Bray Wanderers 3 Sligo Rovers 2
Bray came from behind to get their EA SPORTS MU15 LOI Academy – Tier Two (North) Group off to a winning start.
Wanderers went one up against Sligo at Ballycorus on Sunday afternoon. But Rovers hit back to go 2-1.
Yet, the Seasiders rallied to take the points in the five-goal thriller with Republic of Ireland international grabbing Billy O’Neill’s winner.
The hosts broke the deadlock in the 19th minute. After good work down the left initially by Evan Lynch, the ball was played into Sean Hennelly. He linked up with Cristiano Bramley to slot the ball past away goalkeeper Zach Gethins.
But the Bit O’Red were back level just three minutes later. Cathair Tighe got on the end of corner to find the net with a powerful header.
The visitors then took the lead midway through the second period with Darragh McKeon on the mark.
But just before the hour mark, the Wicklow club restored parity.
O’Neill got taken down in the box before he could get a shot away. And Sean Hennelly converted the penalty to make it 2-2.
The final period became frantic with both teams putting pressure on each of their opponents defence.
But men of the match performances from the de dive duo of Calum Kenna and Noah Byrne gave the platform for Bray to go on to win the game.
That came off from a brilliant shot in the 69th minute by O’Neill despite being under pressure from Sligo centre half Daire Leonard-O’Connor.
Bray Wanderers: Alex Forde; Ryan Bell Mihaila, Callum Kenna, Noah Byrne, Evan Lynch; Joshua O’Leary, Sean Howard; Cristiano Bramley, Sean Hennelly, Darragh Sherlock; Billy O’Neill.
Subs: Tadhg Worthington, Max Free, Jake Fulton, Harry Grainger, Kai McSwiggan.
* Bray are scheduled to face Dundalk on Sunday July 9 at Oriel Park.
Bray goal scorers Sean Hennelly, Billy O’Neill and Cristiano Bramley.