Dundalk picked up their first league win of the season on Friday evening as they came from behind to secure victory over Limerick FC at Oriel Park.
Goals either side of half-time from strike duo Patrick Hoban and Kurtis Byrne turned the match in Dundalk's favour after they had fallen behind to a Shane Tracy strike on 15 minutes.
Dundalk began the brighter of the two sides and were passing the ball with purpose, which allowed David McMillan to break through the defence before being blocked by Shane Costelloe.
Despite the bright start, the Lilywhites fell behind in what was a bizarre opening goal. After winning a free-kick 40 yards out, Limerick skipper Shane Tracy opted to shoot. His effort looked like a routine catch for goalkeeper Peter Cherrie but was fumbled by the goalkeeper and despite his best efforts, it went over the line.
The hosts were stunned by the concession. However, they responded well and Limerick had their goalkeeper Shane Cusack to thank for keeping them in the game.
First, Patrick Hoban tested the netminder with a stinging shot which was turned past the post, and then a wonderful ball from Richie Towell found McMillan on the right and his shot was brilliantly saved by Ryan.
A flowing move then saw Towell find Stephen O'Donnell who laid it off to Daryl Horgan and his shot, which looked destined for the net, whistled past Ryan's left hand post.
The Oriel Park side were well on top and a Darren Meenan corner was flicked on by the returning Brian Gartland and it found his centre-half partner Andy Boyle, but his header was straight at Cusack.
The Lilywhites pressure eventually told five minutes before half-time when Towell found Meenan on the right and his excellently floated cross went beyond the reach of Cusack and it was left to Hoban to head into the empty net to see Dundalk deservedly on level terms at the break.
Limerick almost re-took the lead immediately after the re-start when a pass towards Boyle from O'Donnell went astray and Rory Gaffney ran onto it. But his weak effort was straight at Cherrie.
Dundalk should have gone in front when a Meenan cross found Hoban but he couldn't direct his header goalwards. The Lilywhites had another chance when Meenan's deep cross fell onto the boot of Horgan but the former Cork City star's effort was inches past the post.
Hoban then went close again when he shot just wide before O'Donnell blasted wildly over the bar trying to recreate his effort from Monday evening.
Eventually Dundalk got the goal their efforts deserved on 80 minutes when Meenan dispossessed Tracy in midfield. He then played the perfect pass to Hoban whose shot was saved by Ryan but the ball went across goal and substitute Kurtis Byrne headed home despite the best efforts of Stephen Folan.
Hoban went close again with a header following a Meenan cross and Towell skewed wide from the edge of the area when under pressure from Tony Whitehead. Horgan had yet another chance to get on the scoresheet but his effort was brilliantly saved by Cusack once more.
Towell almost added a third just before full-time when his hooked shot went just past the right hand post and that proved to be the final action as Stephen Kenny's troops ended their Limerick hoodoo and secured their first victory in league competition over the Shannonsiders since 2006.
Dundalk: Peter Cherrie; Mark Rossiter (Sean Gannon 63), Brian Gartland, Andy Boyle, Dane Massey; Richie Towell, Stephen O'Donnell (c); Darren Meenan, Daryl Horgan (John Mountney 88), David McMillan (Kurtis Byrne 68); Patrick Hoban.
Subs not used: Chris Shields, Ruaidhri Higgins, Mark Griffin, Gabriel Sava (GK)
Limerick FC: Shane Cusack; Shaun Kelly, Patrick Nzuzi (Prince Ayemang 82), Stephen Folan, Shane Costelloe; Jason Hughes, Tony Whitehead, James McGrath (Val Feeney 81), Shane Tracy (c); Garbhan Coughlan (Darragh Rainsford 54), Rory Gaffney.
Subs not used: Colm Murphy, Barry Sheedy, Ali Abass (GK)
Booked: Costelloe (35), Tracy (52), Hughes (59), Whitehead (76).
Referee: Paul McLaughlin.
Extratime.ie man of the match: Daryl Horgan (Dundalk).