Bray Wanderers 2 Waterford FC 1
Super-Sub Billy O’Neill came off the bench to register the winner as Bray maintained their 100% start to their U15 EA Sports National League of Ireland Phase 2 (Tier 2) campaign.
Having bagged a treble on Saturday in the 3-2 away victory for the U14’s, the striker headed the 70th minute score under glorious sunshine on Sunday at the Carlisle Grounds.
Waterford had taken the lead through an early penalty. But Rhys Knight levelled before the visitors had a player sent off late on.
Wanderers had begun the competition earlier this month by beating Sligo Rovers 3-2 at Ballycorus. The Blue’s had drawn their first outing 3-3 away with Cobh Ramblers.
The hosts went close to an 11th minute opener when Leon O’Sullivan got to the ball ahead of away custodian Adam Hearne and defender Alan Zborowsk inside the box. But the ball took a slight deflection in the challenge and rolled wide of the gaping goal for a corner.
Sam Baker pulled off a fine tip around the post save on 19 to deny Aaron Cass. But the visitors hit the front moments later.
They were awarded a disputed penalty after a Bray goal-kick which Alex Sheehan slotted to the net.
Max Colbert curled just wide from 20-yards in the 27th minute before his low drive on the half hour was smothered by Hearne.
The Seagulls equalised 18 minutes into the middle third.
Sub Jack Nolan’s pass led to the ball bouncing around the ‘D. Rhys Knight picked up the loose ball and showed great foot work to crack a low drive from 20-yards that nestled in the bottom left corner of the net.
But in the 54th minute, the Munster side almost went back in front. However, Zak O’Sullivan’s 25-yard effort came back off the post.
Wanderers went ahead with 20 minutes to go. Defender Fionn Murray measured a flighted ball into the penalty area from the right of the halfway line. O’Neill got ahead of marker to direct a 12-yard back header up and over Hearne.
But the netminder made a brilliant double save in the 85th minute to twice keep out attempts by Colbert.
Baker brilliantly pushed out Cass’ 89th minute effort. Moments later, Waterford were reduced to ten player when Sheehan was dismissed for a second yellow card.
Bray Wanderers: Sam Baker; Fionn Murray, Alain Kizenga, Ross Young;
Dylan Bourke, Aidan Kane, Ethan Cheese, Roddy Cotter; Rhys Knight; Max Colbert, Leon O’Sullivan.
Subs: James Lonergan, Ciaran Leeson, Jack Nolan, Darragh Emmett, Billy O’Neill, Callum Kenna.
Waterford FC: Adam Hearne; Matt Barrett, Tony Maher, Alan Zborowsk;
Shayne McDonald, Alex Sheehan, Aidan McNamee, Aaron Cass; Scott Collins, Jack Kennedy; Zak O’Sullivan.
Subs: Jamal Yousif, Samuel Laaksonen, Jacob Curran, Artem Izhko.
Referee: Paul Kirwan.
* Bray on the road for the first time in the competition on Sunday July 17. They will take on Klub Kildare at Tougher Park. Kick off is set for 2.30pm
Bray goal-scorers: Rhys Knight and Billy O’Neill.