Pat's search for a second goal didn't have to wait long. The impressive Gary Molloy raced down the Naas right and found Craig Smithers on the edge of the box, dancing to the right of his marker, Smithers precise right foot shot flew into the top right hand corner – a goal of real quality.
After the break both defences were on top James Murphy the Naas number 2 particularly standing out. As the game edged into the last 15 minutes, Naas raised the tempo. Luke Hilliard began to exert himself in the Naas midfield.
A great through ball seemed to be covered by Pat's defender Eoin Byrne, but did he use his hand to control the ball? The referee thought so and gave Naas a lifeline.
Up stepped Rory Byrne and he calmly dispatched the penalty kick to Carroll's right, 2-1.
Naas pressed again and Pat's needed some great last ditch defending to block a few half chances. Hearts in the mouths stuff as the ball flew around the Pats box.
Then in the last remaining minutes of the game a lightning quick break ended all hopes of a Naas comeback, Keifer Byrne raced from midfield breaking the Naas cover and coolly slid the ball home.
In a thoroughly enjoyable and very sporting game it was Pat's who secured the three points. The win now puts Pat's level on points at the top with St Malachy's who lost 1-0 away to Ballyoulster United.
|11||Galway United FC||16||14|
|12||St. Patrick's Athletic||16||14|