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Pats humbled as Bray secure rare home win

ST PATRICK's Athletic endured a Friday the 13th nightmare at the Carlisle Grounds as they suffered a 3-2 defeat to bottom club Bray Wanderers and surrendered top spot in the Premier Division to Shamrock Rovers.

In their first game since Eddie Gormley's departure, Bray director of football Pat Devlin got the better of old foe Pete Mahon to dent the Saints' title hopes and see his side record their first home win in 10 months.

Astonishingly, the basement club had failed to win at home in 12 league matches this season. But they registered their first top-flight win since October last year -- at the 15th time of asking -- thanks to Jake Kelly's double.

Kelly got his first after Shane O'Neill was fouled just inside the Pat's half within 90 seconds of the restart. In a bit of quick thinking, the forward played the free to John Mulroy, who nutmegged Shane Guthrie to break clear.

Mulroy shaped to shoot but squared the ball for the in-rushing Kelly to score past Gary Rogers to make it 2-1.

And it got even better in the 54th minute as ex-Saints man Gary Dempsey floated over a free from the left wing, which was headed out only as far as Kelly, who smashed a stunning volley into the net.

Earlier, Bray had got off to the perfect start and took a surprise sixth-minute lead.

From a long ball by Dempsey, O'Neill tussled with Guthrie and the ball fell kindly for the 21-year-old, who burst past the ex-Galway man to slot between Rogers' leg.

But their joy was short-lived as the Dubliners levelled matters within 90 seconds. Damian Lynch whipped over a driven cross which was met by Dave McAllister's diving header. Matt Gregg parried, but Danny North reacted well to register his first goal for Pats with a close-range volley.

Having fallen 3-1 behind, Pats did pull one back in the 95th minute. A low shot rebounded kindly to North, who smashed home from 10 yards with a shot on the turn. But it was far too late to rescue Pats.