Date: 7:45 p.m. May 30, 2011
Venue: The UCD Bowl
UCD were proving their ‘bogey side’ status when David O’Connor equalised for the Students following Derek Doyle’s opening goal for the Saints on 11 minutes.
However second half goals from the Saints in-form forward partnership of Daryl Kavanagh and Danny North ensured that the Inchicore side claimed the three points.
The Saints made three changes from their victory over Sligo Rovers last week, and it appeared to have a positive effect on the away side as they came out of the blocks quickly and took control of the contest.
On seven minutes, Danny North forced UCD’s Ger Barron into action as he met Derek Doyle’s cross on the volley, but the keeper easily saved the weak strike on goal. Three minutes later, a long ball from Pats left-back Jake Carroll found the run of North, but David O’Connor recovered to clear for a corner before the striker could get his shot in.
However from the resulting corner, the Saints played the ball short to Daryl Kavanagh, and the striker’s cross was nodded across goal by Evan McMillan for Derek Doyle to tap in from close range. The away side’s domination continued as North found himself in front goal again, only for his lob over Barron to end on the roof of the net.
The dual between North and Barron continued on 21 minutes, this time the former Grimsby Town forward forcing the keeper into making a good reflex save when his shot look destined for the top corner.
UCD managed to threaten from the following corner though, as Dean Marshall’s quick raid forward was brought to an abrupt halt by Jake Carroll, the full-back seeing yellow for his challenge.
The attack by the Students was the first time they managed to stretch the visitors defence and a sign that they were getting a grip with Pete Mahon’s men, and from their first corner of the game, the home side equalised.
Paul Corry’s dangerous inswinging corner from the right was not properly dealt with by the Saints defence, and when the ball dropped to Dean Marshall on the right, the wingers cross found the head of David O’Connor who headed past Gary Rogers.
The goal against the run of play muted the strong away support, and their side similarly failed to retain the dominance they previously had in the game as the two sides went in at the break level. The opening stages of the second half continued in a similar vein, with UCD looking the sharper side, Seán Harding’s cross dangerously running across Rogers’ goal.
However Saints boss Pete Mahon quickly moved to change the game as former UCD star Shane McFaul was introduced, with the midfielder’s introduction improving St. Pats passing game.
On 66 minutes, Pats felt they were harshly treated as Kavanagh appeared to go down under a challenge from UCD full-back Seán Harding, however referee Rob Rogers waved away the strikers plea for a penalty.
Any frustration that Kavanagh and the Saints felt though was soon forgotten as the striker put them back in front just two minutes later. After Seán Harding cleared a Jordan Keegan cross out for a corner, Stephen Bradley’s inswinging corner was headed in at the near post by Kavanagh.
UCD failed to recover from the goal and found themselves further behind the Inchicore outfit. The returning Dave Mulcahy surged through the UCD midfield to find Danny North in space on the right side of the box, and the striker’s shot this time was too much for Ger Barron to deal with.
With the game looking over, the Saints eased to a 3-1 victory and now look forward to their FAI Cup clash on Friday with Crumlin United, while UCD can enjoy the distraction of the cup themselves as they face the challenge of another non-league side, Cherry Orchard.
UCD: Ger Barron; Seán Harding (Cillian Morrison 78), David O’Connor, Tomás Boyle, Ciarán Nangle; Dean Marshall, Paul O’Conor, Robbie Benson (Stephen Doyle 66), Paul Corry (c), Darren Meenan; Graham Rusk. Subs Not Used: Mark McGinley, Daniel Ledwith, James Kavanagh, Sean Russell, Samir Belhout.
St Pats: Gary Rogers; Derek Pender, Evan McMillan, Brian Shortall, Jake Carroll; Jordan Keegan (Seán Stewart 74), Dave Mulcahy, Stephen Bradley (c), Derek Doyle (Shane McFaul 58); Daryl Kavanagh (Dave McMillan 92), Danny North. Subs Not Used: Chris Bennion, Ian Daly, Ian Bermingham, Paul Crowley.
Referee: Rob Rogers.
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Danny North