Championship round-up, August 8
All the weekend action from Championship One and Championship Two:
Ards 5 Lisburn Distillery 2
Ards flew out of the blocks and scored on four minutes when Arthur's shot home from an O’Neill pass. Five minutes later it was 2-0 when new signing Emmett Templeton headed in. Another new signing Jordan Baker kept his composure to place a lovely shot into the corner from ten yards out and a fourth duly arrived as Warwick scored a beauty from just outside the area.The visitors did not give up and when Brown failed to get distance on a punch Withers pulled one back.The second half saw Arthurs taken down in the box and when Cully slammed in the resulting penalty the game was as good as over. Distillery plugged away and caused Ards problems before Hughes slammed in the goal of the game with a great volley.
Ballyclare Comrades 1 Loughgall 1
Ballyclare Comrades and Loughgall opened their Championship 1 campaigns with a draw in a tight encounter at Dixon Park.The visitors started the better and deservedly took the lead in the 28th minute, when an incisive move ended with a ball across the box finding Jamie Rea, who fired in first time from 7 yards. Loughgall’s lead didn’t last long as four minutes later Comrades were back on level terms, with Chris Getty heading in from 6 yards from a corner. The rest of the game was an evenly balanced affair, but neither side could create a clear opportunity for the winner and the final result was a fair reflection of the balance of play.
Dergview 3 Larne 0
Dergview got their season off to the perfect start with a resounding victory over Larne at a blustery Darragh Park. First half goals by John Edgar and Nathan Cashel set the Tyrone men on their way before new signing Ryan Mayse crowned a splendid debut with a third 15 minutes from time. Edgar volleyed Dergview into a 12th minute lead from a Mayse cross before Cashel glided in from the left to curl home a 20-yard beauty nine minutes before the break. Mayse's clincher arrived after excellent work by Aaron Arkinson and Darren Higginbotham. Both teams finished with 10 men, Derg defender Dale Maxwell and Larne striker Ciaran Murray both receiving their marching orders for two cautions.
Annagh United 2 Armagh City 1
This debut season for newly promoted Annagh started a little nervously versus Derby rivals Armagh City. Ciaran Fox was the busier of the two keepers in the opening half with few chances of note for Annagh who just started to get hold in midfield as the half ended.
Annagh looked more determined in the second half but found themselves a goal down when skipper Richie Allen guided the ball into the net as he attempted to clear Shea McGerrigans cross. Armagh hit the bar midway through the half as Annagh looked sharp from set pieces. It took a fine 20 yard strike from Stephen Park to bring the sides level on 71 minutes and when Jamie Gardiner cut inside to the edge of the box right on the 90th minute Connolly could do nothing to keep out his pinpoint strike to give Annagh three points in their first Championship One fixture.
Lurgan Celtic 3 Donegal Celtic 3
A rash tackle from Steven Hutchinson gave DC a free kick which was turned in by Steven Curley to open the scoring but the Lurgan side equalised shortly after when Dale Malone’s well struck free saw Hutchinson make amends to place a header over the keeper.The half ended with the home side shading the play but immediately on the restart DC again went in front when the home defence were caught napping and Joe Todd scored. A good spell of DC pressure saw them take control but LC drew level again when Malone headed powerfully into the net from Josh Bartons corner.The home side took the lead after a handball in the box was punished by a penalty and Malone drove it past the DC keeper. Moments from full time Lurgan keeper Conor McCorry failed to get a good contact as a high ball came in and Dan Smith netted to leave the result all square in this entertaining battle between the Celts.
H&W Welders 3 Larne 0
This game would be best described as one of two halves, Institute enjoying the better of the early exchanges with the home side struggling to impose themselves on a very lively visiting side. With the game only eight minutes old Armstrong saw his effort disallowed by Referee Steven Taylor for offside, a very dubious decision. In the thirty-second minute McDermott got a great chance to open the scoring for Institute but headed wide with the Welders all at sea. On 70 minutes Gallagher in the Stute goal raced out off his goal line and brought down David Rainey inside the penalty area, the referee awarded a penalty which McLellan duly put away. Right from the restart a great ball in from the right saw Scott McMillan rise to head down to the feet of Scott Davidson who tapped in to make it two. With the welders now firmly in the driving seat we witnessed a goal of this or any other season, Michael McLellan got the ball some forty yards out, looked up, saw the advancing Gallagher and planted the ball over his head and into the back of the net.
Limavady United 3 Dollingstown 1
The first half was an evenly contested affair then just on half time a mix up in visitors defence from a corner kick which wasn't properly cleared and the lively
Cathair Friel nipped in to head Limavady in front. Limavady doubled their lead on 70 minutes from an Owens free kick and it was that man Friel who again headed home.
Dollingstown didn't let there heads drop and skipper Moffett headed home from a corner to set up an exciting final 15 minutes. Dollingstown went down to ten men when Glen Hand had to leave the pitch with a very bad nose injury and all three subs were already used at this stage and the hosts wrapped the game up on 85 minutes when Gareth Tommons slid the ball home from close range.
Queens University 1 Sport & Leisure Swifts 2
On twelve minutes Adam Robinson’s pass found James Lavery who lobbed the ball over the visiting keeper. The ball was going wide until midfielder Aaron Keenan caught up with it and fired home from a narrow angle. Sport & Leisure gradually came more into the game but there were few chances in a scrappy first half. The equaliser arrived when Stephen Tully’s long throw fell perfectly for Connor Glenholmes who lashed it home from 5 yards. Queen’s improved and Michael Allisons low cross found Lavery at the near post but his effort was saved by Magill’s legs. A draw looked like a fair outcome but in the final minutes James Daly’s whipped free kick from near the corner flag found the head of Padraig McCrory who powered home Sport & Leisure’s winner from close range.
Moyola Park 0 PSNI 1
Football returned to Mill Meadow with Moyola Park playing host to last years Championship 1 side PSNI. The games first clear cut chance fell to Moyola in the 36minute. A ball from the left found Dowie six yards out and his shot was parried by Harrison, and his follow up struck the upright. In the 63minute a counter attack found Dowie who squared for Gray who was bearing down on goal, but a last ditch block from the defender brought an end to the chance. PSNI’s Simon McGowan scored the winner. The ball fell to him 20 yards out and his strike took a slight deflection, enough to take it into the corner of Farniok's goal.
Banbridge Town 0 Glebe Rangers 1
Banbridge Town opened the new season with a home game against Glebe Rangers. The game was only four minutes old when a poor clearance out of defence was met by Glebe’s Dunlop who volleyed into the Town goal with keeper Croft given little chance. On 60 minutes Town were reduced to 10 men when Chris McGrath was harshly dealt with following a melee involving players from both sides. Keeper Croft kept his team in the game with a great double save to deny Glebe a second goal with 10 minutes to go. Ryan Watson brought on pacy young winger McCavitt with five minutes left and he almost made an immediate impact getting his head on the end of a Matty McCartan cross but it just crept wide of the post.