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Bell stars as Braidmen's try blitz blows away Dromore

RONNIE INGRAM JUNIOR LEAGUE, SECTION ONE

BALLYMENA V and Omagh II, are now the only undefeated teams in the Junior League after Ballymena IV suffered their first defeat of the season when they went down 20-15 to UUC II.

The fifths were too strong for Dromore III in Junior 6 as they won 57-19, but the home team kept the scoreline under control until the start of the second half when they lost Aaron Larrage through injury.

Worse was to come as they finished with only 13 players and Ballymena took advantage with four tries in the final 10 minutes.

The Braidmen had started badly when a loose pass was hacked through and Dromore flanker Andy Wilson dived on the ball for a converted try.

Ballymena finally got their act together and strong forward driving by David Allen, Norman McKernhan and Davy Laughlin – who have a combined age of 149 – brought play deep into opposition territory.

They proceeded to win a Dromore line out and McKernhan, in his first game for three years, drove over for Garret Bell to convert. After 25 minutes centre Bell crossed for his first try, which he also converted.

Shortly afterwards Dromore levelled with an excellent solo run from centre Andy Patton, who weaved past three defenders for a converted try.

Paul McBride then released Denver Suiters to go in at the corner to make the score 19-14 in Ballymena's favour.

A pass from centre Paddy James allowed Bell to touch down for another converted try to make it 26-14 at the interval.

In the second half Suiters rounded his opposite number to score out wide before Dromore centre Nathan Connery intercepted around halfway and raced in for their third try.

Towards the end the home team, after losing another player, started to tire and Ballymena added four more tries, three from Bell and the final one from Adam Swann, the former goaled three of them to take his afternoon's tally to 37 points.

"We were just starting to control the game when unfortunately they lost a player and from then on they had an impossible task against our superior numbers," said Ballymena manager Alan Reynolds.

"The scoreline was a bit flattering to us, but credit to Dromore for scoring a try against the odds.

"We're still unbeaten after six games and have a victory over our nearest rivals Portadown IV who head the table but have played two extra games."

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