Waterford United proved too strong for neighbours Wexford Youths in what was the league newcomers’ first competitive match at the RSC.
United opened the scoring after five minutes when John Hayes converted from close range following a cross from Robert Brosnan that was flicked on by Vinnie Sullivan.
Wexford were reduced to ten men after 32 minutes when Diarmuid Fitzpatrick was dismissed by referee Padraig Sutton after he was shown a second yellow card.
The visitors were under constant pressure throughout the first half but their defence held out bravely until three minutes before the interval when the unfortunate Justin Power sliced the ball into his own net as he attempted to cut out an Alan Mulcahy cross from the right.
United completely dominated the second period but wasted a hatful of opportunities to increase their lead until Willie Bruton bundled Shane Harte’s header from a Mulcahy cross over the line ten minutes from the end.
Waterford United: Delaney, Scully, Flynn, Hayes (Casey, 85 minutes), Brosnan, Reynolds (Harte, halftime), Mulcahy, McCarthy, Sullivan (McDonald, 69 minutes), Bruton, Warren. Substitutes not used: O’Shea, Holden.
Wexford Youths: Dunphy, Bolger, Margolin, Hawkins, Bradley (Miller, 62 minutes), Power (White, 74 minutes), G. Murphy, Fitzpatrick, Colfer (Flynn O’Connor, 62 minutes), J. Murphy, Dunning. Substitutes not used: Wadding, Sinnott.
Referee: Padraig Sutton, Clare.