Antrim could have taken points from their first two League outings but they did so at the third attempt with a comprehensive eight-point victory away to Tipperary.
illed as a relegation four-pointer, Antrim led from Conor Stewart’s 14th-minute goal, while the point-taking of Pat Shivers, Marc Jordan, and Odhrán Eastwood ensured their lead was never in danger.
Tipp had 10 different scorers but only Jack Kennedy (0-5) scored more than once.
There was little urgency and many wides in the early stages. Antrim were the worst offenders on the latter count but they jumped ahead when Stewart claimed the opposition kick-out on the run and he rampaged all the way to blast home. 1-1 to 0-2.
Tipp’s stand-in captain Shane O’Connell was sin-binned on the half-hour and Antrim could’ve had a second goal as they began to carve Tipp open.
Michael O’Reilly deflected over an effort from Ruairí McCann (Creggan) before Ruairí McCann (Aghagallon) intercepted an O’Reilly kick-out from which Colm McLarnon was fouled for a penalty. The Creggan McCann stepped up but dragged the penalty wide.
Impressive wing-back Jordan brought his tally to two points and assisted two more, with Shivers blasting over when in on goal. 1-8 to 0-6 at the break.
Shivers scored two points within 90 seconds of the restart and Eastwood and Jordan took their tallies to 0-3 by the finish, while Jimmy Feehan denied Colum Duffin a first-touch goal.
They led by 12 at one stage but Tipp finished out with six of the final eight points, four from Kennedy.
Scorers – Tipperary: J Kennedy 0-5 (3f); E Moloney, K Fahey, P Feehan, T Doyle, M O’Shea, L McGrath (f), P Maher, D Leahy, M Kehoe 0-1 each. Antrim: P Shivers 0-4; C Stewart 1-0; M Jordan, O Eastwood 0-3 each; M Byrne (2f), R Murray (1f), R McCann (Creggan), D McEnhill 0-2 each; R McCann (Aghagallon) 0-1.
Tipperary: M O’Reilly 6; S O’Connell 6, J Feehan 6, C O’Shaughnessy 6; E Moloney 6, K Fahey 6, D Carew 6; P Feehan 7, L Boland 6; C Deely 6, J Kennedy 7, T Doyle 7; M O’Shea 6, L McGrath 6, P Maher 6. Subs: D Leahy 6 for Deely (h-t), M Kehoe 6 for Boland (h-t), D Brennan 6 for O’Shea (53), M Stokes 6 for McGrath (54), T Maher 6 for P Feehan (59).
Antrim: M Byrne 7; P Healy 8, R Boyle 7, J McAuley 7; O Lenehan 6, J Finnegan 6, M Jordan 8; K Small 7, C Stewart 8; C McLarnon 6, P Finnegan 7, R McCann (Creggan Kickhams) 7; P Shivers 7, R McCann (St Mary’s Aghagallon) 6, R Murray 6. Subs: O Eastwood 8 for Murray (30 inj), D McEnhill 7 for McLarnon (52), J Dowling 6 for Small (61), C Duffin 6 for Shivers (63), S McGarry for McCann (Aghagallon) (70).
Referee: B Griffin (Kerry).