Dundalk's Patrick Hoban celebrates scoring their fourth goal of the game with his team-mates. Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Dundalk secure record league points tally as Hoban scores 29th goal of the season

The Lilywhites were too good for manager-less Sligo at Oriel Park tonight.

Dundalk 5
Sligo Rovers 0

Caoimhín Reilly reports from Oriel Park

DUNDALK WERE PRESENTED with the Premier Division trophy tonight after blowing away hapless Sligo Rovers at Oriel Park.

One of their most dominant displays of the campaign, victory ensured the Lilywhites of the top-flight points record — their now 86 beating the tally set by Bohemians in 2008.

This, after breaking the goals record of 78 with Ronan Murray’s effort in Waterford a week earlier. And the Mayo man was heavily involved in the breakthrough here, measuring his lobbed ball to perfection, allowing John Mountney to lift over Ed McGinty on eight minutes.

It capped a stirring opening by the hosts. Top-scorer Patrick Hoban saw his penalty saved on four minutes — after Patrick’s McEleney’s dancing feet had been hacked down inside the area — before Michael Duffy had a strike ruled out for offside.

In front of prospective manager Liam Buckley, Rovers grew into proceedings midway through the first half, but remained answerless to Dundalk’s attacking threat as Duffy added another 12 minutes before half-time, teasing a backtracking Kyle McFadden before firing low to the net.

There was a third for the champions before the interval, Mountney adding another from Dean Jarvis’ cross, bravely beating McGinty in the air.

Before the hour mark, Hoban, who had an attempt cleared off the line by McFadden, finally got his goal, atoning for his earlier miss by stroking to the net from 12 yards after Seán Gannon had been tripped by Liam Kerrigan.

And the Galwegian subsequently diverted his second past McGinty to level Brendan Bradley’s 29-goal haul of 1975-76. The striker only needs one more, in next week’s visit to Bohemians, to become the first Irishman to hit 30 in a season.

The closest the Connacht men came to a goal was through Lee J Lynch’s long-range attempt, which bounced over off the top of the bar, while substitute Lewis Morrison summed up their night by hitting wide of an open goal with the last kick.

Dundalk FC: Gary Rogers; Seán Gannon, Brian Gartland, Seán Hoare, Dean Jarvis (Dane Massey 77); Patrick McEleney, Chris Shields; John Mountney (Dylan Connolly HT), Ronan Murray (Jamie McGrath 63), Michael Duffy; Patrick Hoban

Sligo Rovers: Ed McGinty; Kyle McFadden, John Mahon, Seamus Sharkey, Liam Kerrigan (Darren Collins 74); Lee J Lynch, Jack Keaney (Lewis Morrison 66); Kris Twardek, Rhys McCabe, Adam Wixted (Niall Morahan HT); Mikey Drennan

Referee: Rob Rogers (Dublin)  

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Caoimhín Reilly
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