Bank of Ireland Dr McKenna Round 3
- Cavan 1-14 Armagh 1-9
CAVAN qualified for the Dr McKenna Cup semi-finals for the first time since 2016 after blitzing Armagh with a storming second-half display.
Mickey Graham’s men, who will face Tyrone in the last four on Saturday, greatly impressed as they ran riot after the restart to win pulling up in what was a fiery clash which attracted approximately 3,000 fans to a rain-drenched Kingspan Breffni.
In notching their comfortable third-round victory, the Breffni men played a slow-to-the-boil game to overcome an Armagh crew that underwent 14 changes in the second half, including 11 subs at the interval.
Cavan were the more industrious and potent side early on and a great solo goal from rookie Ryan O’Neill helped leave the Orchard county trailing by 0-1 to 1-3 with 11 minutes on the clock.
Cavan failed to consolidate their turbo-charged start though and classy points apiece by Conor O’Neill (13) and Aodhán Nuinseann (14) rocked the hosts back on their heels.
Wind-aided Armagh went on to dominate the next 15 minutes and points by Jarly Óg Burns (28) and Rory Grugan’s free (29) put the rejuvenated visitors ahead for the first time in the match.
But, after a typically incisive Dara McVeety burst out of defence, a free resulted and Oisín Brady fired over to make it 1-6 to 0-9 at the interval.
Cavan were in the box seat in the third quarter and as the play became more ragged, the hosts’ lead increased with Cian Madden and a gem from Tiarnan Madden (54) making it an eight-point game.
Armagh continued to play a poor second fiddle with their wholesale changes making for an incohesive, leaderless opponent for the increasingly gung-ho hosts.
Armagh laboured to make any inroads in a tetchy final quarter but substitute Oisín Conaty burst through on the endline before blasting home a 67th-minute goal.
However, Armagh’s only score of the second half had the word consolation stamped all over it.
Cavan Raymond Galligan (0-2, 2f); J Cooke, C Moynagh, E Finnegan; C Brady, D McVeety (0-3), T Madden (0-1); K Clarke, E Maguire; G Smith, O Brady (0-3,3f), O Kiernan (0-1); M Reilly (0-1), R O’Neill (1-0), C Madden.
Subs B Boylan (0-1) for O Kiernan (48); B O’Rourke (0-2, 1f) for M Reilly (51);
D Wilson for J Cooke (51); Ryan Donohoe for E Maguire (51); D Brady for R O’Neill (56);
C Rehill for C Brady (57); O Kiernan (Denn) for C Moynagh (58); T N Hoffman for K Clarke (68)
Armagh E Rafferty; G McCabe, A McKay, R Finn; J Óg Burns (0-1), B McCambridge,
C O’Neill (0-1); S Sheridan, S Campbell (0-1); J Sheridan, C Cumiskey, T Kelly; R Grugan (0-3, 2f), C Turbitt (0-1), A Nuinseann (0-2, 1f)
Subs S Magill for E Rafferty; N Smith for C O’Neill; C Mackin for A McKay; J Hall for
B McCambridge; R McQuillan for J Óg Burns; R O Neill for S Campbell. N McConville for C Cumiskey; C McConville for T Kelly; J Kiernan for R Grugan; S McPartland for C Turbitt; C Grimley for A Nuinseann (all at half-time); L Rice for A McKay (62); O Conaty (1-0) for G McCabe (62); K Doyle for S Sheridan (63)
Referee D Boylan (Monaghan)