St Pat’s come away from Buncrana feeling they left two points behind

Meanwhile, Drogheda were held by Sligo while Bohs got back on the winning trail

St. Patrick’s Conor O’Malley makes a save against Derry City in their Airtricity League clash. Photo: Lorcan Doherty/Inpho

St. Patrick’s Conor O’Malley makes a save against Derry City in their Airtricity League clash. Photo: Lorcan Doherty/Inpho

 

Derry City 2 St Patrick’s Athletic 2

St. Pat’s will point to the five star performance of keeper, Conor O’Malley, having held draw specialists Derry City in Buncrana.

And it’s a match Liam Buckley will believe his youngsters should have won having moved into the driving seat on either side of half time in what proved a thrilling encounter in Donegal.

O’Malley was thrust into action during the early stages when blocking a powerful Aaron McEneff drive before turning a Ronan Curtis over his crossbar as Derry began to boss the ball.

However, poor defending proved to cost Derry dearly in the 21st minute, Kurtis Byrne played in by his namesake Conan before he squeeze the ball under the body of Ger Doherty.

Derry’s response was immediate but they found the Pat’s keeper in inspirational form. Mikail Kennedy’s effort was blocked by the keeper before O’Malley produced an outstanding save from close from close range to touch Harry Monagan’s shot over his crossbar.

O’Malley was in the thick of the action again in the 26th minute when the keeper produced another double save when denying Derry’s Ben Doherty when on the break.

However, in the the 38th minute there was nothing O’Malley could do to deny Derry a deserved equaliser. Schubert set Curtis up on the left and once he took control of the ball, cut inside Peers to curl a superb shot high into the top corrner of the net.

Pat’s struck again in the 68th minute, Conan Byrne playing the perfect chip over the head of a stranded Doherty to move back into the lead.

But with six minutes remaining the home side deservedly drew level for a second time when McEneff was set up by Conor McDermott before he drilled the ball through a forest of legs to find the net much to the delight of the home support.

DERRY CITY: G. Doherty; McDermott, Barry, Jarvis, B. Doherty; Schubert (Timlin 77), McEneff, Monaghan (Daniels, 84), Curtis; McNamee; Kennedy (Farren, 64).

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC: O’Malley; Barker, Peers, Feely, Bermingham; Byrne, Verdon (Kelly, h/t), Desmond, Dennehy; Markey; K. Byrne.

Referee: N. Doyle (Dublin).

Bohemians 2 Finn Harps 0

Oscar Brennan scored a cracking first goal for the club to get Bohemians back on track as Finn Harps had manager Ollie Horgan and midfielder Barry Molloy sent off at Dalymount Park.

It took Bohemians six minutes to end their four-match goal drought – even if they didn’t score themselves.

Georgie Poynton chased a through ball dow the middle, but backtracking Harps’ defender Damien McNulty stretched to toe it past keeper Ciaran Gallagher into his own net.

Harps worked their way back into the game with chances for Ciaran O’Connor, Sean Houston and Caolon McAleer before their manager Horgan was sent to the stand on 36 minutes for dissent.

Bohs started the second half as they did the first and were rewarded with their second goal four minutes in.

Kaleem Simon’s clever back drag found Brennan who took a touch before blasting a right-footer to the bottom corner of the net from over 25 yards.

Five minutes later Harps had midfielder Molloy sent off for a second booking.

BOHEMIANS: Supple; Pender, Byrne, Cornwall, Fitzgerald; Kavanagh (Hayes, 84), Morris, Poynton(Sule, 90), Brennan; Doyle, Simon (Nolan, 87)

FINN HARPS: Gallagher; Boyle, McNulty, Cantwell, Coll; Molloy; Harkin, McCourt (McGlynn, 79), Houston, McAleer; O’Connor (Dsane, 74).

Referee: Graham Kelly (Cork).

Drogheda United 1 Sligo Rovers 1

Gerard Lyttle’s first game in charge of Sligo Rovers ended in a highly entertaining 1-1 draw as his side showed real character to come from behind to secure a share of the spoils against a rejuvenated Drogheda United on Friday night.

The home side hit the front on 22 minutes when Gareth McCaffrey turned and shot from the edge of the box, low past the diving Micheal Schlingermann.

Rovers, for their part were creating chances on the counter-attack and they were handed a life line as Shane Elworthy brought down John Ayunga resulting in a penalty for the visitors. Kieran Sadiler stepped up only to see his spot kick saved by Stephen McGuinness. The winger atoned for his error though, a corner to the back post found an unmarked Ayunga who headed in.

Ayunga could have given his side the lead on the hour mark. The Kenyan almost connected with a Liam Martin cross. Drogheda had a series of chances as they laid siege to the Sligo goal. But they were unable to force a winner as the sides played out a highly entertaining draw.

DROGHEDA UNITED: McGuinness, Elworthy, Gallagher, McGuigan, Kane, Gavin Brennan, Thornton, Purdy Wixted (Doyle 85), Elliot (Griffin 73), McCaffrey (Killian Brennan 76).

SLIGO ROVERS: Schlingermann, Adebayo-Rowling, Leahy (Kearns 38), McFadden, Donelon, Sadiler, Roddan, Boylan, Martin, Ayunga (Stevens 82), Cretaro.

Referee: Ray Matthews (Westmeath).

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