A last gasp header from Paul O’Conor gave Limerick a well-deserved point against pace-setters Dundalk. Richie Towell had fired the Lilywhites ahead, in front of 720 at Jackman Park.
The first opening of the evening fell to Dean Clarke. The striker, without a league goal thus far, was blocked expertly by Aidan Boyle. Limerick gave as good as they got early on but struggled to open up the Champions.
Despite their lack of creativity, a Robbie Williams header almost opened the scoring as Limerick went in search of their first win of the season.
At the other end the in-form David McMillian thought he should have had a penalty but referee McKeon waved away the appeals. Both Paudie O’Connor and Aidan Price were a match for him throughout as McMillan struggled to give Dundalk an outlet.
In a game that lacked real urgency it was the scraps off a dead ball that was to provide the lead goals. Richie Towell, who displayed hunger throughout, finding the net for the Lilywhites.
Robbie Williams headed clear a corner only for the midfielder to fire home expertly from 25 yards. The ball flew in and out of the top-corner giving the hosts a lead. The 150 visiting fans were delirious as they looked to continue their 100% start to the season.
The second period was broken up with a flurry of cards. Both sides pressed well and didn’t allow either side to settle on the ball. Darren Meenan was fouled by O’Connor after hounding the 17-year-old off the ball.
Goal attempts were few and far between but Ian Turner’s weak header was the best of a rare bunch for Limerick. Dean Clarke did have a great opportunity late on. Clarke fired at Gary Rogers after Paddy Barrett misjudged a Robbie Williams through-ball. The shot proved to be Rogers first and only notable save all evening.
Substitute John Mountney looked to be in position to settle the game, only for Williams to deny him a shot with a wonderful sliding tackle. Then, as the fourth official was about to signal three added minutes Limerick found their reward.
A Darragh Rainsford throw in was flicked over the head of Gary Rogers by Paudie O'Connor before and nodded home by Paul O’Conor. The bulk inside Limericks temporary home left in delight as a share of the spoils suddenly became a reality. Ronan Finn fired at O’Donnell late on, but the Limerick keeper did well to dive on the rebound. Limerick, though still without a win will be delighted to have stifled the Dundalk juggernaut.
Limerick FC: Conor O’Donnell; Seán Harding, Aidan Price, Paudie O’Connor, Robbie Williams; Shane Duggan, Paul O’Conor, Jason Hughes (Vinny Faherty 67), Sean Russell (Darragh Rainsford 87), Ian Turner; Dean Clarke.
Subs not Used: Tommy Holland (gk), Tony Whitehead, Val Fenney, Conor Maguire, Séan McSweeney
Booked: Williams (36), O’Connor (50), O’Conor (55), Duggan (65).
Dundalk: Gary Rodgers; Sean Gannon, Brian Gartland (Paddy Barrett 46), Andy Boyle ©, Dane Massey; Chris Shields, Ronan Finn, Richie Towell, Darren Meenan, Daryl Horgan (John Mountney 74); David McMillian (Kurtis Byrne 77).
Subs not Used: Gabriel Sava (gk), Stephen O’Donnell, Shane Grimes, Ciarán O’Connor.
Booked: S Gannon (56), Towell (75).
Referee: Dave McKeon
Extratime Man of the Match: Shane Duggan (Limerick FC)