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Dublin: 5 °C Friday 21 February, 2020

Sullivan the hero as 94th-minute winner brings an end to Bray's 10-match losing streak

Derry City left the Carlisle Grounds empty-handed.

John Sullivan celebrates striking late.
John Sullivan celebrates striking late.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Bray 2

Derry 1

Daniel Gorman reports from the Carlisle Grounds

JOHN SULLIVAN EARNED hero status in Bray as his 94th-minute winner ended the Seagulls’ 10-match losing streak in style.

After eight game in charge, it was Gary Cronin’s first positive result for the Seagulls but there were few positives for the Candystripes on a Monday night by the seaside.

Dean Shiels had put his father’s side ahead on the quarter hour mark but Sean Heaney levelled on 26 minutes before Sullivan’s last-gasp heroics.

Shane McNamee almost capped his full debut with a thunderbolt in the 14th minute. Conor Kenna got a decisive clearing header on a Derry free kick but the winger controlled the ball and unleashed a ferocious strike that rattled the underside of the crossbar with Darren Cole’s follow-up ruled out for offside.

City fans only had to wait another minute to have cause for celebration though. Aidy Delap was harrying Sean Heaney back towards his own goal and the defender cheaply coughed up possession and was brutally punished as Delap squared for Dean Shiels to turn home his second goal for the Candystripes.

Ronan Hale dejected Dejection: Ronan Hale afterwards. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Jake Ellis thought he’d levelled matters on 23 minutes when he met Sean Harding’s cross from the right but Jamie McDonagh somehow hurtled himself across the line to nod it away.

An equaliser would arrive by the 26th minute. Kevin Lynch floated in a peach of a deliver from a free kick and Heaney’s deft header looped into the corner to make amends for his role in the opener.

Moran was wrong-footed by Ronan Hale’s low shot before the interval and it looked to be trickling in but an outstretched leg from Paul O’Conor somehow turned it behind.

The Bray shot-stopper would be busy in the second period as he pulled off a string of fine saves to frustrate the visitors and earn his side a point and how vital they would prove as Sullivan nodded home Jake Kelly’s corner deep into stoppage time.

John Sullivan celebrates scoring a late goal Sullivan celebrates. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Bray Wanderers: Evan Moran; Cian Walsh,Conor Kenna, Sean Heaney, Kevin Lynch (Jamie Crilly, 65); Sean Harding, Paul O’Conor, John Sullivan, Darragh Noone (Rhys Gorman, 80); Ger Pender, Jake Ellis (Jake Kelly, 84).

Derry City: Eric Grimes; Jamie McDonagh, Eoin Toal, Darren Cole, Kevin McHattie; Shane McNamee (Aaron McEneff, 61), Aaron Splaine, Dean Shiels (Rory Hale, 67), Aidy Delap (Ben Fisk, 61); Ally Roy, Ronan Hale.

Referee: Neil Doyle.

Attendance: 342.

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About the author:

Dan Gorman

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