Cork City stretched their winning run to 14 matches in all competitions when they ended the holders St Pat’s two-year hold on the EA Sports Cup with a fully deserved quarter-final victory at a sun-drenched Turner’s Cross today.
The goals to end St Pat’s three in-a-row bid came on 66 minutes and deep into added time on 92 minutes with Connor Ellis and Stephen Dooley on the score sheet.
Ellis turned the ball home after some excellent link play between Ryan Delaney, Stephen Dooley and Shane Griffin mid-way through the second half and Dooley put the icing on the cake with a superb solo goal in added time and both coming at the St Anne’s end.
It was Ellis’ third goal of the season having scored in the league at home to Galway and away to Drogheda.
The Leesiders made eight changes from the side that beat Bray 2-1 while Liam Buckley made seven to a St Pat’s side that drew 2-2 away to Derry at McGinn Park over the weekend.
Alan Smith made his first competitive start of the season in goal for Cork and young Alec Byrne played in a midfield role having just come back from Ireland U18 duty at the Slovakia Cup.
Smith was in early action saving from Supersaints defender Rory Feely.
Barry Murphy made a dash off his line to clear from Ellis after City’s Greg Bolger picked him out with a through ball as Cork had the better of a goalless first half.
On-loan centre-half Ryan Delaney from Burton Albion twice headed wide from good deliveries by Dooley. There was almost a breakthrough in the game after 37 minutes when John Kavanagh’s solo run took him into the box - he squared for Ellis to hit a first-time shot that rolled just wide of the far post.
Christy Fagan made an impact when he came on for St Pat’s and twice went close to scoring but Dooley’s solo goal brought the 1,792 home crowd to their feet again two minutes into added time as he rounded the keeper to shoot into an empty net.
Smith; Kavanagh (Morrissey 80), McCarthy, Delaney, Griffin; Bolger (capt), Keohane; Dooley, Byrne (Dunleavy 56), Nanetti (Campion half-time); Ellis.
Beattie, Phillips, Drinan & McNulty (not used)
Murphy; Barker, Peers (capt) injured Desmond 24), Feely, Lunney; Cregg; C. Byrne, Kelly, Bayly (Bermingham 67), A. O’Hanlon (Fagan 74); J. O’Hanlon.
Verdon, Markey, K. Byrne & O’Malley (not used) Referee: Sean Grant (Wexford) 7
Galway United and Dundalk are also through to the semi-finals of the EA Sports Cup after victories today.
Galway after they beat Sligo Rovers at the Showgrounds in a penalty shootout.
The sides were scoreless after 90 minutes, while a thrilling extra-time finished two apiece.
Dundalk were 3-0 winners at home to 1st Division side Waterford, thanks to goals from Ciaran Kilduff, Thomas Stewart and Conor Clifford.
The last quarter-final between Shamrock Rovers and Longford Town takes place tomorrow night.