Louth 1-16 Armagh 3-18
Armagh got their National Hurling League off to a winning start, seeing off Louth, away from home, by eight-points.
It was a cliched game of two halves, and it was Armagh who build up a handsome half time lead thanks to the huge breeze blowing down the field.
Three goals saw the Orchard County ahead by 17-points at the interval, but Louth were the better team after the turnaround.
The sides traded scores in the opening couple of minutes, with Eoin McGuinness matching Andrew Mackin’s opener.
McGuinness then raised the first green flag of the day, with Shea Harvey and Danny Magee following up with points.
Louth hit back with a goal of their own though Sean Kerrisk. But Armagh kept in control with scores from Paudie Lappin and Harvey.
McGuinness grabbed another while four from captain Fionntan Donnelly and another from Harvey fired the visitors six ahead.
That lead only grew when Peadar McBride launched the ball in on top of McGuinness. The Newry Shamrocks clubman done well to find Magee, who flicked home his first goal.
Magee added a second, followed by scores from Donnelly, Barry Shortt, Sean Og McGuinness and Tomas Galvin. That gave Armagh a 3-15 to 1-4 half time advantage.
Galvin, introduced in the first half, notched a second while Donnelly rattled over his sixth point of the afternoon.
From there, it was all Louth, and the Wee County dwindled Armagh’s lead down to just seven-points.
The hosts, managed by former Armagh captain Paul McCormack, rattled off 12 points on the trot.
They couldn’t find the goal that would really spark their revival, thanks to some superb goalkeeping by Fintan Woods.
By Armagh had the final say and it was Galvin who split the posts with the last action of the game.
The second half may concern Karl McKeegan, but two points was the main objective, and it was mission accomplished in Darver.