Tuesday 24 January 2017

Campbell's late point seals precious victory

Armagh 1-10 Fermanagh 0-12

Published 28/02/2016 | 02:30

27 February 2016; Sean Quigley, Fermanagh, in action against Charlie Vernon, Armagh. Allianz Football League, Division 2, Round 3, Armagh v Fermanagh, Athletic Grounds, Armagh. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
27 February 2016; Sean Quigley, Fermanagh, in action against Charlie Vernon, Armagh. Allianz Football League, Division 2, Round 3, Armagh v Fermanagh, Athletic Grounds, Armagh. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
Fermanagh's Eoin Donnelly tries to evade Armagh's Aaron Findon Photo: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
Fermanagh manager Peter McGrath Photo: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
Armagh's Miceal McKenna scores a point despite the efforts of Fermanagh's Niall Cassidy Photo: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE

They lived dangerously at times but somehow Armagh managed to hold on and pirate a last-gasp victory over Fermanagh in this dour, tempestuous Allianz League Division Two encounter last night.

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A towering point from Stefan Campbell, his fifth of the game, in the dying embers of injury-time gave Kieran McGeeney's side a precious victory that could potentially help cement their bid to stay clear of relegation.

It was heartbreak for Fermanagh but on the night Armagh's raw courage and rugged staying power served them well.

Armagh looked sprightly and inventive in the opening 15 minutes and a brace of early points from Campbell and Colm Watters set the tone for a sustained bout of pressure.

With Fermanagh confined to a solitary point from a Sean Quigley free in the opening quarter, it was the home side who made all the running.

And they made a significant breakthrough in the 15th minute when Campbell pivoted smartly after taking delivery of a deft pass from the impressive Michael McKenna before drilling home a superb goal.

At 1-3 to 0-1 Armagh were looking comfortable and when Campbell swooped for his second point, their confidence was enhanced.

But Fermanagh struck two telling points in the 22nd and 24th minutes when the Corrigan brothers Tomas and Ruairi were on target, the latter's score proving his team's first from play.

When McKenna posted a fine point in the 30th minute he appeared to have restored Armagh's stability but it was Peter McGrath's side who finished the half strongly with Quigley and Paddy Reihill steering over points that left the home side clinging to a more slender lead (1-5 to 0-6).

But the final ten minutes saw the sides trade points on three occasions before Campbell took a centre-stage role to hoist over his spectacular winner.

Scorers - Armagh: S Campbell 1-5 (3f), C Watters 0-1, M McKenna 0-3, N Grimley 0-1. Fermanagh: T Corrigan 0-5 (3f), S Quigley 0-3 (3f), A Breen 0-2, R Corrigan 0-1, P Reihill 0-1

Armagh: M McNeice; S Heffron, C Vernon, A Mallon; S Forker, A Forker, M Shields; A Findon, N Grimley; S Campbell, M McKenna, S Connell, C Watters, C O'Hanlon, A Murnin. Subs: G McParland for Murnin (19), T Kernan for O'Hanlon (30), N McConville for Kernan BC (35), J Morgan for Watters (43) BC, J McElroy for Grimley (54), J Feeney for McConville (63).

Fermanagh: C Snow; M Jones, C Cullen, N Cassidy; P Reihill, J McMahon, A Breen; E Donnelly, D Kelly; B Mulrone, R Jones, K Connor; R Corrigan, S Quigley, T Corrigan. Subs: R O'Callaghan for Kelly (55), P McGovern for Reihill (57), D Teague for Kane (65), E McManus for R Corrigan (69).

Referee: Cormac Reilly (Meath)

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