Ward hat-trick seals vital Bohs win
Drogheda Utd 1 Bohemians 4
Keith Ward helped himself to a superb hat-trick as Bohemians took a huge step towards securing their Premier Division status and sent Drogheda tumbling further towards relegation.
In a game that saw both teams finish with 10 men, Ward struck the first blow after only 11 minutes and the Boynesiders were well beaten long before the final whistle.
Bohs began this game on the front foot, with Ismahil Akinade causing plenty of headaches for the home side, and the big man had a header turned around the post by Drogs goalkeeper Stephen McGuinness on nine minutes.
However, it was Ward who fired the visitors in front in the 11th minute, beating McGuinness with an exquisite 25-yard strike after an excellent through-ball from Fuad Sule.
Coming up to half-time, though, Ward then broke unchallenged from halfway and drove a low shot past McGuinness at his near post for 2-0.
Drogheda registered their first goal attempt of the game on 48 minutes when Chris Mulhall's glancing header flew wide and shortly after Bohs were reduced to 10 men when referee Hennessy showed a second yellow card to Oscar Brennan for a pull-back on Jamie Hollywood.
Ward then made it 3-0 with an outlandish strike from out on the right that went in off the post, and 60 seconds later Dinny Corcoran fired past a stunned McGuinness from 35 yards.
Substitute Sean Brennan pulled one back for the Drogs on 69 minutes with their first shot on target, but Bohs keeper Shane Supple made two brilliant stops from Adam Wixted to ensure a comfortable three points for the visitors.
DROGHEDA UTD - McGuinness; Elworthy, Mulcahy, Dunne, Kane; Wixted, Hollywood, Gallagher, Bayly, Byrne; Mulhall. Subs: Purdy for Kane (28), S Brennan for Hollywood (58), Elliott for Bayly (63).
BOHEMIANS - Supple; Pender, Cornwall, O'Hora, Morris; Kavanagh, Ward, Sule, Brennan; Akinade, Corcoran. Subs: Gannon for Akinade (58), Casey for Pender (72), O'Connor for Corcoran (82).
REF - Robert Hennessy (Clare).