Derry City secured a 6-0 win over UCD at the UCD Bowl in front of a disappointingly small crowd on Friday night. Rory Patterson netted a first half hat-trick with Thomas Crawley, Michael Rafter and Mark Griffin putting the win beyond doubt against the hapless students, who had captain David O'Connor sent off.
The game started at a frantic pace, Kevin Deery sliding Mark Griffin through, but UCD stopper Ger Barron beat him to the ball.
It only took eight minutes for the scoring to begin, when a routine back pass from centre back Hugh Douglas found Barron and he tried to turn Rory Patterson inside out, but was caught out and the experienced striker buried the ball into an empty net.
Some sloppy play from Derry allowed David McMillan UCD’s first chance, his rasping drive forcing Ger Doherty into his first save of the game.
At the other end, Thomas Crawley had a shot blocked and watched as the ball fell nicely to Ruaidhri Higgins, but his shot dipped just over the bar.
The Candystripes’ second came on the 26 minute mark when James Kavanagh misplaced a back pass straight into the path of Patterson, and he calmly slotted the ball past.
Ger Barron's poor night only grew worse when he handled the ball outside the box and from the resulting free, Patterson completed a first half hat-trick with a low drive under the wall. Barron and David O'Connor were booked for verbals in the aftermath of the goal.
With six minutes of the half remaining, a goalmouth scramble ensued following a Russell corner, but despite numerous attempts on goal, none found their way past Derry stopper Doherty.
A triple substitution by Students boss Martin Russell saw his team switch to a 3-5-2 formation but little changed as a mazy run from Thomas Crawley finished with a drilled shot past Barron.
On 54 minutes some good interchanging play from Crawley, Molloy and Griffin saw the latter's shot blocked by David O'Connor's back.
A few minutes later, UCD finally made some progress into the Derry half as league debutant and Ireland youth international Sean Coyne clipped a cross towards Robbie Creevy, but he failed to connect from close range.
The home team were down to 10 on 66 minutes when David O'Connor lunged in on Griffin. It was adjudged a foul and the stand-in captain was given his marching orders for a second yellow card.
It only took five minutes for substitute Michael Rafter to unleash a lightning bolt of a strike into the top corner, leaving Barron with no chance and making it 5-0.
And it wasn’t over there, as with four minutes left on the clock, Tony McNamee squared the ball to Mark Griffin, who tapped home from inside the six-yard box.
It could have become worse again for UCD when Simon Madden volleyed over the bar with a few minutes on the clock and skied an effort from just a few yards when played through towards a nearly open goal in injury time — an early contender for miss of the season.
UCD: Ger Barron; Gareth Matthews, David O'Connor, Hugh Douglas (Thomas Boyle 46), Sean Coyne; James Kavanagh, Sean Russell, Dean Clarke (Dniel ‘Dinny’ Corcoran 46), Gary Burke, Robbie Benson (Robbie Creevy 46); David McMiilan.
Subs not used: Mark McGinley, Tyrone McNeilis, Craig Walsh, Samir Belhout.
Booked: Barron, O'Connor.
Sent Off: O'Connor.
Derry City: Ger Doherty; Simon Madden, Ryan McBride, Shane McEleney, Barry McNamee; Ruaidhri Higgins, Kevin Deery (Tony McNamee 68), Barry Molloy, Thomas Crawley (Michael Duffy 79); Mark Griffin, Rory Patterson (Michael Rafter 68).
Subs not used: James Gallagher, Ryan Curran, Conall Kelly.
Booked: Michael Rafter 78.
Referee: Sean Grant
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Rory Patterson (Derry City).