Armagh 1-13 Westmeath 1-12
Armagh got their All-Ireland campaign off to a winning start against Westmeath, but it was far from convincing.
A late goal from Conor Turbitt turned the tide for the home side, who shaded the contest by a single point.
Ciaran Mackin assisted and scored Armagh’s final two-points. But it was Turbitt’s 68th minute goal put the Orchard County ahead for the first time since the fourth minute.
For the majority of the game, it was the visitors that carried the lead, thanks to Ronan O’Toole’s first half goal.
John Heslin sent a long pass towards Stephen Smith, who’s delicate flick played through O’Toole. The Mullingar man fired the ball to the net.
A huge Luke Loughlin score followed to give the visitors a four-point cushion midway through the half.
Rian O’Neill and Rory Grugan exchanged efforts with Heslin and O’Toole while three on the trot from Kieran McGeeney’s men narrowed the gap.
Westmeath had the final say of the first half however, with Heslin and Sam Duncan splitting the posts to send them 0-7 to 1-7 ahead at the interval.
Westmeath played keep ball at the start of the second period, so much so, that it took 14 minutes for the first score.
It came through the impressive Andrew Murnin before O’Neill followed it up with his first from play.
Heslin and Murnin cancelled each other as Loughlin and David Lynch restored Westmeath’s three-point lead.
O’Neill popped over a free before his long-range shot dropped short, but Murnin tapped the ball in the direction of Conor Turbitt who volleyed the ball home.
It was score for score in the final few minutes as Armagh held on for a one-point victory. A win is a win, but Armagh have a lot to improve on before their trip to Omagh next week.