Kearns stars as Saints frustrated on College trip
UCD 1 St Patrick's Athletic 1
UCD are learning about life in the top flight, after a five-year absence, as they recovered from some early jitters to carve out a point against St Patrick's Athletic.
Saints 'keeper Brendan Clarke came into the game with a run of three clean sheets but it was his opposite number, Conor Kearns, who came away with the plaudits, his efforts helping UCD end their winless run.
Away fans made up the bulk of an attendance of 940 on a rainy Dublin night but it was an evening of frustration for Pat's, who were unable to make their first-half lead, and domination of possession, yield more than a draw.
Pat's were in control of things, bossing the game from midfield and by the 28th minute they had their goal, Mikey Drennan with his third in four games.
It was a well-worked move, Rhys McCabe collecting the ball from a throw-in, working a one-two with Chris Forrester and when McCabe sent in his cross, Drennan was there to meet it with a sublime finish.
UCD looked a lot brighter in the second half, drawing level on 58 minutes when a great move by defender Liam Scales set up Conor Davis, who netted from close range for his first top-flight goal.
Urged on by their travelling support, Pat's sought the goal, and win, which would have put them joint top, but 'keeper Kearns saved well at the feet of Rhys McCabe, and snuffed out a threat from Drennan following a slip-up by Josh Collins, the point a deserved one.
UCD - Kearns; Tobin, Scales, Collins, Dignam; Doyle (O'Farrell 46); McClelland, O'Neill, Molloy; Farrugia; Davis (Mahdy 81).
St PAT'S - B Clarke; Madden, Toner, Desmond, Bermingham; Lennon; Forrester, McCabe (Shaw 81), Clifford, Miele (Doona 68); Drennan.
Ref - R Harvey
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