All-Ireland qualifier Round 2A: Antrim lose to Limerick

Mark Sweeney and Gearoid Hegarty
Mark Sweeney and Gearoid Hegarty contend for the ball

Antrim lost by five points to Limerick, 3-11 to 0-15, in the All-Ireland Football Qualifier Round 2A game at the Gaelic Grounds on Saturday.

Antrim recovered from an early deficit to lead 0-8 to 0-6 at half-time despite having centre half back Justin Crozier carried off with an elbow injury.

Ger Collins scored two penalties after the break, while Darragh Treacy made the win safe with a late goal.

The counties were meeting in the Senior Championship for the first time.

An unchanged Limerick side scored the opening points of the game through Killian Phair and Ian Ryan, but Liam Bradley's team were soon on level terms thanks to a score by Paul McCann and a Paddy Cunningham free.

The hosts re-established a two-point lead as Ryan (2) and Thomas Lee pointed, with Cunningham knocking over further frees.

Niall McKeever and McCann added points to bring the sides level again, but a lengthy delay ensued while Crozier was treated for an elbow injury and then taken to hospital.

The injury was later diagnosed as at best a bad dislocation and at worst a potential break.

The Saffrons moved three points clear but Mark O'Riordan landed a point to reduce the deficit to three again.

After the interval, Collins fired low into the net from the penalty spot after John Galvin had been fouled, but Cunningham continued to keep the visitors in the game with impressive scores and frees.

Patrick Flood produced a fine save from O'Riordan but moments later Limerick were awarded a second penalty, Collins again finding the net to make it 2-10 to 0-11.

Points from Cunningham and Patrick McBride gave Antrim some hope but Galvin restored a three-point lead.

Treacy flicked the ball into the net with his hand to secure victory for Limerick.

Antrim become the third Ulster county to exit the Championship, following the departure of Derry and Fermanagh in Round 1A two weeks ago.

Saturday's GAA results

All-Ireland Football Qualifiers Round 2A

Limerick 3-11 Antrim 0-15

Tipperary 2-17 Longford 0-06

Wicklow 0-10 Sligo 0-12

All-Ireland Hurling Qualifiers Round 1

Clare 2-25 Wexford 2-25 (after extra-time)

Tipperary 3-25 Galway 4-13