Limerick seal Premier Division return with plenty to spare
UCD 2-3 Limerick
A second-half brace from Paul O'Conor saw Limerick crowned First Division champions without having lost a game, sealing their immediate return to the Premier Division with six games to spare.
"I'm really pleased we're back and that Limerick is a Premier Division club again," said manager Martin Russell. "We've gone up well ahead of time, playing attacking football."
UCD started the better at the Bowl, fully deserving their 24th-minute lead.
Ryan Swan got free on the left to loop a deep cross to the far post where Marty Waters arrived to plant his header back across Limerick 'keeper Freddy Hall to the far corner of the net.
The lead lasted just three minutes, though, as a fortuitous ricochet off UCD defender Josh Collins put John O'Flynn in on goal to calmly side-foot to the net for his 12th strike of the campaign.
Though UCD started the second half as they did the first, it was Limerick who took the lead with their first attack after the interval on 54 minutes.
Chris Kenny got to the endline to cross into the area where O'Conor was on hand to tap home from just yards out.
In an open game, that lead lasted just two minutes as Jason McClelland's deep corner was met at the back post with a towering header from Maxi Kouogun.
But on what was their day, Limerick had the final say 14 minutes from time to seal the deal with a victory.
Shaun Kelly galloped to the endline to cross for former student O'Conor to score with a second tap-in from close range to begin the celebrations from Limerick's raucous travelling support.
UCD - Corbett; Langtry, Kouogun, Collins, Scales; Sloggett, O'Neill; Waters (Byrne, 89), Watson (Kelly, 81), McClelland (O'Connor, 73); Swan.
Limerick - Hall; Kelly (Coughlan, 84), O'Connor, Williams, Tracy; O'Conor, Duggan; Kenny, Lynch, Russell (Greene, 61); O'Flynn (Mulhall, h-t).
Ref -A Mullally (Waterford).