Dillon helps Athlone end poor run
ATHLONE TOWN 2 UCD 0
They have had to wait until game number 14 of the season, but after losing 12 of those matches – as well as a manager – Athlone Town, courtesy of goals from Kealon Dillon and Sean Brennan, finally recorded their first win of the season.
Though outplayed in the first half, but still level due to UCD's wastefulness in front of goal, this game was turned completely on its head after the break.
Athlone's first goal was not just a breakthrough, but also a turning point. From that moment on they looked assured and confident. If anything, they could have won by more, but, in the end, were happy to settle for the two goals and three points.
Earlier, though, it seemed it would be another one of those nights which has plagued their season. UCD were the better team and would have gone ahead had Alan Byrne not bravely blocked Gary Burke's goalbound shot in the 25th minute before clearing Chris Mulhall's effort off the line.
Then, when Samir Belhout's effort hit the bar, Athlone must have thought it would be their night.
And so it proved. They went in front on 51 minutes, Dillon reacting quickest to the loose ball that rebounded off the crossbar from Mark Hughes' shot.
Once ahead, Athlone's confidence soared and they doubled their lead nine minutes later, Brennan tapping in from close range after Byrne's initial header from Dillon's cross was spilled by UCD 'keeper Conor O'Donnell.
Athlone Town – Skinner; Quigley (Harney 83), Prendergast, A Byrne, Clancy; S Brennan (Gorman 86), Dillon, Hughes S Byrne, Rusk; Marks (Sweeney 76)
UCD – O'Donnell; Matthews, Douglas, Kavanagh, Langtry ; Mulhall, Creevy, Burke (McCabe 74), Benson, O'Halloran (Wilson 70); Belhout
Ref – R Matthews (Mullingar)