Nicky Rackard Cup
Donegal 3-13 Armagh 1-8
By Shaun Casey, The Sideline Eye
A disappointing second half display against Donegal knocked Armagh out of this seasons Nicky Rackard Cup.
The Orchard County only scored 1-2 after the break, Nathan Curry grabbing all the scores with a penalty and two frees.
Donegal on the other hand rattled the net three times during that second period to open up a gap too big to close.
The weather conditions were horrible and difficult to play in, meaning plenty of spilled possessions and mistakes on both sides.
They were evenly match before the short whistle sounded, and the sides were locked on six points each going into the break.
Danny Magee was a real livewire in the Armagh attack and the Sean Treacy’s man opened the scoring after 19 seconds.
Donegal replied through wing back Jack O’Loughlin while Davin Flynn matched Fionntain Donnelly’s point.
Flynn was proving a handful at full forward and he clipped over a brace to double the home sides advantage.
Stephen Renaghan cut the margin while Nathan Curry levelled the score, swinging over his first of the afternoon.
Curry doubled his personal tally with anther free after Magee, who could have had a goal earlier, was fouled.
Flynn, the dangerman, tagged on another two points before hoppling off the field of play due to an injury.
Conor Corvan slashed over a great score with the last point of the half, bouncing off a challenge and hitting over his sides sixth.
It was all to play for in the second half, but Donegal dominated the early exchanges and the first goal of the game helped them into a six-point lead.
Armagh were handed a lifeline when Corvan was hauled down inside the area and up stepped Curry to riffle the ball into the bottom corner.
Any hope of a revival was soon diminished as Donegal raised another great flag with the next attack to regain their six-point lead.
Curry slotted over a further two points from the dead ball, but it was all Donegal. In the end they had built up a ten-point winning margin.
It was a disappointing way for the season to end for Armagh, after showing good signs of progression throughout the year.
Donegal were the only side to defeat Padraig O’Connor’s side during the league, in the Division 3A final and remain the only team to have beaten them.
Team: Simon Doherty, Ciaran Clifford, Artie McGuinness, Odhran Curry, Kieran McKernan, Aaron Fox, Tiarnan Nevin, Paddy McBride, Stephen Renaghan (0-1), Fionntain Donnelly (0-1), Nathan Curry (1-4), Conor Corvan (0-1), Marty Moan, Eoin McGuinness, Danny Magee (0-1). Subs: Shaun Toal for F. Donnelly, Dylan McKenna for E. McGuinness, Connor Devlin for S. Renaghan.