Murnin sows seeds of victory for Orchard
Armagh 1-15 Derry 0-14
Armagh maintained their push for promotion with a hard-earned victory over Derry at the Athletic Grounds on Saturday, but manager Kieran McGeeney is convinced that if they are to ascend to higher ground, they will have to do it the hard way.
"We have had recurring injuries and this is proving a setback. We lost Ethan Rafferty and Joe McElroy within the first 15 minutes and that has been pretty much the picture of late," said McGeeney.
His side showed grit, composure and stamina as they served up a high-octane second-half performance.
Despite Andrew Murnin's 16th-minute goal, Mark Lynch and James Kielt pooled their shooting skills to help thrust Derry into a 0-8 to 1-4 interval lead.
That was as good as it got for Dominic McErlain's charges, however. Armagh subsequently turned up the heat and with Murnin, Aidan Forker and skipper Rory Grugan to the fore they bossed the second period and set up a fascinating promotion shoot-out with Fermanagh next weekend.
Derry, though, are left with relegation fears.
"This game was maybe the most frustrating I have endured," McErlain said. "We had got ourselves into a good position but could not build on it. We have a real fight on our hands now."
Scorers - Armagh: R Grugan 0-6 (4f), A Murnin 1-2, B Crealey, S Sheridan N Grimley (f), C Watters, A Forker, N Rowland, O MacIomhair 0-1 each Derry: E Bradley 0-4 (2f), M Lynch 0-4 (2f), J Kielt 0-2, B Heron, C McAtamney, C McWilliams, McKaigue 0-1
Armagh: B Hughes 6; P Burns 6, O Lappin 7, P Hughes 6; E. English 5, G McCabe 7, J McElroy 5; S Sheridan 7, C Vernon 7; B Crealey 6, A Forker 8, N Grimley 6; R Grugan 7, A Murnin 8, E Rafferty 5. Subs: C Watters 6 for Rafferty (8), R Kennedy 5 for McElroy (13), N Rowland 6 for Hughes (half-time), O MacIomhair 6 for English (44), R Lappin 5 for Murnin (67), J Cosgrove 5 for Burns (73).
Derry: B McKinless 7; R Mooney 7, K Johnston 7, C McCluskey 6; M McEvoy 6, C McWilliams 7, C Doherty 6; C McAtamney 6, E Bradley 7; E Lynn 7, B Herron 7, T O'Brien 0-6; P McGrogan 0-6, M Lynch 0-7, J Kielt 0-7. Subs: K McKaigue 6 for McCluskey (27), N Toner 6 for O'Brien (half-time), B Rogers 5 for Mooney (40), P Cassidy 5 for Doherty (53), P McNeill 5 for Rogers (56), P Hagan 5 for Lynn (60)
Ref - Derek O'Mahony (Tipperary)
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