperhand with Barry Mulrone starting and finishing a move for the best point of the game.
Foley responded for Carlow, but Corrigan landed a free before James Sherry struck the Fermanagh goal. Substitute Chris O’Brien fed Ward and he played the ball across the goal for Sherry to tuck into the net soccer style to make it 1-08 to 0-05.
O’Flanagan and O’Brien were to add late scores for Fermanagh as they stretched their advantage.
Foley then knocked over Carlow’s last score in the closing minutes, but this was little more than a consolation point as Fermanagh finished up winners by seven points.
Carlow: O’Reilly; Nolan,Redmond, Kavanagh; Curran, Bulger, Cashin; Murphy, Foley (0-4); Finegan (0-1), Gannon, Kelly; Mullins, Smyth (0-1), Walsh. Subs: Molloy for Nolan, Pender for Murphy, Rut for Gannon, Minchin for Kelly, Banbrick for Finegan.
Fermanagh: J. McGrath; Bogue, Owens, Jones; McCusker, Mulrone (0-1), P. Sherry; J. Sherry (1-1), Brady; P. McGrath, Cassidy, McElroy, O’Flanagan (0-3), Corrigan (0-2), P. Ward (0-2). Subs: O'Brien for Cassidy (48), Connolly for McElroy (48), Little for O'Flanagan (60), Quigley for P Sherry (63), C Flaherty for P McGrath (70).
Referee: D O'Mahoney (Tipperary).