Offaly and Kerry enjoy big wins as Higgins captains Mayo hurlers to victory

OFFALY OVERCAME a slow start to defeat Meath by 16 points in today’s Division 2A  Allianz Hurling League opener.

Offaly found themselves a point behind at the first-half water break after missing plenty of chances. They led by 2-13 to 0-7 at half-time and another scoring burst in the third quarter put them in control.

The Faithful County, who suffered a shock Christy Ring Cup semi-final loss to Down last winter, hit the net through Oisin Kelly, Adrian Hynes and Shane Kinsella in the 3-25 to 3-9 win.

Eoghan Cahill top-scorer for Michael Fennelly’s side with 0-12, Michael Duignan’s son Brian clipped over a brace and experienced forward Shane Dooley arrived off the bench to add a score in the closing stages.

Trailing by four points early in the second-half, Kerry gave themselves plenty to do before they saw off Down by 4-18 to 0-19 also in Division 2A.

Maurice O’Connor grabbed two goals for the Kingdom and Shane Nolan posted 1-6 in the 11-point win.

Elsewhere in Division 2A, Carlow ran out comfortable 3-19 to 0-17 winners over Wicklow in Tom Mullally’s first game in charge.

Marty Kavanagh bagged two goals and Ross Smithers added another for the Barrowsiders.

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In Division 2B, Donegal beat Roscommon by two points, 1-13 to 1-11, and former football star Keith Higgins captained Mayo to a 0-20 to 1-15 win against Derry.

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