Ballybay and Clontibret played out an entertaining and physical encounter in Pearse Brothers park on Sunday, with nothing to separate the sides at the full time whistle as it finished 1-09 a piece.
It was the home side who started the brighter, racing into a 4 point lead with points from Ciaran Galligan, Paul Finlay, Christopher Mc Guinness and Thomas Kerr.
Conor Mc Manus halved the deficit with 2 frees at the opposite end, with Ballybay quickly cancelling those out to lead again by 4 at the halt for the first water break.
Brian Greenan and Killian Lavelle again reduced it back to 2 points, but Shane Mc Guinness found the back of the net after good work from his brother Christopher to give his side a 1-06 to 5 point lead at the break.
Clontibret did get the perfect start to the 2nd half as Pauric Boyle was dragged down as he pounced on a rebounded effort into the square and Conor Mc Manus stepped up to take the penalty.
His effort was saved by Adam Counihan but Vincent Corey who was just after been introduced, was quickest to react to the ball breaking from the save and finished to the net to bring them back to 1 point with Conor Mc Manus leveling matters 2 minutes later with a free.
Further points from Mc Manus and David Savage give the County champions a 2 point lead as the game entered injury time, but 2 late efforts from Christopher Mc Guinness coupled with an earlier point from Colm Lennon ensured a share of the spoils.
Sean Mc Caffrey spoke to the Clontibret manager John Mc Entee after the final whistle