A strong second-half performance by Louth gave them a comprehensive 0-19 to 0-9 victory in a one-sided encounter in Carrick–on-Shannon.
point from play by Leitrim’s Keith Beirne opened the scoring but the Wee County hit the next six points without reply, with Sam Mulroy playing a captain’s part with two frees and a ‘45’, to lead 0-6 to 0-1 after 24 minutes.
However, the hosts found their scoring touch with six unanswered points between the 28th and 35th minute by Beirne (three), Mark Plunkett (two) and Conor Dolan to end the half in front by the minimum, 0-7 to 0-6.
Leitrim extended their lead on the restart with another Beirne point but they failed to score again until added time.
The visitors dominated for the remainder of the contest as Leitrim offered only token resistance and the result was never in doubt as Mickey Harte’s men scored at will with the influential Mulroy, Ciarán Keenan, Ciarán Downey, Liam Jackson and substitute Declan Byrne contributing to an impressive Louth victory.
Meanwhile at Corrigan Park, a point from Paddy Cunningham secured a 3-313 to 3-12 win for Antrim in an eventful clash.
Antrim made the brighter start with Odhran Eastwood finding the net on seven minutes.
They got their second goal on 13 minutes as Marc Jordan thumped home to make it 2-1 to 0-2, but Sligo had the first of three penalties on 27 minutes when goalkeeper Michael Byrne was penalised for a push. Niall Murphy stepped up to find the top corner to level.
It remained tied at half-time despite Antrim losing Ryan Murray to a black card. Sligo took a grip when they were awarded a second penalty for a foul on Patrick O’Connor.
Murphy drilled home and it seemed Sligo were on their way. However, Antrim chipped away and when Murphy was shown a second yellow, Antrim made this count as Ryan Murray thumped over the leveller.
Eunan Walsh then goaled for the Saffrons before Sligo got a third penalty, Nathan Rooney converting this time before Antrim worked the opening for Cunningham’s clincher.