Late huff­ing and puff­ing not enough

Bray People - - SPORT -

BRAY WAN­DER­ERS FINN HARPS 2 3

SOME late huff­ing and puff­ing failed to hide a hideously dis­jointed per­for­mance for Bray Wan­der­ers as Finn Harps raided three points from the Carlisle Grounds.

The Seag­ulls, who had beaten Harps home and away ear­lier this sea­son, trailed 0-2 at the break and were then re­duced to 10 men in the sec­ond pe­riod. De­spite this, they twice ral­lied and threat­ened equalis­ers be­fore suc­cumb­ing to a 2-3 de­feat.

Harry Kenny made three changes to his start­ing line-up. Karl Moore, Dar­ragh Noone and Anto Flood re­placed Kevin Lynch, John Sul­li­van and Ja­son Marks re­spec­tively. Fri­day’s match marked Peter Cher­rie’s 73rd con­sec­u­tive league ap­pear­ance – equalling a club record – but he won’t be break­ing it fol­low­ing his dis­missal.

Kil­ian Cantwell was al­most the un­likely source of the opener after six min­utes. Ethan Boyle hurled over a throw-in from the left and it wasn’t prop­erly cleared. It fell to Cantwell and he ac­ro­bat­i­cally shot but it was too close to Cher­rie.

It should have been 0-1 four min­utes later. Sean Hous­ton helped the ball over the Bray de­fence and Ed­die Dsane was in the clear. He needed com­po­sure and a cool head but he lacked it as he lashed a vol­ley over.

Chance num­ber three ar­rived for the vis­i­tors on 17 min­utes. Tim­lin whipped in a corner from the right. Boyle had to stretch to meet it and as a re­sult strug­gled to gen­er­ate suf­fi­cient power but nev­er­the­less it was aimed straight at the Scot­tish shot-stop­per.

Dsane may have been waste­ful ear­lier but he was any­thing but in the 24th minute. Paddy McCourt’s magic set up the chance as he danced a de­light­ful dance down the left flank be­fore re­leas­ing a de­fence-split­ting pass. Dsane made no mis­take as he drilled home.

It should have been 1-1 in the 36th minute. Wan­der­ers showed that they still had a pulse as McCabe sprayed a pass out right for Bren­nan. He bam­boo­zled his man and danced in­side be­fore squar­ing for Anto Flood. With Ciaran Gal­lagher cut out by Bren­nan’s pass, Flood sim­ply had to touch it in from six yards. He of­fered a flail­ing leg but it was some­how kept out by Nathan Boyle in spectacular fash­ion.

Conal McAleer is a very tricky cus­tomer and he al­most dou­bled the vis­i­tors’ lead when he pounced on a loose ball. His pace took him clear and he rode Clancy’s at­tempt to take him down but fired his strike across the face of the goal and wide.

Go­ing in 0-1 down at the break wouldn’t have been a cri­sis for Bray con­sid­er­ing the way the math had panned out but 0-2 was a dif­fer­ent story. Conor Kenna was harshly pe­nalise for a hand­ball from ex­tremely close range and Bray’s de­fen­sive wall gen­er­ously parted to al­low debu­tant Mark Tim­lin to make a good im­pres­sion as he squeezed it through the size­able gap.

Wan­der­ers had two penalty shouts early in the sec­ond half and both should have been given.

Bren­nan was in­volved in the first one as he looked to re­trieve Buck­ley’s deep cross but couldn’t hav­ing been bun­dled over clum­sily from be­hind by Harps goal­keeper Ciaran Gal­lagher.

For the sec­ond, Tim Clancy and Hous­ton were en­joy­ing a wrestling match as Noone de­liv­ered a free and Clancy hit the deck. Sev­eral Bray play­ers charged at An­thony But­timer but their pleas fell on deaf ears.

The of­fi­cial fur­ther en­deared him­self to the home side when dis­miss­ing Cher­rie on 63 min­utes. The Scot was equalling a club record for con­sec­u­tive league ap­pear­ances but he won’t be break­ing it after send­ing Dsane tum­bling after the striker had rounded him.

Salmon had a chance to re­duce the ar­rears when Greene’s free found him but the mid­fielder was fac­ing away from goal so his blind, flicked ef­fort landed in Gal­lagher’s gloves.

Greene gave Bray a life­line on 70 min­utes. Moore sent a rak­ing pass to the right flank which Col failed to in­ter­cept.

This al­lowed Buck­ley to take his time and pick out Greene who tapped home.

Bren­nan al­most lev­elled as his stun­ning vol­ley was matched by Gal­lagher’s ex­cel­lent fin­ger­tip which earned Bray an­other corner.

It looked like Wan­der­ers were dead in the wa­ter with three min­utes to spare as Ibrahim Keita glanced home Nathan Boyle’s cross for his first Harps goal, less than 60 sec­onds after be­ing sprung from the bench.

The fat lady didn’t be­gin her en­sem­ble just yet though as a par­tially cleared corner was ven­omously thumped home by Bren­nan but the 10 men’s bat­tling ef­forts fell short.

Scor­ers - Bray Wan­der­ers 2 (Greene 70, Bren­nan 87), Finn Harps 3 (Dsane 24, Tim­lin 45, Keita 84):

Bray Wan­der­ers: 1. Peter Cher­rie; 6. Keith Buck­ley, 2. Hugh Dou­glas, 5. Conor Kenna, 10. Karl Moore; 22. Dar­ragh Noone, 8. Mark Salmon; 7. Ryan Bren­nan, 11. Gary McCabe, 9. Aaron Greene; 20. Anto Flood. Subs: Tim Clancy for Dou­glas (31); Ja­son Marks for McCabe (H/T); Lee Steacy for Flood (64). Not used:

Aaron Greene and Paddy McCourt in ac­tion in the Carlisle Grounds last Fri­day.

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