NIFL Championship round-up, August 22
All the latest from Championship One and Two:
Dergview 1 Bangor 2
Dergview suffered back-to-back defeats by surrendering an interval lead in losing to Bangor at Darragh Park on Saturday. Ryan Mayse scored his second goal of the season to give Richard Clarke's team a slender advantage at the break but the Seasiders responded and ultimately secured maximum points, following second half strikes from veteran Colin Nixon and recent signing Stephen Curry. Defender Neil Coulter, in attempting to clear a Dominic Melly free kick, headed against centre-back partner Colin Robinson, and the ball fell perfectly to Nixon, who slammed first time past Boggs. Bangor now had their tails up and they quickly grabbed a second when, after Duwayne McManus was caught in possession, Curry was released down the channel to net what turned out to be the winner. Dergview responded with Mayse failing to get enough power on a shot to trouble Gibbons before Robinson and Arkinson combined to create an opening for John Edgar. However, the midfielder's effort was well saved.
H&W Welders 1 Armagh City 1
An explosive start to the game saw the visitors go a goal ahead after just two minutes. Sean Mallon saw his touch take the ball over the goal-line. Armagh were enjoying the better of things in the first half and indeed, it was ten minutes prior to the interval before the Welders started to create a few chances. After 30 minutes, Dougherty, in the home goal, was called upon to push a shot from Mallon round the post. It was still Armagh looking the more likely to add to the scoring at this stage. With five minutes to the interval, David Rainey equalised for the Welders. On the resumption, the majority of the play was contained in the middle of the park, with the Welders looking a little subdued and Armagh foiling the odd attacking ideas from them. With a few minutes left on the clock, Cahoon had a half-chance, only to see it go over the bar. Credit to the visitors who enjoyed more of the play, and the home side could feel a little lucky in obtaining a point.
Knockbreda 2 Ballyclare Comrades 2
Breda dominated the first half and played some slick football at times, but there was no end product, and although Comrades didn't threaten the home goal at all, they were happier going in all-square at half time. The second half turned out to be an unbelievable affair that no-one could have predicted. Still 0-0 after 60 minutes, young Hanna was sent off for his second yellow, but this didn't stop Breda dominating and Hughes crashed a shot against the post. More drama followed minutes later as Owens was sent off. The Comrades sensed this could be their day, with 25 minutes to go. Indeed, when they scored two goals within five minutes, the game looked done and dusted but Breda's three subs, Burns, Johnston and Halliday hadn't read the script. In the 90th minute, Halliday poked in Johnston’s cross and, two minutes later, headed in a long throw to leave Ballyclare gutted as the excellent referee McIlwrath blew for full time.
Lisburn Distillery 0 Larne 7
Given the positive performance by the Whites last time out, few would have expected Lisburn Distillery to completely capitulate on this occasion to the men from Inver Park. The early signs were ominous, as Larne dominated the opening passages of play and it was no surprise when they took the lead on 13 minutes through a well-taken strike from Scott Irvine. Eight minutes later and the lead was doubled when the home defence failed to clear from a whipped in free kick and the ball found its way into the net. With 43 minutes played, it was game over, as firstly, Niall Derry was red carded and Larne were given a penalty which Murray duly dispatched. The second half proved even worse for the hosts with goals from Maguire, another Murray penalty, a Darren Stuart tap-in and finally a third, and hat-trick goal, for Murray completed the proceedings. The Whites were also reduced to nine men, Gareth Ringland being red carded in stoppage time.
Ards 1 Lurgan Celtic 1
Unlike their previous displays, Ards were not fast out of the blocks on Saturday, as the lively and hard-working visitors broke up early attacks with some good challenges and no-nonsense defending. At the other end, a lightning attack saw the speedy Lavery cross for Haire, who headed over when he should have scored. Ards were being out-fought in most areas of the pitch although neither keeper was over-worked. The only two further chances of the half saw Hutchinson have an effort cleared off the line, while Ards' best effort saw Baker head over from a difficult angle. Ards began the second half more brightly and had a couple of good attacks ending with shots off target, and then in the 54th minute, the visitors scrapped for a ball in the Ards area, and finally a McCann back-heel trickled in off a post. Lavery could have put the game out of Ards' reach when he outpaced the home defence but was stopped by a good McAuley save. Ards were now applying more and more pressure as Lurgan lay deeper and deeper. The Ards subs McMillan and McKee were having an impact and they were rewarded with three minutes to go, when a McMillan free kick was met by Gage, who headed in the leveller.
Coagh United 2 Limavady United 5 (Played Friday)
Limavady United moved to the top of the league, for a short time at least, with a five-star performance at Hagan Park, with Cathair Friel notching a double for the third game in succession. It was Friel who broke the deadlock just before the interval when his stinging shot was dropped into the net by home keeper William Hassan. United doubled their lead in the 63rd minute. Lee Harkin was the architect, going on a great solo run before cutting the ball back to Conor Harkin, who smashed the ball into the net. On 69 minutes, Paul Owens was upended in the box, and the player/manager took the kick himself, only to see Hassan guess correctly to block his effort, but Owens darted in to steer the rebound into the net. Coagh never gave up, and were rewarded with nine minutes remaining, when substitute Stuart Barrow pulled one back. In injury time, Friel pulled a great save out of Hasson but again tapped in the rebound. Coagh pulled another goal back when Stuart Glasgow headed home and Blain Morrison completed the scoring, smashing home with the last action of the game.
Banbridge Town 3 Tobermore United 4
Banbridge Town welcomed unbeaten Tobermore United to Crystal Park on Saturday, hoping to get their first league win of the season. On 45 minutes, a Greene hand-ball just outside the area was punished by Trevor Parkhill, who placed the ball wide of the keeper into the unguarded net. It was 2-0 on 60 minutes, when a right wing cross was finished off, giving Croft no chance. On 70 minutes, Towns bad day got a lot worse. A Tobermore striker rounded keeper Croft, but Stuart Thompson slid in at the near post to prevent the goal, only to be shown a straight red for a hand-ball. Parkhill's penalty hit the post but he reacted quickest to score from the rebound.
With 20 minutes left, Town finally came to life. McCartan on the right wing crossed for Barr to pull one back. Three minutes later, it was 3-2 when Kingsberry got Town’s second, but with five minutes left, Greene’s desperate tackle saw a second penalty for Tobermore, which Parkhill converted for his hat-trick. Town weren't finished and on 90 minutes, Kingsberry got his second, rifling an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net.
Queens University 0 Glebe Rangers 3
Two minutes in, Queen’s James Lavery curled a shot towards the far top corner only to be denied by a fine tip over by Glebe keeper Chris Fullerton. On 12 minutes, it was the visitors who opened the scoring, when right back Sam Shaw played a long ball to the far post, where Ian Christie reacted quickest and stabbed the ball past Declan Brown from close range. In a quick breakaway, Aaron Wilkinson sent Christie clear on the left but the lively winger shot well wide. Queen’s had chances too, especially when a misplaced back pass went straight to Lavery, who shot weakly at Fullerton. Early in the second half, Glebe clinched the game with two quick goals. A cross from the right wing took a big deflection and Queen’s defender Robbie Budden, trying to clear, had the misfortune to head into his own goal. A minute later, it was game over when Wilkinson got away on the right, and his cross was perfect for Christie to head his second goal. Queen’s attacked for the remainder of the half, especially after Peter Kennoway got a straight red card, but could not break down a well-organised Glebe defence.