Substitute Kieran Prior struck a dramatic stoppage-time winner to give Sligo their second Nicky Rackard Cup title in a thrilling encounter against Armagh at Croke Park.
Despite losing Tiarnan Nevin to a red card on the hour mark, the Orchard County looked set to come out on top when Danny Magee grabbed his second goal of the game. A monster Simon Doherty free stretched them further in front, only for Sligo to respond through Connor Griffin and a Gerard O’Kelly Lynch major.
This left the tie poised for extra-time until Prior produced the decisive score of the contest on 74 minutes. In a whirlwind start to the action, O’Kelly Lynch grabbed a second-minute goal for Sligo - who were Lory Meagher Cup champions in 2018.
While they subsequently fell behind, the dead-ball accuracy of full-forward Keith Raymond moved the Yeats men back in front on the stroke of 30 minutes.
However, Armagh responded with Magee’s first goal of the game and they eventually brought a 1-10 to 1-8 cushion into the interval.
Though the Ulster men were on course to secure a third Nicky Rackard crown, back-to-back Raymond points cancelled out their lead.
Although Sligo appeared to hold all the aces when they gained a numerical advantage inside the closing-quarter, Magee’s clinical finish was the launchpad for Armagh to establish a four-point buffer.
Their Connacht rivals simply refused to throw in the towel, though. After O'Kelly Lynch breathed fresh life into their challenge, Prior split the posts in effortless style to determine the final outcome of the contest
Scorers for Sligo: K Raymond 0-8 (7f, 1 ’65’), G O’Kelly Lynch 2-1, R Cox, J Starr, C Griffin, S Crowley, K Prior 0-1 each.
Scorers for Armagh: D Magee 2-0, D Gaffney 0-6 (6f), E McGuinness, N Curry 0-2 each, S Doherty (f), P Quinn, D McKenna 0-1 each.
ARMAGH: S Doherty; C Rice, O McCann, P Quinn; T Nevin, D Bridges, C Clifford; S Toal, S Renaghan; D Gaffney, O Curry, P McGrane; D McKenna, D Magee, E McGuinness.
Subs: N Curry for McCann (20), J O’Connor for Toal (56).
SLIGO: M Burke; J Weir, N Feehily, K O’Kennedy; R McHugh, L Reidy, K Banks; R Cox, J Starr; G Cadden, C Griffin, K Raymond; T O’Kelly Lynch, G O’Kelly Lynch, K Gilmartin.
Subs: S Crowley for T O’Kelly Lynch (h-t), M Gordon for O’Kennedy (47), K Prior for Cadden (58).
Referee: J Connors (Donegal).