Lavey 1-14 Killeshandra 2-8
Lavey held off a brave effort from Killeshandra tonight to ensure their passage to the quarter-finals of the senior championship at the top of group three.
Shane Tierney struck for 1-7 over the hour, leading the way for Kevin McDonnell's side at a damp Kingspan Breffni Park, as they built up a six-point lead at half-time before doing enough in the second-half to get over the line after the Leaguers had forced a nervy finish.
Conor McGearty's late goal kept the underdogs in the fight right up until the last whistle, but their opponents made sure not to concede another and saw out the victory to secure a berth in the last eight.
Tierney's scoring prowess had devastated Killeshandra in the opening stages of this contest, with the livewire corner-forward helping himself to 1-2 from play, including a fortuitous goal, as Gerard Smith and Ray Cullivan backed him up with singles to create a six-point lead for the New Inns men by the 12th minute.
After some fearlessness to get their ahead of 'keeper Conor Martin, Tomas O'Reilly hit the net in response to Tierney's major, halving the Leaguers' deficit, but they still struggled to come to terms with Lavey's number 13 as he added three more points (one from a free) before the interval.
Shane O'Reilly grabbed the town side's second point prior to Smith rattling the crossbar on the 20-minute mark, as a free from Karl Duke and two from Tierney left it at 1-8 to 1-2 at half-time.
Having stationed Shane O'Reilly at full-forward, Damien Keaney's heavily depleted side had discovered a lot more joy at the start of the second-half with 'Bosco' leading their revival, sending over a brace of points within the first six minutes of the resumption.
Sean McKiernan's second free of the night kept Killeshandra in their rhythm and when that man O'Reilly curled over another from 35 metres they were a mere two points adrift headed into the last quarter of an hour.
Lavey hit back with a score from Tierney, who 'one-twoed' with Duke for a path through, and they'd rattle off the next four scores via Ollie Smith, Tierney and Smith (2, 1 free) to regain control of the match.
Leaguers sub Eamon O'Reilly traded points with Aaron Smith to leave the difference at seven heading towards the closing stages and Killeshandra were given some life when Shane O'Reilly's point effort came down off the upright and McGearty pounced quickest to stuff the rebound to the net.
A casually stroked free from Aaron Brady made it a three-point game in injury-time and the Leaguers would have the chance to snatch a late draw with a 13-metre free sent into the square, where Lavey's defenders rooted out the danger to maintain their team's 100 per cent start in this competition.
Lavey: Conor Martin; Darren Monaghan, Fergal Smith, Joey Jordan; Stephen Jordan, Aaron Smith (0-1), Gerard Smith (0-3, 1f); Ray Cullivan (0-1), Dean Rutherford; Darren Jordan, Ollie Smith (0-1), Darragh Conaty; Shane Tierney (1-7, 1f), Karl Duke (0-1, 1f), Kevin Donohoe. Subs: David Conroy for D Jordan (20mins, inj), Emmet Brady for D Rutherford (55), Eoin Smith Brady for S Tierney (59).
Killeshandra: Jamie O'Rourke; Shane McGurren, Conor O'Reilly, Cillian O'Reilly; Padraig Sweeney, Aaron Brady (0-1, 1f), Sean McKiernan (0-2, 2f); Daniel Luby, Tomas O'Reilly (1-0); Adrian Martin, Shane O'Reilly (0-4), Austin Fitzpatrick; Kyle Duffy, Cyril Reilly, Conor McGearty (1-0). Subs: Ciaran Owens for C Reilly (HT), Eamon O'Reilly (0-1) for Owens (47).
Ref: Michael Lee (Drumalee)