/ GAA

Antrim 0-23 Carlow 1-12

Updated: Saturday, 25 Jun 2011 21:19

Antrim victory - Chris McGuinness out-jumps Carlow's Daryl Roberts as the Saffrons took the spoils at Casement Park
Antrim victory - Chris McGuinness out-jumps Carlow's Daryl Roberts as the Saffrons took the spoils at Casement Park

Antrim enjoyed a successful senior football-hurling double at Casement Park as Dinny Cahill’s men progressed in the All-Ireland SHC qualifiers.

Neil McManus top-scored for the Saffrons with 0-09, helping his side pull away after Carlow were level at 0-09 apiece at half-time.

Ruairi Dunbar landed five scores for the visitors whose goal came in the 53rd minute from Craig Doyle, after good work from Eoin Nolan and Daryl Roberts.

But Antrim upped their work-rate and dominated the final quarter, running out deserved eight-point winners in the end.

Wing back Neal McAuley and midfielder Paul Shiels hit the opening points for Antrim, who will face Armagh in next weekend's Ulster final.

Dunbar floated over a free to get Carlow up and running and they were only 0-05 to 0-03 behind by the quarter-hour mark. The difference was just a single point when Doyle scored.

The wing forward had earlier been given a sight of goal, following a neat flick from full-forward Mark Brennan. The Antrim rearguard held firm, but Shane Kavanagh managed to convert the resulting '65'.

Kevin Ryan's men were certainly putting it up to Antrim who twice had to come from behind in a low tempo opening half.

McManus blasted an 80-metre strike through the uprights for arguably the point of the day, against a Carlow defence that gave the home forwards precious little room. Against that, the visitors' attack was guilty of too many wides.

Shiels sent over his third point, 14 seconds into the second half, and McManus added another to his growing collection for an 0-11 to 0-09 scoreline.

Cahill's charges pressed on and the gap was four when Dunbar, Carlow's chief marksman, was forced off with an injury. The Barrowsiders stayed in touch though, with Doyle's low shot rippling the net for 0-14 to 1-10.

But the concession of the goal seemed to get Antrim firing again and McManus, Karl Stewart, full-forward Darren Hamill, Thomas and Conor McCann and Eddie McCloskey helped themselves to points as the result was put beyond any doubt.

Paudie Kehoe sent over two consolation scores for Carlow to make it 0-22 to 1-12 but there was no way back for Ryan's side, who only lost 0-10 to 1-06 at this venue back in March.

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