By Daragh Small
Leitrim 0-25 Louth 1-12
Emlyn Mulligan scored six points as Leitrim dumped Louth out of the championship at Páirc Seán Mac Diarmada in Carrick-on-Shannon this evening.
Louth were 1-7 to 0-9 ahead at half-time, but they had James Craven sent-off on a straight red card in the first half.
William Woods got Louth’s goal and scored all of their second-half points, but Leitrim were unstoppable, as the visitors finished with just 12 men on the field.
Louth claimed a comfortable 2-26 to 1-19 victory at London in Round 1, and they had all the momentum early on here.
Their goal arrived in the third minute when Conor Grimes took advantage of Diarmuid McKiernan’s error from the Leitrim kick-out. Grimes found Woods and he finished to the top corner of the net.
Ciarán Downey quickly tagged on another point and Ryan O’Rourke finally put Leitrim on the scoreboard in the fourth minute.
But they looked over-awed in the early stages and they received a massive blow when full-back Alan Armstrong got a black card for a trip on Tommy Durnin in the eighth minute.
Louth should have put the game beyond doubt, and points from Woods (free) and Declan Byrne gave them a comfortable 1-4 to 0-2 lead. But they began to kick wides and after 20 minutes Louth had registered six of those.
Leitrim took heart from that and it needed the heroics of Derek Maguire to deny Darragh Rooney in the 19th minute before Grimes almost tapped a Downey long delivery to the net up the other end.
Brendan Gallagher scored to reduce the arrears to 1-5 to 0-4 with 11 minutes remaining in the opening half.
Then Ronan Holcroft was black carded after Woods had hit the post with another goal chance.
Leitrim had lived on the edge but when Craven got red for an alleged head-butt on Damien Moran, the home side rallied.
Two massive points from Emlyn Mulligan before half-time meant Leitrim trailed by 1-7 to 0-9 at the interval.
Leitrim were awesome at the start of the second half and they kept Louth scoreless until the 50th minute. In the meantime Leitrim six points, with Mulligan influential throughout.
Woods finally scored a free but it was a brief reprieve with two points from Moran, and a Heslin effort giving Leitrim a 0-18 to 1-8 lead.
Mulligan got a black card with 11 minutes remaining but Leitrim pushed on, with Bevan Duffy and Emmet Carolan got black late on for Louth. James Rooney also got black deep in injury-time.
Scorers for Leitrim: E Mulligan 0-6 (0-3f), D Moran 0-6, J Heslin 0-3, D Rooney 0-3, R O’Rourke 0-3 (0-1f), D Wrynn 0-1, B Gallagher 0-1, D McGovern 0-1, D Flynn 0-1
Scorers for Louth: W Woods 1-7 (0-5f, 0-1 45), D Byrne 0-3, T Durnin 0-1, C Downey 0-1.
Leitrim: D McKiernan; P Maguire, A Armstrong, M McWeeney; J Rooney, S Quinn, N Plunkett; D Moran, D Wyrnn; D Rooney, J Heslin, A Flynn; R O’Rourke, E Mulligan, B Gallagher.
Subs: J Mitchell for Armstrong (9 BC), D McGovern for A Flynn (45), C McGloin for Gallagher (46), E Ward for Rooney (57), D Flynn for Mulligan (61 BC), N McWeeney for Wrynn (67).
Louth: N Gallagher; D Marks, E Carolan, J Craven; D Maguire, B Duffy, A Williams; A McDonnell, T Durnin; C Downey, D Byrne, G McSorley; W Woods, C Grimes, R Holcroft.
Subs: R Burns for Holcroft (27 BC), N Conlon for McSorley (44), H Osborne for Marks (53), J McEneaney for Byrne (63), E Lafferty for Williams (70).
Referee: Noel Mooney (Cavan).