Posted: 2 weeks ago

Armagh advanced to the semi-finals of the TG4 All-Ireland SFC after impressive victory

Armagh 2-11

Mayo 0-11

By Kevin Fallon

Photos by Sportsfile

Blaithin Mackin led the way as Armagh advanced to the semi-finals of the TG4 All-Ireland SFC with a decisive victory at BOX-IT Athletic Grounds.

They will meet the runners-up for the last two years Kerry in what will be a repeat of the Lidl National League final which was won by Armagh in April by 2-12 to 2-9

Armagh led by 1-6 to 0-3 at the break, having raced into a 1-3 to 0-1 lead after just 12 minutes of the contest.

Early points from Aoife McCoy and Eve Lavery settled Armagh and after Lucy Wallace had got Mayo off the mark, Armagh struck for a goal when Blaithin Mackin found the net after being set up by Niamh Henderson.

Mackin then added a free before Aoife Geraghty and Henderson exchanged points to leave Armagh ahead by 1-4 to 0-2 at the end of the opening quarter.

The hard-working Geraghty pulled back another good point for Mayo after 22 minutes but Armagh finished the half strongly with Lavery kicking two points to lead by six at the interval.

Armagh centre-back Lauren McConville and Annie Gough exchanged points in the opening four minutes of the second half.

Mayo created several good openings but the final pass was often intercepted and they paid the price when Armagh countered from deep for Henderson to set up McCoy for their second goal to lead by 2-7 to 0-4 after 38 minutes.

Henderson got her second point of the evening to extend the lead before Mayo responded with points from Lisa Cafferky and Maria Cannon to leave it 2-8 to 0-6 going into the final quarter.

Mayo, having brought in the experienced Fiona McHale, rallied but while Lisa Cafferky took her haul to three points from play and Cannon got her third free, they never looked like getting the goal they needed to mount a serious comeback and reach the semi-finals for the fourth year in a row.

Now Armagh will try to take a superb season one step further and reach the final for the first time since their only appearance when they went down to Cork in the final in 2006.

Scorers for Armagh: B Mackin 1-3 (0-2f), A McCoy 1-1, E Lavery 0-3 (2f), N Henderson 0-2, L McConville 0-1, N Reel 0-1.

Mayo: L Cafferky 0-3, M Cannon 0-3f, A Geraghty 0-2, L Wallace 0-1, A Gough 0-1, A Staunton 0-1.

ARMAGH: A Carr; G Ferguson, C McCambridge (c), R Mulligan; C Towe, L McConville, D Coleman; N Coleman, C O’Hanlon; E Druse, A McCoy, E Lavery; M McCambridge, N Henderson, B Mackin. Subs: S Quigley for M McCambridge (47), N Reel for Lavery (49), L Kenny for Druse (56).

MAYO: L Brennan; S Lally (c), N O’Malley, K Sullivan; É Ronayne, C Durkan, D Caldwell; A Geraghty, E Murray; L Wallace, A Gough, S Cafferky; S Walsh, M Cannon, L Cafferky. Subs: A Staunton for Murray (half-time), F McLaughlin for Sullivan (39), F McHale for Gough (45), C Needham for Durkan (49), M Reilly for S Cafferky (54).

Referee: Brendan Rice (Down).