UCD secured a crucial 3-1 win over Bray on Friday night
Report thanks to Cian O'Connell, Irish Independent
Avoiding relegation is UCD's seasonal objective and a third win in four Premier Division matches has seen the Students catch form at the right time.
A surprisingly open and fluid opening quarter was stuffed with chances, but UCD were only able to make one count, while at the opposite end Bray should have been more clinical.
John Mulroy and Kieran Marty Waters twice went close for the visitors before UCD hit the front in the 15th minute when Dave McMillan converted a penalty after Sean Houston had fouled Hugh Douglas in the area.
Opportunities continued to be crafted with Mulroy extracting a decent reflex save from UCD custodian Mark McGinley, but the Students' could have added to their advantage too.
In a freak 20 second spell Danny Ledwith was denied by a Darren Quigley save, McMillan struck the woodwork, and Dean Clarke fizzed an effort wide. Still UCD departed at the break armed with a slender lead, but Bray restored parity 17 minutes after the restart. Waters' corner was sharp, Dane Massey flicked on and the prominent Sean Houston headed the ball over the line. UCD remained calm, though, with Paul O'Conor's sizzling 83rd minute volley edging them ahead and then substitute Chris Lyons decorated the triumph on 86.
Dundalk had been leading Drogheda but ended up losing 3-2 so UCD now sit four points ahead of bottom club Dundalk and travel to play Darius Kierans side at Oriel Park next Friday. UCD are now just three points behind Bray.
UCD: McGinley; Douglas, Leahy, O'Connor; Ledwith, McCabe (Kavanagh, 59), O'Conor, Benson, Nangle; Clarke (Lyons, 65), McMillan.
Bray Wanderers: Quigley; Webster, D O'Connor, Massey; Marshall (Hanlon, 63), K O'Connor (Mitchell, 89), Houston, Zambra, Waters; Mulroy.
Referee: N Doyle (Dublin)