Rory Grugan seals the deal as Armagh pip Donegal

Orchard County earn place in McKenna Cup final after Omagh win

Armagh captain Rory Grugan scored the winning point against Donegal in the Mckenna Cup semi-final. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Armagh captain Rory Grugan scored the winning point against Donegal in the Mckenna Cup semi-final. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

 

Armagh 0-14 Donegal 1-10

A physically stronger and more experienced Armagh side enjoyed a deserved one-point victory over youthful Donegal in a well contested Dr McKenna Cup semi-final in Omagh on Sunday.

Team captain Rory Grugan was the Orchard hero as he arrowed through the Donegal defence before striking the winning point with the outside of the boot in the 69th minute.

Donegal had a late chance to get an equaliser in added time but Ryan McHugh gave away possession and the chance was lost.

Armagh played into a strong breeze in the opening half and were well worth their half-time lead of 0-9 to 1-5

Donegal looked lethargic, even though they led by 0-4 to 0-1 and by 1-4 to 0-4 at different stages in the match.

Their goal came in the 24th minute when Niall O’Donnell and Caolan McGonigle combined to set up Jason McGee for a palmed goal to the net.

Armagh had some fine points from Grugan, Stefan Campbell and the excellent Niall Grimley.

Donegal’s man-of-the-match Jamie Brennan, Michael Langan and Ciarán Thompson were on target for the losers.

Donegal played much better in a lower scoring second half and had the bulk of the possession, but were reluctant to shoot into a strong breeze.

ARMAGH: B Hughes; C Mackin, R Kennedy, J Morgan; M Shields, B Donaghy, A Forker; S Sheridan, N Grimley (0-4, four frees); J Hall (0-2), R Grugan (0-4, three frees), R McShane; S Campbell (0-2), R O’Neill (0-2) J Clarke.

Subs: G McCabe for A Forker (16 mins), J Grugan for S Campbell (34), J Og Burns for R O’Neill (53) J McElroy for R McShane (58), C Vernon for J Hall (63).

DONEGAL: M A McGinley; C Ward, B McCole, C Morrison; R McHugh, T McClenaghan, M McElhinney; H McFadden. J McGee (1-1); P Brennan, N O’Donnell, C McGonigle (0-1); C Thompson (0-2, one free) M Langan (0-2, one free), J Brennan (0-4, one free).

Subs: E Doherty for C Morrison (h/t) P Mogan for T McClenaghan, M O’Reilly for N O’Donnell, O Gallen for M McElhinney (all 55 mins).

Referee: P Faloon (Down).

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