Whitecross 1-12 Tir na nOg 4-12
Three second half goals from Tir na nOg saw them open their championship account with a nine-point win over Whitecross.
Goals win games and that was certainly the case in Whitecross, as the game was tighter than the scoreline suggested.
A first half goal from Conan Power kept the home side at arm’s length, but Whitecross were well in the game.
That major was the difference at the halfway stage and ending into the final quarter, the gap was two.
But goals from Oisin Conaty and substitute Oran Power fired Tir na nOg nine ahead by the full-time whistle.
Both sides started brightly and were tied after 14 minutes, before Power’s three-pointer put the hosts ahead.
Jamie McAleenan traded scores with Cormac Vallely, while Conaty and McAleenan split the posts for the Portadown men.
Whitecross nailed three on the trot, with Cathal McSherry, Eamon Reavey and Liam Mackin all scoring.
But Tir na nOg finished the half strongly with two Carlos Piers points and another from Conaty. That put them 1-6 to 0-6 up at the break.
Aodhan Lynch and McAleenan traded scores after the turnaround. Conor McCormac and Conaty did likewise with Vallely and Aidan Finnegan.
Conaty’s first major of the day opened up some daylight, but Whitecross replied instantly. Full forward Joe Starkey punched home a goal to keep Whitecross in touch.
But Tir na nOg pulled away once again, with that man Conaty raising another green flag for his side.
Conaty added two more points before Oran Power rattled the net for Tir na nOg’s fourth three-pointer.
Whitecross had another goal chance themselves, but McSherry missed from the spot. He did convert a free shortly after, however.
Oran Power slammed over a long-range effort from a placed ball while Finnegan claimed the final score of the day.