Five converted John Heslin frees proved decisive in 14-man Westmeath’s 0-10 to 0-8 victory over Fermanagh at miserable Mullingar.
Considering the dreadful conditions, with the pitch just about passing an inspection this morning, it was no surprise that a poor match materialised, but both teams gave of their all and in the end it was the hosts who plundered the precious points, despite the 47th-minute dismissal of Luke Loughlin.
The winners led by seven to one at the break, John Heslin (2), Ronan O'Toole, David Lynch and Callum McCormack with the first five points, Heslin and Ray Connellan adding to their tally after Conall Jones opened the Ernemen’s account.
The visitors nailed three of the next five points and moved within two thanks to further scores from Ryan Jones (2) and Aidan Breen. Heslin’s fifth was cancelled out by a 70th-minute Jones free and the northerners squandered a host of chances, enabling Jack Cooney’s men to claim their second win of the campaign.
Westmeath - J Daly; J Smith, R Wallace, B Sayeh; P Holloway, K Maguire, J Dolan; D Corroon, R Connellan (0-2); K Daly, R O’Toole (0-1), D Lynch (0-1); C McCormack (0-1), J Heslin (0-5f), L Loughlin. Subs: S Duncan for C McCormack, A McGivney for P Holloway, T McDaniel for R O’Toole.
Fermanagh - J McGrath; J Cassidy, E Shiels, K McDonnell; D McCusker, D McGurn, Stephen McGullion (0-1); E Donnelly, R Jones (0-2); A Breen (0-2), U Kelm, C Corrigan; Shane McGullion (0-1), C Jones (0-2f), L McStravick. Subs: D Teague for L McStravick, M McCauley for E Shiels, E McManus for K McDonnell, N Cosgrove for D McGurn.
Referee - N Mooney.
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