By Niall Gartland
THE Armagh camogs have displayed their strength-in-depth this season and have been rewarded with a Division 3A final berth against Carlow this Saturday.
Ciara Donnelly, for so long their score-getting supremo, is sidelined at the moment with injury but the remaining forwards have stepped up to the plate and then some, racking up big scores en route to Saturday’s final.
They scored 5-12 against Mayo and 3-15 against Tyrone before clocking up a more mundane 1-14 in their Division 3A semi-final victory against Roscommon.
Their manager Sean Hughes, who came on board this season, is doing a good job and has been impressed with the efforts of his players, but doesn’t think it’ll be a one-sided affair against Carlow.
“We’ve done well but Carlow have done similarly well in their side of the table, they’ve been putting up big scores as well.
“We’ve looked into them and know bits and pieces but it can be hard enough to find information at the best of times. They’re obviously a good side, they’re putting up big scores and are putting up big scores in the Intermediate Championship, so it might be a bit of a step up for us. We’re looking forward to it anyway.”
On the injury sustained by Donnelly and the positive response by the rest of the team to her absence from the playing pitch, Hughes said: “Ciara’s injured at the moment but she’s very much part of the squad.
“There’s a few new or relatively new players in the squad and they’re stepping up and making a big impact on the scoreboard like Eimear Smyth from Ballymacnab.
“Shelly McGuigan’s from Ballymacnab as well, she played defence last year and she’s in the forwards now.
“Jennifer Curry from Middletown is another forward who is going well, and the midfield of Leanne Donnelly and Katie Commiskey have been doing well, and there’s Rachael Merry from Granemore. So there’s a spread of scorers throughout.”
One way or another, the Carlow game should be a good test for the team ahead of the championship given their results have been very much of the one-sided variety to date.
“That’s it, Carlow were top of their own section so it’s going to be a challenge.
“That’s what we’re looking, it’ll show us where we are. We’ll know more come 4.30pm on Saturday about how we’re going.
“There can be a bit of a tier within the division but even our semi-final against Roscommon was more physical and more of a test for us.”