|Match Report||They almost lost their grip but St Patrick's Athletic are still hanging on to Bohemians' coat tails by the tips of their fingers.|
And it was former Bohs right-back Damien Lynch, captain on the night, who popped up in injury-time to revive the Saints' title hopes.
Should the Gypsies beat Drogheda United tomorrow night the Inchicore club will still trail their rivals by 10 points and with the visit of Elfsborg this week in the UEFA Cup and the resumption of the Setanta Cup on the horizon, John McDonnell's men looked to be flagging.
But the captain showed up when he was most needed, resurrecting a tired effort after Richard Brush's save from Keith Fahey fell into his path and he bundled it over.
Sligo had the better of the opening exchanges and could have had a dream start had their forwards been as alert as right full Seamus Coleman burst into the box and delivered a tantalising ball that Ryan Guy cleared.
Keith Fahey then skipped past Conor O'Grady before being scythed down by Gavin Peers. The midfielder dusted himself off and delivered a threatening free-kick that Richard Brush punched away.
The best chance of the half came from the unlikely creative force that is Jason Gavin. The centre half, forward for a corner, took the ball wide of the Sligo defence and his cross found the head of Mark Quigley, Brush saving well.
Pat's pushed in the second period but they still lacked the spark that was so apparent earlier in the season.
At that time everything Fahey touched turned to gold but here he was wasteful spurning three glorious chances at different times from the same position.
Perhaps the best came on the hour mark when he ran on to a loose ball in the box but scuffed his shot and Brush saved. Minutes later O'Grady's brilliant block denied the playmaker as he wound up to shoot.
The home side did have two good late shouts for a penalty both refused the crowd any excitement by waving away protests when first Alan Kirby and then Fahey went down in the area.
Then Lynch delivered a spark of life that was sorely lacking, capitalising on another Fahey miss to save the Saints.
© Irish Independent
St Patrick's Athletic
Barry Ryan; Lynch, Gavin, O'Cearuill (Brennan 74), Rogers; Guy, Dempsey, Fahey, Bobby Ryan (Kirby 70); O'Neill, Quigley.
Brush; Coleman, Peers, Almeida, Butler; Cash, O'Grady, Ryan, Doherty (Feeney 48); Boco, Cretaro (McDaid 86).
Referee: A. Buttimer