Jack Sheedy’s side had five points to spare after a workmanlike performance to put their championship campaign back on track.
It wasn’t easy, and it wasn’t convincing, from the Newbridge men as they trailed by a point at half-time before overpowering Towers in the closing stages with four unanswered points. Kildare senior panellist David Whyte was instrumental at midfield for the winners and his seven point haul, including six frees, was vital to their victory.
Their rivals, Sarsfields, had an easier route to victory against a disappointing Naas side. When Declan McKenna netted the Sash’s goal in the 39th minute it took them into a commanding lead. It was 1-14 to 0-3 with 19 minutes remaining when Naas sub Richie Ormsby was sent off. Strangely that seemed to energise Naas as they scored 1-9 before the finish, Eamon Callaghan with the goal, to reduce the deficit to three, which could be crucial if the quarter-finalists are decided on score difference.
There was a huge row at the end of Allenwood’s victory over Leixlip (0-9 to 0-6) where Jason Judge was shown a straight red card but John Doyle’s accuracy was enough to see the Sky Blues over the line, as Doyle hit 0-5 (3fs) to secure victory.
Athy’s Darroch Mulhall was the man-of-the-match as he bagged 1-5 during an impressive six point (2-13 to 0-13) victory for the south Kildare men against Carbury. Athy were in charge for most of the game and a second goal from Dan O’Keefe in the closing stages sealed their win and a place in the quarter-finals.
Struggling Kilcock made life difficult for 2008 champions Celbridge before the Bridge finally got on top by two points. A first half goal from Jason O’Brien gave Kilcock a 1-5 to 0-7 lead at the break but Celbridge took command after the interval thanks to Davy Wright’s accuracy from frees to win by 0-14 to 1-9.
In a cracking contest in Newbridge, St Laurence’s edged out Ballymore by two points (1-12 to 1-10). Padraig O’Neill was superb for the Larries, netting their goal, but Ballymore almost snatched it at the finish as they kicked five unanswered points. Laurence’s, 2009 champions, showed character to hit three points in a row to win by two.
Clane put themselves back in contention for a quarter-final place with a three point win (1-11 to 0-11) over Suncroft thanks to a Cathal Geoghegan goal in the first half. Joe Gerry kicked an injury time winner for Maynooth as they scraped past St Kevin’s by 1-10 to 0-12 to themselves firmly in the running for a quarter-final spot. Kevin’s are heading for a relegation battle after three straight defeats.
* Round Four (3 September): Maynooth v Celbridge; Clane v Naas; Athy v Leixlip; Kilcock v Suncroft; Moorefield v Ballymore; Round Towers v Sarsfields; Allenwood v St Kevin’s; Carbury v St Laurence’s.