Brian Mallon's 18th-minute goal helped Armagh through to the Ulster SFC semi-finals as Monaghan were beaten 1-13 to 0-10 in this evening’s replay in Clones.
Battling back from an early 0-03 to no score deficit, the Orchard men set up a last-four clash with either Fermanagh or Antrim as Oisin McConville (0-05 (4f)) led the scoring.
Centre forward Mallon ran onto a Kieran McGeeney pass to blast past Farney keeper Shane Duffy and end Monaghan's early dominance.
Armagh moved 1-05 to 0-06 clear at the break and although Tommy Freeman and Rory Woods twice helped Monaghan get back within a point, there was no denying the reigning Ulster champions.
History was well and truly on Armagh’s side going into the second game. Joe Kernan’s men had not lost a replay in the Ulster championship since 2003. They won two on the way to collecting last year's Anglo Celt Cup.
But Monaghan made the better start with Woods side footing over, Paul Finlay beating away the attentions of Enda McNulty to score and Freeman nipping in ahead of Andy Mallon to collect and point, all within the opening 10 minutes.
It was another four minutes until Armagh supporters were cheering their opener from the ever-reliable McConville (free). But once Kernan’s side got motoring, the scores came.
Brian Mallon tagged on a second point, eft footing over under pressure from Gary McQuaid, before the arrival of only his second championship goal.
McGeeney, who again partnered captain Paul McGrane at midfield, sent in a teasing ball for Mallon to gobble up, turn inside the challenge of Monaghan skipper Damian Freeman and hit a rasping drive to the roof of the net.
Steven McDonnell put added emphasis to the goal when he pointed seconds later for a 1-03 to 0-03 lead.
Crucially, just before the break, Tommy Freeman, who had earlier slotted a goal chance wide, missed another attempt when put through on goal.
Woods and McDonnell traded points before the former put Freeman haring in on Ciaran McKinney but the young Armagh stopper did well to block out the shot with Freeman accidentally colliding with an umpire in the follow-up.
Thankfully both Freeman and the umpire were fit enough to continue.
Two Finlay points sandwiched McConville’s second placed ball in injury-time as Armagh went in at the interval with a two-point buffer.
Full-forward Ronan Clarke extended it to three just moments into the second half and Armagh looked set to make Seamus McEneaney’s men pay for some poor finishing in the opening half.
But Monaghan dug deep and a Finlay free and Freeman’s second point cut the gap to one at 1-06 to 0-08. A McConville free steadied Armagh but under pressure from Ciaran McKeever, the burly Woods did excellently to fire over a quick reply.
Nonetheless, Monaghan’s play was pattern-less and when Armagh managed to find another gear for the closing 20 minutes, they moved out of sight.
After Woods’ score, midfielder Dick Clerkin landed Monaghan’s only other point of the game, on 54 minutes, and even then it was a debatable one as the umpires took an age to award it. Armagh hit six of the game’s final seven points to set out a morale-boosting win.
McConville (0-02 (1f)), McDonnell, Clarke, wing back Paul Duffy, who darted through to notch his first ever championship point, and wing forward Paddy McKeever, with an excellent shot off the outside of his left boot from distance, all raised white flags to maintain their side’s push for a fourth Ulster title in five seasons.
MONAGHAN: S Duffy; D McArdle, J Coyle, C Flanagan; D Freeman (capt), G McQuaid, V Corey; E Lennon, D Clerkin (0-01); P Finlay (0-04 (2f)), S Gollogly, H McElroy; T Freeman (0-02), R Ronaghan, R Woods (0-03).
Subs used: P McGuigan for Ronaghan (35+3 mins), K Tavey for Gollogly (54), C Hanratty for McElroy (63)
ARMAGH: C McKinney; A Mallon, T McEntee, E McNulty; A Kernan, C McKeever, P Duffy (0-01); K McGeeney, P McGrane (capt); P McKeever (0-01), B Mallon (1-01), M Mackin; S McDonnell (0-03), R Clarke (0-02), O McConville (0-05 (4f)).
Sub used: P Toal for Clarke (69 mins)
Referee: Derek Fahy (Longford)