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Homepage image courtesy of Eddie Lennon
David Scully and ten man Bohemians struck late to claim a dramatic 2-2 draw against UCD on Friday night. The Students appeared set to make it four league wins in a row thanks to first half goals from Danny Ledwith and a deflected effort from Paul O’Conor.
However substitute David Scully twice popped up in injury time to wrestle a point from the jaws of defeat.
The second, virtually the last quick of the game, summed up both the individual and team philosophy of ‘never give up’ as Scully pounced in the UCD box to fire home after the hosts failed to clear a Bohs’ corner.
It was a stunning finish to a game full of incident.
The game was still in its embryonic stages when the first flashpoint occurred. After a cagey opening, a hopeful long ball by the hosts didn’t look to be causing Kevin Feely too much trouble until the big defender began to stumble, almost comically, just yards from his own box.
The lightning quick Danny Ledwith pipped Feely of possession on the edge of the box as the Bohs’ man made a desperate lunge for the ball, catching the attacker in the process. As the last defender, referee Sean Grant deemed the defender has stopped a goal scoring chance and produced red.
Things quickly went even further south for Aaron Callaghan’s men as Ledwith curled the resulting free kick into the top corner of Greg Murray’s goal.
Having begun the game with an adventurous 3-4-3 formation, the dismissal meant Bohs needed a complete tactical revamp and they struggled for the remainder of the half as the Students completely bossed territory and possession.
Martin Russell’s men looked particularly dangerous down the right where the industrious Hugh Douglas linked up with Dean Clarke time and time again.
The central midfield partnership of Paul O’Conor and Barry McCabe also caused problems for the visitors. The latter went very close on 26 minutes with a half-volley that was blocked behind.
But by that stage it was already 2-0 and second the goal came about in as equally bizarre circumstances as the first. Paul O’Conor’s low, speculative 30 yard effort didn’t appear to be causing Murray any trouble until a deflection on route to goal completely wrong-footed the despairing keeper.
After the ball rolled home, the stadium announcer awarded O’Conor the goal but the debate will go on until Monday night, at least.
The Students should have led by far more at the break but Bohs had a combination of Greg Murray and sheer good luck to thank for the score line remaining respectable.
The Students recommenced their bombardment of the Bohemians’ goal after the restart with a Paul O’Conor free kick going right across Murray’s goal. The smallest touch would surely have wrapped the game up.
Bohs never gave up but created almost nothing in the way of clear goal scoring chances for 90 minutes. Substitute Derek Pender nodded over on the hour mark after Ryan McEvoy had clipped a free into the UCD box.
Dinny Corcoran and Dave Scully were sprung from the bench halfway through the second half and the introduction latter in particular, would prove a masterstroke. Just before the late, late show, Derek Pender slipped the ball inside for Dave Mulcahy on 70 minutes but on the slide, the midfielder’s shot was a yard the wrong side of the post.
UCD maintained their attacking threat throughout, though chances became more sporadic late on. David McMillan spurned a great chance one-on-one with Murray but credit to Roberto Lopez for applying good pressure.
But in the dying moments, the visitors finally found some resolve and managed to pull one back when substitute Scully controlled to fire past Barron from just inside the box.
And two minutes after the indicated three minutes of injury time had elapsed, Scully reacted first following a Bohemians’ corner to break college hearts and hand Bohemians an undeserved point.
UCD: Ger Barron; Hugh Douglas (Sean Russell, 81), David O’Connor, Michael Leahy, Ciaran Nangle; Dean Clarke (Chris Mulhall, 66), Paul O’Conor, Barry McCabe (James Kavanagh, 58), Danny Ledwith; Robbie Benson, David McMillan.
Subs not used: Niall Corbet, Samir Belhout, Chris Lyons, Gary Burke.
Booked: Russell (90+2).
Bohemians: Greg Murray; Owen Heary, Kevin Feely, Roberto Lopes; Michael Barker, John O’Connor (Derek Pender, 28), Dave Mulcahy, Ryan McEvoy, Karl Moore (Dave Scully, 66); Kevin Devenney (Dinny Corcoran, 66), Evan McMillan.
Subs not used: Adam Martin, Luke Byrne, Stephen Traynor, Andy McNulty.
Booked: Pender (87).
Sent Off: Feely (5).
Referee: Sean Grant.
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Dave Scully (Bohemians).