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Allianz FL D2: Louth defeat Cork
Allianz Football League Division Two
Louth 1-10 Cork 0-10
By Dan Bannon at DEFY Pirc Mhuire
Louth have picked up a wonderful winning habit during Mickey Hartes short three year reign and another promotion tilt beckons next Sunday in Croke Park with Dublin after coming from five points behind to plunder Cork by two in a relentless finale.
If the Wee county are successful in reaching Division One, they will have climbed every rung of the league ladder in all of those Harte years successively.
In a repeat of the 1957 All-Ireland final, it was apt that Louths 66 year losing record to Cork would end on Ardee soil, the home pitch of Dermot OBrien, Louths captain on that famous day.
That streak looked set to continue however when the returning Steven Sherlock shot Cork five points to the good during a classy spell for the Leesiders.
Half backs Rory Maguire and Luke Fahy getting in on the act during John Clearys side's best period. Louth despite being under pressure dont concede many goals, and crucially stay in games.
James Peach Califf twice denied Chris g Jones for certain goals and then at the other end Ryan Burns won himself a penalty. Burns first effort was denied superbly by Mcheal Aodh Martin but his parried effort rebounded to the Hunterstown Rovers man for the relieved finish.
That handed Louth the lifeline they needed and Corks Daniel OMahony received his marching orders just before half time. All-Ireland U20 finalist Tommy Walsh just nudged Cork ahead 0-8 to 1-4 at the turn.
Sherlock and Fahy combined to give Louth a jolt but Fahys point would be Corks last and their final time leading the game. Despite losing Donal McKenny to a black card and Ruair Deane missing goal chances impact sub Craig Lennon and Daire McConnon combined to level.
With that winning knowhow instilled, Ciarn Downey gave Louth the lead for the first time with eight minutes remaining. In that position, in-form Louth don't relinquish those opportunities.
Home fan favourite Tommy Durnin raised the home crowd to their feet twice in a matter of minutes. The first, with his second point and then with a rousing substitution.
Downey then stepped up to complete the famous victory with his side's fifth point a row and promotion firmly in their sights.
Scorers for Louth: Ryan Burns 1-0, Ciarn Downey 1f, Tommy Durnin and Liam Jackson 0-2 each, Dire McConnon, Craig Lennon, Conor Grimes and Conor Early 0-1 each.
Scorers for Cork: Steven Sherlock 0-4 2fs, 145, Luke Fahy 0-2, Conor Corbett, Chris g Jones, Rory Maguire, and Tommy Walsh 0-1 eachLouth: James Califf; Dan Corcoran, Peter Lynch, Donal McKenny; Leonard Grey, Ciarn Murphy, Conall McKeever; Conor Early, Tommy Durnin; Niall Sharkey, Liam Jackson, Conor Grimes 0-01; Dire McConnon, Ciarn Downey, Ryan Burns.
Subs: Bevan Duffy for Grimes 35, Craig Lennon for Burns 45, Oisn McGuinness for Jackson 54, Conall McCaul for McKenny 57, Jay Hughes for McConnon 66, Paul Mathews for Durnin 74.
Cork: Michel Aodh Martin; Maurice Shanley, Daniel OMahony, Tommy Walsh; Luke Fahy, Rory Maguire, Sean Meehan; Colm OCallaghan, Ian Maguire; Eoghan McSweeney, Sean Powter, Ruairi Deane; Chris g Jones; Steven Sherlock, Conor Corbett.
Subs: Brian ODriscoll for McSweeney 54, Killian OHanlon for Jones 62, John ORourke for Corbett 62, Cian Kiely for Fahy 73, Mark Cronin for Sherlock 73.
Referee: Fergal Kelly Longford.