A young Leitrim team traveled to Aughrim today and emerged the right side of a 1-17 to 0-10 points full time score line at the end of an entertaining seventy minutes of football.
Leitrim manager Benny Guickan named 7 debutants prior to throw in and when they lost the services of Wayne McKeon in the days leading up to the game, he was replaced by Dean McGovern and that brought the number of debutants up to eight.
After the end of the opening 35minutes the score board read Wicklow 0-04 – 1-08 Leitrim. Ryan O’Rourke found the net after 40seconds and he was on fire throughout the opening half scoring 1-03 of his sides first half tally.
The score line was 1-01 to 0-03 after fifteen minutes before Brendan Gallagher and Mark Plunkett also chipped in with points to leave it 1-06 to 0-03 after 33minutes.
Sean Furling, Dean Healy, Johnny McGrath and Tommy Kelly did point for the home team in the first half but a dominate Leitrim team finished the half stronger to lead by seven at the interval.
Keith Beirne at full forward scored the final point of the half from play. Twenty one minutes into the new half and Leitrim led by 1-13 to 0-08, Keith Beirne with two more, Emlyn Mulligan and Ryan O’Rourke also adding scores. Damian Moran was sprung from the bench in the second half and he scored three points as Leitrim moved 1-15 to 0-09 clear with five minutes left.
Despite the home side going down to fourteen men they battled at till the very end of the game but in the end Leitrim were too strong with two late points from Mark Plunklett making sure of a comfortable opening day win and two valuable league points.
Shannonsides John Lynch caught up with the winning manager Benny Guickan after the game