Friday 23 March 2018

Andy Boyle header sinks Seagulls

Dundalk 1 Bray Wanderers 0

Andy Boyle's 21st-minute header helped maintain Dundalk’s four-point lead at the top. Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE
Andy Boyle's 21st-minute header helped maintain Dundalk’s four-point lead at the top. Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE Newsdesk Newsdesk

Andy Boyle popped up with his first goal in over a year as Dundalk recorded their sixth straight league win with a hard-fought victory over Bray Wanderers at Oriel Park.

The defender's 21st-minute header, from a Ronan Finn free-kick, was his first since the corresponding fixture 12 months ago, and maintained Dundalk's four-point lead at the top.

Not for the first time this season, Stephen Kenny's side were far from their best on home turf, and they had Gary Rogers to thank for securing the win - the Lilywhites goalkeeper standing tall to make a fine stop to deny Dylan Connolly late on.

The game should have been out of sight at that stage but David McMillan, who hit a brace against Galway United four nights earlier, squandered two gilt-edged chances.

Bray, who came in on the back of five defeats in their last six games, looked comfortable in the second half and they almost stunned Dundalk in the 89th minute when Connolly broke free but Rogers made a vital save to secure a hard fought win.

Dundalk - Rogers; Gannon, Gartland, Boyle, Massey; Shields, Benson (Meenan 67); Mountney (Barrett 80), Finn, Horgan; McMillan.

Bray Wanderers - Cherrie; Douglas, Kenna, McNally, Harding (McDonagh 74); Salmon, Creevy; Connolly, Moore, Marks (Brennan 69); Pender (Kelly 69).

Ref - Derek Tomney.

Youths add to Longford woe

Longford Town 2 Wexford Youths 4

Sublime second-half goals from Andy Mulligan and Paul Murphy lifted Wexford Youths out of the relegation places to leave Longford rooted to the foot of the table.

Town striker David O'Sullivan outmuscled Ryan Delaney to stretch and get a toe to the ball to force it past Youths keeper Graham Doyle to give the home side a sixth-minute lead. But Delaney redeemed himself when bundling the loose ball home from a corner six minutes later.

Another corner brought Youths the lead on 20 minutes, Chris Kenny forcing Bonner's delivery home at the back post. Youths then scored the goal of the game on 54 minutes.

Murphy and Eric Molloy combined to find Jonny Bonner on the left. The midfielder then threaded a delightful ball through for the run of winger Mulligan who drew keeper Molloy before confidently shooting past him.

Gary Delaney turned O'Sullivan's cross into his own net on 72 minutes to give Longford hope. But Youths had the final word when Murphy fired in their fourth goal on 85 minutes.

Longford Town - Molloy; Hughes, Flynn, Noack-Hofmann, Powell; Cowan (Simon, 57), Gannon, Dillon (McKeown, 68), O'Connor; O'Sullivan, O'Hanlon.

Wexford Youths - Doyle; McCabe, G Delaney, R Delaney, Friel; Molloy (O'Keeffe, 90+1), Bonner, Kenny, Mulligan (Whittle, 89); Furlong (Dunne, 68), Murphy.

Ref - J McKell (Tipperary)

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport