Westmeath 0-9 Armagh 2-8
The Armagh under 20s qualified for the league Philly McGuinness league final with a five-point win over Westmeath.
Two first half goal from Callum O’Neill and Oisin Conaty helped the Orchard County secure their spot.
They had to do it the hard way. Centre half back Brendan O’Hagan was red carded close to half time, so Armagh played the second period with 14 men.
They also had to play the second period without star forward Caolan Finnegan, who picked up a shoulder injury.
Still, they had enough quality and composure to see the game out, having led by six-points at the interval.
The home side opened the scoring inside two minutes before Aaron O’Neill (free) got the Orchard County back on level terms.
Fergal O’Brien and Ruairi O’Brien put Armagh ahead before Callum O’Neill rattled the net, following a one-two with Finnegan, to put Armagh 1-3 to 0-1 ahead.
Westmeath closed the gap with a brace and a brilliant Antoin McParland was matched by the hosts.
Aaron O’Neill traded scores with Westmeath before Conaty cut out a short kickout and punished the keeper with a superb goal.
That handed Armagh a six-point advantage heading into the half time break, 2-5 to 0-5.
O’Neill slotted over a third free while Westmeath closed the gap with three points on the trot.
But Conaty halted their scoring spree, and O’Neill followed that up with his first point from open play.
Westmeath nailed the final score of the afternoon, but Armagh were comfortably ahead by that stage.
Armagh will now take on Longford in the u20 league final next weekend, with the time and venue TBC.