TREATY United and Wexford FC played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in their First Division league clash at Ferrycarrig Park on Friday night.
Treaty opened the scoring in the opening stages with a great individual goal from Dean George but Aaron Dobbs restored parity just two minutes later for the home side to ensure a share of the spoils.
Treaty made two changes from the last league outing with Munster rivals Waterford FC as Mark Walsh replaced Sean Guerins at centre-back and Jack Lynch replaced the now departed Charlie Fleming at right-back.
Treaty began with a 4-3-3 formation with George leading the line supported by Matt Keane on the right and Conor Melody on the left. Joe Collins, Lee Devitt and Callum McNamara were tasked with competing with the trio of Conor Crowley, Luka Lovic and Harry Groome in midfield.
There was a frenetic start from both sides as Marc Ludden’s poor clearance fell to Jack Doherty who played in Aaron Dobbs but his tame effort was gathered by Jack Brady. In Treaty’s first foray into the opposition half, former Wexford man George collected possession in a deep position and drove forward, beating Paul Cleary before burying a shot into the bottom corner despite the best efforts of Alex Moody in the Wexford goal.
The home side responded well and had equalised within two minutes when Lynch and Devitt played themselves into trouble resulting in a rushed Walsh clearance being charged down by Dobbs before his effort deflected into the net via a Joe Gorman deflection. Prior to the game, many analysts had spoken about both sides’ defensive frailties and these were exposed early on.
Treaty were playing against a strong wind in the first half but Tommy Barrett’s side were the next to create a big chance when Keane played the ball back to Lynch from a throw in on the right and the full back sent in a dangerous cross which Melody fired goalwards but it deflected wide.
Wexford responded when Treaty gifted them an opportunity as Cleary’s long ball caused a mix up in the defence between Jack Brady and Walsh which allowed Dobbs a free shot but the striker managed to scuff his effort wide as he didn’t realise the amount of time he had to convert.
With less than ten minutes remaining in the first half, Wexford’s Crowley played a neat one-two with team-mate Conor Davis before scooping the ball over Brady and just wide of the posts. As the half-time whistle approached, Davis had a second chance as a late run into the box saw him header Doherty’s cross over the crossbar and referee Oliver brought an end to first half proceedings.
Treaty were forced into a half-time change as Walsh picked up an injury in the early clash with his own teammate Jack Brady and was replaced by Colin Conroy. Conroy took up a position in midfield with Callum McNamara reverting to centre-back.
Wexford dominated possession for the first five minutes of the second period but it was George who had the first chance of the second period as he headed Ludden’s free-kick delivery over the bar.
Treaty had joy against Wexford from set-pieces in both previous meetings this season and created a number of half chances before Joe Gorman forced a great save from Alex Moody from a Ludden delivery.
Right-back Lynch was beginning to make regular forays into the Wexford half and from one of his crosses, Conroy picked up possession on the edge of the box and was denied by Moody.
It was clear that Treaty were targeting the set-piece area and a dangerous delivery was partially cleared by Lovic but Joe Collins followed up with a strike that was blocked before Keane blazed over.
With ten minutes remaining, Aidan Friel secured possession and produced a first time cross which was volleyed over by Doherty. Ian Ryan’s side came exceptionally close to taking the lead when a floated ball from Lorcan Fitzgerald was nodded into the path of Doherty by substitute Dinny Corcoran but the playmaker volleyed wide from inside the penalty area.
Steven Christopher made a welcome return from injury as a late substitution along with Joel Coustrain and although both players were industrious, the final ball was lacking. Neither team looked like taking all three points after Doherty’s miss and as Moran brought a halt to proceedings, Treaty maintained their three point advantage over Wexford and remain in fifth place in the Airtricity League First Division table.
Treaty take on Athlone Town at the Markets Field next Friday night.
Wexford FC: Alex Moody, Aidan Friel, Paul Cleary, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Len O’Sullivan (Adam Wells 70), Conor Crowley, Luka Lovic, Harry Groome (Thomas Considine 70), Conor Davis (Conor Barry 70) , Jack Doherty, Aaron Dobbs (Dinny Corcoran 83)
Treaty United: Jack Brady, Jack Lynch, Mark Walsh (Colin Conroy H/T), Joe Gorman, Marc Ludden, Joe Collins, Callum McNamara, Lee Devitt, Matt Keane (Steven Christopher 76), Conor Melody (Jack Arra 85), Dean George (Joel Coustrain 76)