Ulster University qualified for the Sigerson Cup final on Thursday evening with a five-point win over Maynooth University.
It certainly wasn’t as comfortable as the scoreline may suggest, but a first half goal helped UU make it through.
Derry attacker Niall Loughlin, who hit 0-1 in last year’s Ulster final, struck the all-important three-pointer.
Emmet Magee of Clann Eireann came off the bench to help UU see the game out in the final few minutes.
Maynooth were minus star attacker Darragh Kirwin of Kildare, but still UU deserved their victory in the end.
The Kildare based college raced ahead early on, leading by three-points at a stage in the first half, 0-6 to 0-3.
But two Ruairi Canavan frees along with Loughlin’s major gave Barry Dillon’s side the initiative at half time.
Maynooth came at UU hard in the second half, but the Ulster men held on and finished strongly.
They tagged on the final few points in the game, helped by Tyrone star Darragh Canavan, to win by five.
Magee was the only Orchard player to get on the field but there is a fine Armagh representation on the squad.
Jack Reel (Silverbridge), Ronan Mallon (Grange), Jack Cunningham (Carrickcruppen) and Antoin McParland (St Paul’s) are all on the panel.
UU will now take on competition favourites UCD, who saw off UL by the minimum of margins in their semi-final.
Queen’s University Belfast made a winning start to the O’Connor Cup and saw off MIC Limerick with ease.
Strongly backboned by Armagh players, the QUB ladies ran out impressive 2-17 to 1-4 winners in the end.
Queen’s are managed by former Armagh defender and captain Caoimhe Morgan and captained by current player Emily Druse.
Grace Ferguson (Ballyhegan), Brianna Matthews (Shane O’Neill’s), Ciara Garvey (Carrickcruppen) and Sarah Quigley are also on the team.