Treaty United 1 Bray Wanderers 1
Bray picked up a point on the road for the first time in three matches by playing out a 1-1 draw with Treaty.
But in a game reflective of the 2023 SSE Airtricity League First Division season so far, it was a case of what might have been at a damp Markets Field on Friday.
The visitors had the better of chances but failed to them, while also contributing to the United’s equaliser.
From the team who’d beaten Kerry 3-2 last week, there was two changes.
Len O’Sullivan and Guillermo Almirall came in while Conor Davis was restored to the bench.
After heavy rain before kick-off, the Seagulls went ahead in the fifth minute.
Colin Conroy’s under hit back-pass was capitalised on by Ben Feeney. The 20-year-old rounded home goalkeeper Shane Hallahan and slid the ball into an empty net from 15-yards for his eighth goal of the season.
United almost hit back in the seventh minute. But Dean George failed to find the target inside the penalty rea after William Ramshaw’s threaded pass.
Wanderers went close to doubling their lead in the 11th minute. Feeney got on the end of Conor Crowley’s free. Hallahan parried the header then got a vital touch to prevent Chris Lyons tapping in.
The Limerick outfit – somewhat against the run of play – equalised in the 15th minute.
Almirall’s intended cross-field ball was cut out by Marc Ludden. His measured through ball picked out the run of Enda Curran to get in behind the away rearguard and lob past the advancing Stephen McGuinness from 22-yards.
Almost immediately, Feeney broke from the left. But the home custodian made a fine save at his near post.
Then in the 24th minute, Feeney’s stinging 16-yard drive was superbly tipped over the bar by Hallahan.
Bray lost skipper Dave Webster to injury soon after. Before half time, Almirall did well initially in the box. But flashed his effort wide.
With the second period starting off misty as the conditions deteriorated somewhat, Max Murphy crossed from the right on 54 with Lyons’ sliding attempt falling straight to Hallahan.
In the 64th minute, Murphy’s corner saw sub Ger Shortt get a touch. The ball ran to Feeney’s who attempt was charged down for another corner.
Having been pinned back, the Shannonsiders threatened in the 67th minute. George met Ludden’s free with a header. But McGuinness gathered at the second attempt.
With three minutes of normal time remaining, both Shortt and Feeney didn’t shoot in the penalty area. The ball ran to sub Jake Walker. He went down as space opened up with Hallahan gathering the loose ball.
Yet, the away side almost won in deep into stoppage time.
Murphy whipped in a cross from the right flank. Walker nodded down in the path of Luca Lovic. But in on goal close in, he was thwarted by Hallahan’s point-blank block.
The result leaves Bray still in fifth place – in the last play-off berth – but now level on points (separated by goal difference) with Athlone Town.
Treaty United: Shane Hallahan; Ben O’Riordan, Andrew Spain, Darren Nwankwo, Marc Ludden; Lee Devitt, Colin Conroy; Dean George
Stephen Christopher, William Armshaw (Colin Kelly 88), Enda Curran (Josh Quinlivan 79).
Subs not used: Nikodem Kozlowski, Scott Kirkland, Darren Collins, Fionn Doherty, Robbie Lynch, Mark Murphy, Conor Winn.
Bray Wanderers: Stephen McGuinness; Max Murphy, David Webster (Cole Omorehiomwan 26), Dane Massey, Len O’Sullivan; Conor Crowley (Ger Shortt half time), Luka Lovic, Guillermo Almirall (Jake Walker 58); Darren Craven (Joe Power 81), Chris Lyons (Callum Thompson 81), Ben Feeney.
Subs not used: Jack Hudson, Conor Davis, Conor Knight, Alex Moody.
Booked: Massey 66, Shortt 74.
Referee: Daniel Murphy.