Kildare 0-11 Derry 0-13
Derry showed plenty of steel to maintain their perfect start to the NFL Division 2 season while also inflicting a first defeat on Kildare in Newbridge today.
Kildare had the upper hand for the opening 25 minutes or so thanks to the dominance of their midfield sector, with Hugh Lynch in particular proving effective.
Derry’s backs struggled to cope with the flow of possession heading their direction, with former minor star Fionn Dowling showing very well and the ultra-reliable Johnny Doyle making his usual contribution.
The captain converted two frees to go with Padraig O’Neill’s opener to give his side a three point advantage and it was the 20th minute before Derry could respond courtesy of a Paddy Bradley free.
Dowling shot a sensational point two minutes later from a very tight angle but with Derry managing to pick up more of the breaks around the middle, the outstanding Conleth Gilligan began to prosper.
The Ballinderry man converted a free and a 45 before also adding a wonderful point and with Bradley adding another score from play they led at the break by 0-7 to 0-6 with the wind at their backs in the second half.
And though Kildare resumed in decent fashion, with Doyle kicking a brace of points, Derry hit back with three, all from the boot of Gilligan. When he kicked his sixth of the afternoon, the visitors were four points clear.
The expected Lilywhite onslaught came in the final 10 minutes, with Doyle and Alan Smith halving the deficit with seven minutes still remaining, but despite an added three minutes of time, they could make no further imprint on the scoreboard.
Derry: M Conlan; B McCallion, K McCloy, D McBride; M Drumm, B McGoldrick, G O’Kane; PJ McCloskey, N Holly; D Mullan, SL McGoldrick 0-1, M Lynch 0-1; C McGoldrick, P Bradley 0-3(2fs), C Gilligan 0-7(3fs, 1 45). Subs: J Conway for Holly blood (6-11); J Kielt 0-1 for Mullan (18); C Kielt for Drumm (38); C O’Boyle for C McGoldrick (63); E McGuckian for Lynch (64).
Kildare: S Connolly; H McGrillen, M Foley, T O’Neill; E Bolton, E Callaghan, D Whyte, H Lynch, P O’Neill 0-1; B Flanagan, E O’Flaherty, K Cribbin; A Smith 0-1, J Doyle 0-7(4fs), F Dowling 0-2. Subs: R Sweeney for Whyte (ht); A Mac Lochlainn for T O’Neill (ht); J Kavanagh for O’Flaherty (57).
Referee: S Doyle (Wexford).