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Armagh future is looking bright after win over Cavan

By John Campbell

Published 30/05/2016

Rising star: Rian O’Neill shows his class against Cavan yesterday
Rising star: Rian O’Neill shows his class against Cavan yesterday

Armagh, Donegal and Monaghan have joined Tyrone in the last four of the race to the Ulster Minor football championship title following quarter-final victories yesterday.

The Orchard County surprised a fancied Cavan side by winning 2-14 to 1-12 at Kingspan Breffni Park while Antrim gave highly-rated Donegal a rare fright at Corrigan Park where the visitors were pushed to the pin of their collar before coming out on top by 2-11 to 2-6.

And Down showed considerable staying power and resilience to bounce back from a half-time deficit to run Monaghan close at Clones where the hosts just managed to come out on top by 1-13 to 0-11.

Armagh certainly showed character in claiming the scalp of a Cavan side that had reached last year's decider and had been expected to make further progress this summer.

Yet Armagh made things hard for themselves because of their tendency to show lapses in concentration.

Paul McGrane's boys led by 1-7 to 0-6 at half-time, their goal coming from the superb Rian O'Neill in the fourth minute when he weaved through the Cavan defence to tuck the ball past goalkeeper Keith Fitzsimons.

O'Neill went on to snap up 1-5 overall but it was a contribution that was embellished by three sparkling second-half points from the impressive Ross McQuillan and four overall from the cultured boot of Jason Duffy.

In the forthcoming semi-finals Derry, the reigning champions, will take on Armagh while Monaghan will meet Donegal in what should be two attractive clashes.

Belfast Telegraph

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