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Paddy McKeever and Ethan Rafferty celebrate at the Athletic Grounds.

Paddy McKeever and Ethan Rafferty celebrate at the Athletic Grounds.

Allianz FL D3: Armagh and Westmeath impress

Allianz Football League Division Three



A goal from Ethan Rafferty two minutes from time set up a late winner for Rory Grugan as Armagh claimed a come-from-behind victory over Longford at the Athletic Grounds.

With six minutes remaining Longford held a 1-10 to 0-9 lead after James McGivney had pointed for the midlanders, but Denis Connerton’s side couldn’t add to that tally as Kieran McGeeney’s troops claimed a third win on the spin and pulled clear at the top of the table.

Coming into this game both teams had perfect records, but it was Longford that got off to the brighter start and were fully deserving of their 0-8 to 0-5 lead they accumulated at the interval with Robbie Smyth and Dessie Reynolds to the fore.

Longford continued to impress after the resumption and worked their way into a 0-9 to 0-5 lead, although Armagh fought back well to level the scores with 15 minutes remaining.

A Longford win seemed to be likely when Donal McElligott converted a penalty in the 57th minute, but they were denied a third victory of the division after the late comeback.

Tiernan Rossiter hit a late goal for Wexford, but Westmeath were never troubled as they claimed a second win of the season and inflicted a third straight defeat on Wexford.

Four points from John Heslin saw Westmeath pull clear midway though the second-half, and despite James Stafford and Ronan O’Toole points and the late goal, Wexford were too far behind.

There wasn’t much between the sides at the interval as Westmeath held a 0-6 to 0-4 lead, but after an exchange of scores Stafford put just a point between the sides.

But that was as good as it got for the home side at Wexford Park. Three unanswered points from Luke Loughlin pushed Westmeath four points clear, while Heslin and substitute Finbarr Coyne also found their range to stretch that lead, which proved sufficient for a 0-16 to 1-10 win.

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