Two goal Sean Houston was the hero in a win that moves Harps eight clear of second bottom Wexford Youths, who lost 4-1 to St Patrick’s Athletic.
Harps began positively with the attack minded Sean Houston heading just over early on while Ryan Curran saw a goal-bound effort blocked on the line by Conor Kenna.
Harps took the lead on 11 minutes when Adam Hanlon whipped in a free from the left and Houston rose in a crowded area to head home from close range. It was Harps’ first home goal since Houston’s winner against Galway on July 8.
However, Bray, who had scored 13 goals while conceding just three in their past five games, almost drew level on 18 minutes when Hugh Douglas was denied by an acrobatic save from Ciaran Gallagher. At the other end Peter Cherrie had to get down low to save from Ryan Curran.
Curran saw a speculative effort early in the second half hit the woodwork before Houston connected with a Keith Cowan flick to steer in Harps’ second goal on 67 minutes. Bray pulled one back on 74 minutes when Dean Kelly capitalised on a defensive mix-up to set up an exciting finish that saw having a late penalty plea turned down.
Gallagher; Boyle, McNulty, Cowan, Coll; Funston (J. Mailey 68 mins), Molloy, Harkin, Hanlon (McNamee, 83); Houston; Curran (Banda, 90).
Cherrie; Douglas, Clancy, Kenna, Lynch; Moore, Noone (Lyons, 83), Sullivan, Salmon (Brennan, 58 mins); Pender (Kelly, 58 mins), Connolly.
P. McLaughlin (Monaghan).