College almost took the lead early on when a cross from Paul O’Conor enabled Robbie Creevy to get in a spectacular overhead effort, brilliantly pushed over by Sligo ‘keeper Brendan Clarke. From the resulting corner in the eighth minute Benson was able to head home at the near post. It was the first home league goal for College in 278 minutes of league football.
Joseph Ndo headed wide for the visitors early in the second half after a Richie Ryan corner on the right. Then after Benson was taken down by defender Gavin Peers, Marshall shot over the bar with his free form the edge of the box.
The students extended their lead on 59 minutes when Darren Meenan’s effort was blocked by a wall of Sligo defenders, but Rusk was on hand to apply the vital finishing touch.
Substitute Mathew Blinkhorn did grab a consolation goal for Sligo on 83 minutes when his effort from the edge of the box took a deflection off Michael Leahy and past the diving Clarke.
UCD: Ger Barron; Paul O’Conor, Michael Leahy, Yael Haro, Ciaran Nangle; Darren Meenan, Robbie Benson, Robbie Creevy (Daniel Ledwith, 62), Paul Corry, Dean Marshall; Graham Rusk (Samir Belhout, 77).
SLIGO ROVERS: Brendan Clarke; Iarfhlaith Davoren, Jason McGuinness, Gavin Peers, Alan Keane; John Russell, Joseph Ndo (Aaron Greene, 77), Richie Ryan, John Dillon (Daryl Horgan, 61), Raffaele Cretaro (Mathew Blinkhorn,69); Eoin Doyle.
Referee: Graham Kelly (Cork).