Despite making most of the running in this hoganstand.com SFC Group C round two clash at Trim on Friday evening Na Fianna had to force a draw with O'Mahonys
O'Mahonys ........ 2-12
Na Fianna ........ 2-12
Last year's runners-up made most of the running here but needed Daniel Queeney's injury-time pointed free to salvage something from the fixture.
O'Mahonys were six points (1-4 to 2-7) in arrears at the break having been nine points off the pace in the opening quarter.
David Nelson's men gradually trimmed the interval deficit before hitting the front in the 58th minute.
Ruairi O Coileain finished with 1-6, half of the champions tally. Stephen Bray posted a hat-trick of points from play. The hard-working Cathal Smyth sole score arrived in the 35th minute and left just a goal between the sides.
By the 45th minute the gap was down to just two points when O Coileain registered from play with assistance from Darragh Smyth, Cathal Smyth and Shane Gillespie.
Things got even better for the champions when O Coileain landed a free.
A positive Na Fianna response seemed to restore the balance in their favour. Fergal Foran's men posted a hat-trick of points with sub Colin Ryan completing the sequence to leave it 2-11 to 1-10 after 50 minutes.
Two O Coileain frees halved O'Mahonys' deficit. The holders hit the front for the only time in the game when Shane Gillespie netted in the 58th minute with Cathal Smyth and Rory Maguire assisting. It took Daniel Queeney's aforementioned stoppage time free to salvage something for Na Fianna
Backed by a not insignificant breeze blowing from the town end, Na Fianna took the game to the champions from the off. The Baconstown-Enfield outfit posted two wides before Daniel Queeney pointed them in front four minutes in.
The first of two goals in four minutes quickly followed. Conor Downey and Dalton McDonagh played supporting roles for James Geagan to fire home the first.
Jamie Queeney netted the second with assistance from McDonagh. By the 13th minute, Na Fianna were nine points clear with further scores from McDonagh, Barry Clancy and Daniel Queeney. The latter score a well-fligthed free from the right wing with the left boot.
Those nine points (2-3) without reply in seven first-quarter minutes seemed to set Na Fianna on course for victory over the holders. The Baconstown-Enfield club looked good to repeat their win over O'Mahonys in the 2002 IFC at this venue.
O'Mahonys were boosted early in the second quarter when Ruairi O Coileain netted a penalty at the town end. It was awarded for a foul on Shane Gillespie.
The sides shared six points over the remainder of the half. A David Bray pointed free - awarded for a foul on Alan Forde - completed the first-half scoring. It left Na Fianna 2-7 to 1-4 ahead at the break.
The Keegan Cup holders outscored Na Fianna by 1-8 to 0-4 before Na Fianna's top scorer salvaged something for last year's runners-up.
O'Mahonys - Marcas Brennan; Darragh Smyth, Niall McKeigue, Darragh Maguire; Brian Dillon, James O'Reilly, Gary O'Brien; Damien Moran, Conor Finnegan; Ruairi O Coileain (1-6, 1-0 pen, 0-4 fs), Stephen Bray (0-3), Alan Forde (0-1); Shane Gillespie (1-0), David Bray (0-1 f), Cathal Smyth (0-1). Subs - Cormac McGuinness for C Finnegan (24), Rory Maguire for Forde (41), Henry Finnegan for D Bray (42), Andy Leech for McKeigue (bc 49).
Na Fianna - Shane Geraghty; Johnny Baldwin, Christy Cosgrave, James Geagan (1-1); Michael Farley, Anthony Neary, Conor Downey; Ollie Lewis (0-1), Daniel Queeney (0-5, 4fs); Peter Slevin, Jamie Queeney (1-0), Ethan Devine; Barry Clancy (0-2), Dalton McDonagh (0-2, 1f) , Harrison Silke. Subs - Colin Ryan (0-1) for Farley (7), Barry Slevin for Geogan (53 bc), Dean Barrett for Devine (58).
Referee - Richard Morris (Blackhall Gaels).