GAA Football

Armagh win a thriller at Pairc Esler

Sean O'Neill

Ulster Senior Football Championship quarter-final

Down 3-13 Armagh 2-17

AFTER a thrilling game at Pairc Esler, Armagh squeezed past Down to score a first Ulster SFC win at the Newry venue for 63 years and hand boss Kieran McGeeney the first provincial championship win of his tenure.

Andrew Murnin’s goal in the second period of extra time proved to be the winning score.

That the game went to extra time looked most unlikely when Armagh led by five points with just five minutes remaining. But a Donal O’Hare goal for Down, who had lost Caolan Mooney to a straight red card on the stroke of half time, and points from Paul Devlin and James Guinness forced the additional time.

And Down continued in the ascendency by going three points up in the first half of extra time. But Murnin, sent on at half time in extra time, proved an inspired sub as he grabbed 1-1, including that vital goal.

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