Thomastown United’s A team maintained their unbeaten start to season 2014/15 and pole position in the Premier Division, but had a battle on their hands to tame the Lions.
Played at a chilly Durrow, the visitors took the lead when skipper Andy Kavanagh hit the net after the half hour, but their hosts took just three minutes to equalise through Ben Wallace.
The deadlock lasted into the second half, but Thomastown went back in front when Nathan Sherry, forced off through injury last week against Evergreen, showed he was back to full fitness by scoring their second goal.
It was still a tight game, however, one in which United were only assured of all three points when defender C.J. Browne grabbed a third goal with 60 seconds of normal time remaining.
Results in Durrow and elsewhere mean that Thomastown have opened up a four-point lead at the summit, having taken 15 points from their five league games played to date.
The Lions have dropped to third place following that defeat, one point behind Newpark A, who had to settle for a share of the spoils following their 1-1 draw away to Bridge United A.
Having waited five matches for their first league win, Spa United made it two in a row when they beat Callan United A 3-1 on the Fair Green.
James Whelan bagged one from the penalty spot, while Gavin and Stephen McCarthy were also on target for the Johnstown men. John Mark Egan was on target for Callan, who have contrasting fortunes from Spa - they’ve now lost their last two games.
Bunch of fives
Eoin Vaughan was the man of the moment for Freshford, hitting Newpark B with a bunch of fives as Town joined the race for promotion from Division One.
Vaughan grabbed all five goals as James Farrell’s side beat the city men in Woodsgift, earning the three points that pushed them into a three-way tie for top spot.
Vaughan has been on a real hot streak for Freshford of late. His five on Sunday means he has scored nine goals in his last two matches!
Level with Freshford are Tullaroan and Thomastown United B. United had been hoping to extend their lead at the top - last week the club had two teams in top spot in the Premier and Division One tables - but their hopes were dented when they fell behind to Tullaroan’s opener.
Brian Donnelly penalty levelled matters for the ’Town, who are playing in one of the tightest competitions around.
With Fort beating Stoneyford, just two points separate the top six sides in the division.
Deen Celtic closed the gap on leaders Freebooters B in Division Two, but needed a solid comeback before doing so.
Ger Alley’s impressive goal gave Lions B a dream start in Castlecomer, but the hosts were back in contention when Richie Lynch drew them level.
Picking up play on half-way, Lynch drove at the Lions defence and drilled a cool finish into the bottom right corner of the net.
The sides looked set to share the points, but Jack Brennan netted the winner with 15 minutes remaining, showing a neat turn to slam home a powerful shot at the second attempt.
It was honours even in the city derby as Ormonde Villa and Evergreen C drew 0-0, a result that won’t have suited either side as they are joint bottom of the division on five points, one behind the Lions B.
With Bridge United B beating River Rangers 2-0 - a reverse of their last fixture, when the Rangers won 2-1 in Goresbridge - a gap of five points has now opened up between the bottom three and the remaining teams in the division.
Castlewarren Celtic continued their unbeaten start to the Division Three season, and how! Celtic secured their sixth win of the campaign, to add to their one draw, in spectacular fashion as they beat Freshford Town B 9-1 in Castlewarren.
Elsewhere, Callan United B got all three points after Thomastown United C gave them a walkover.
Meanwhile another Kilkenny team continued on their quest for some Leinster silverware. St Mary’s moved on in the Leinster Junior Shield with a 5-1 win over Woods United.
Martin Boki led the way with a hat-trick, while James Geoghegan and Damien Knox also chipped in with the goals that sent Eddie Culleton’s side marching on the next round.