| 5.3°C Dublin

kelly's strike keeps north end on track

NORTH END UTD........................ 1

BRIDGE ROVERS....................... 0

CIARAN KELLY'S 87th minute strike kept North End Utd's promotion charge on course as they eventually saw off a skilful Bridge Rovers outfit in this Wexford Football League Division 1 clash at Belvedere on Sunday morning.

Still twelve points adrift of leaders Adamstown but with six games in hand, the late strike could yet prove crucial as the Wexford town side continue their chase of long time leaders in their bid to return to the top flight. Yet it was Bridge Rovers who should have been ahead at half-time for they controlled the opening forty-five minutes creating some good chances in the process. It took two excellent stops from keeper Lee Walker to keep his side in the game, while the over the water side also sent two gilt edged opportunities the wrong side of the post during their period of dominance.

With North End depending on the penetrating runs of Kyle Dempsey, all of which proved fruitless, it was Bridge Rover who should have broken the deadlock on thirty-three minutes, but again Goucher failed to keep his shot on target from just ten metres, while Derek Walsh with an excellent shot forced another topclass stop out of keeper Walker leaving it 0-0 at the break.

With the points so crucial it was North End who powered into the game on the resumption. They were in action from early on as they pummelled the visitors goal. While Trevor Berry and Philip Tubritt both failed to apply finishing touches in front of goal freustration began to creep into their play.

North End were applying intense pressure. The Bridge Rovers back four got in a tangle as they attempted to clear a long ball into the area and it was Ciaran Kelly who swung his right boot in the direction of the breaking ball to power it high into the roof of the net leaving the visitors totally frustrated and shocked.

Bridge Rovers had not sufficient time to fashion an equaliser which they would have deserved but in the end it was North End who took the three points in their continued chase for promotion back to the top flight.

North Ens Utd: Lee Walker, Colm Bent, Keith Furlong, John Foley, Ciaran Kelly, Craig Mcguire, Kyle Dempsey, Donal O'Leary, Trevor Berry, Philip Tubritt, Elliott Malone. Subs: Alan Colgate, Alan Murphy, Andy Moore.

Bridge Rovers: David Shiggins, Mark Tobin, John Kennedy, Brendan Larkin, David Kenny, Keith Devereux, Terry Gainfort, Derek Walsh, Larry Gainfort, Martin Walsh, Bill Goucher. Subs: Shane Murphy, Mark McEldowney, M.J. Reck.

Referee: Kieran Dunne.