With the visitors starting with three unnamed trialists on the team-sheet, a straight 4-4-2 saw Gearóid Morrissey make his first start of the season along with new signing Shane Griffin. Not that it took long for the Rebel Army to gel, mind, Karl Sheppard profiting from a deflected Ramblers clearance to send in trialist Alex Yakuba to smash the ball past a helpless Paul Hunt.
That Yakuba/Sheppard partnership was bearing fruit for John Caulfield’s side and, after Morrissey fired just over from a free-kick routine, Sheppard again provided the dog-work 20 minutes in, but ‘Trialist B’ fluffed his lines trying to finish across his body. Two minutes later and it was two of City’s trialists who combined, as Christian Nanetti’s powerful run saw him buy some space, before a floated cross allowed Yakuba to head low, but Paul Hunt was equal to the effort.
A goal up at half-time, the visitors may have felt short-changed, but made amends less than a minute into the second period, as a Griffin corner was only half-cleared, and Sheppard’s speculative effort was deflected past Hunt to give the winger a deserved, if slightly fortunate, goal of his own.
The Rams were struggling to gain any territory, as the Premier Division side dominated possession, and another penetrating run by Sheppard saw him taken down by Ian Mylod and, with Nanetti and Yakuba fighting over the penalty, Sheppard took responsibility and stuck it into the left-hand corner.
However, the best was reserved until last, as Cobh’s Jason Abbott stepped up from 25-yards and curled the goal of the evening past a scrambling McNulty and into the top left-hand corner.
P Hunt (M Sadys 78); C Fleming (S Lowth 75), C McCarthy, R Hogan (C Kingston 63), S McCarthy (K McNamara 63); S Christopher (E McGreevy 77), C Donnellan (D Murphy 75), J Abbott, I Mylod; K Caulfield (J Creamer 78); D Swords.
M McNulty; S Beattie, K Browne, R Delaney, S Griffin; A Trialist (C McCormack 46), K Sheppard, G Buckley (G Bolger 63), G Morrissey (A O’Sullivan 75), C Nanetti (G Manley 75); A Yakuba (C Ellis 63).
A Buttimer (Cork)
UCD 0 Derry City 3.