Armagh hurlers fell to a third defeat in their Division 2A campaign, but they can be pleased with a much improved performance against Aontroim, heading into their final game against Ceatharlach on Sunday 26 March.
Conor McCann, Ciarán Clarke and Eoghan Campbell got the Saffrons off the mark early on, but two scores from Cahal Carvill and a converted free from David Carvill had the sides level at 0-3 apiece. Both sides held one point leads, first Armagh after a Carvill free, then Antrim with Clarke capitalising in a bad mistake in the Armagh rearguard and Conor McKinley. Armagh hit the next three scores with Dylan McKenna and one apiece for the Carvill cousins, but Antrim were soon celebrating after the first green flag of the game with the goal finished well by Clarke. Antrim pushed on after the goal with three scores from Conor McKinley and another two from Clarke. With half time approaching, Armagh suffered a blow when Stephen Renaghan picked up an injury.
Half time: Ard Mhacha 0-7 Aontroim 1-8
The second half opened with an early score for Danny Magee, who replaced Renaghan before half time. David Carvill and Ciarán Clarke traded scores before Magee fed a pass trough to Cahal Carvill to finish to the net and bring the sides level at 1-9 apiece. Carvill added another score , but Antrim settled after that for a period of dominance that saw eight consecutive points from the Glensmen. Second half substitute Déaglán Murphy stood out with two from play and three from frees. James McNaughton was just on the field when he fired over for a point and other scores came from Conor McKinley and Conor Johnston. Armagh looked to have put an end to the Antrim purple patch when Cahal Carvill hit his second three pointer, when he pulled on a ball that dropped in from a Nathan Curry free, to bring the score to 2-10 to 1-17. However, just seconds later Antrim’s Conor McCann hit the net at the other end and Murphy added another for Antrim. The final score went to Caily Gorman to reduce the gap to seven.
Full time Ard Mhacha 2-11 Aontroim 2-18
Armagh sit at the foot of the table alongside London heading into the final game of the league campaign.
Armagh: Simon Doherty, Ciarán Clifford, Artie McGuinness, David Bridges, John Corvan, Nathan Curry, Tiarnán Nevin, Stephen Renaghan, Connor Devlin, Dylan McKenna 0-1, Eoin McGuinness, David Carvill 0-5f, Cahal Carvill 2-3, Ryan Gaffney, Conor Corvan
Subs used: Danny Magee 0-1, Odhrán Curry, Peter McKearney, Caily Gorman 0-1