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Barry Gray hails Warrenpoint's finish after 'peeved' half-time team talk

Warrenpoint Town 3-1 Carrick Rangers


Barry Gray

Barry Gray


Barry Gray

Barry Gray praised his Warrenpoint Town side for finishing with a flourish, winning their third game from the last five as a Ryan Swan brace helped them one their way to three points at home to managerless Carrick Rangers.

Alan O’Sullivan had put the Point in front early on before Caolan Loughran levelled from the penalty spot. But Swan fired the home side in front before the break before the Dubliner made it three with a close-range header in the second half.

“We’re delighted with the win. It was very comfortable for us. If I’m being honest, we were a wee bit peeved at half-time, because we went one up and then had two great opportunities within minutes of that and then found ourselves one each. But I thought it was decent team performance from us,” said Gray.

“Carrick were hungry and energetic in the first half and I think we managed it well. We probably created more opportunities today than we have in months. We didn’t take all of them, built it was a very good positive performance where it would have been very easy for players to switch off.”

They took the lead just short of the quarter hour mark when O’Sullivan cut out a poor

Sensing there could be an opportunity, the striker pressured Carrick defender Loughran pass before cutting inside Steven Gordon and curling an effort out of the reach of Carrick keeper Aaron Hogg and off the inside of the right-hand post.

Carrick equalised on 21 minutes after Colm Deasy fouled Lloyd Anderson right on the edge of the box as the forward was going away from goal. Referee Ben McMaster pointed to the spot and Loughran had the chance to redeem himself for that earlier error and he did just that, firing down the middle past Andy Coleman to make it 1-1.

But, four minutes before half-time, another misplaced pass by Loughran was intercepted, this time by Kealan Dillon. He drove forward before sliding the ball through to Swan on the right and the striker lashed it past Hogg to give the hosts the lead at half-time.

The third goal arrived midway through the second half when a quickly taken short corner from Dillon allowed Brandon Doyle to put in a deep cross from the left that was nodded back by Luke Gallagher and Swan was able to steer his header home from inside the six-yard box.

Interim Carrick boss Scott Irvine said it was hard to account for the errors that led to Warrenpoint’s two goals in the opening 45 minutes.

“I thought first half we had our game plan spot on. We looked like the team that was the more dangerous, but you just can’t legislate for individual mistakes. They’ve sniffed them out and punished us for them,” he said.

Warrenpoint Town: Coleman 7, Deasy 7, Ball 7, Wallace 7, Gallagher 8, McVeigh 7 (McCaffrey 83), Hutchinson 8, Dillon 8, Swan 8, O’Sullivan 7, Doyle 8

Subs not used: Sava, Carroll, Cowan, Mullen, Quinn, Forsythe

Carrick Rangers: Hogg 8, Gordon 7, Loughran 5, Mulholland 6 (McGimpsey 83), Glendinning 6, Anderson 7, Chapman 6, Smith 6 (Jenkins 74), Millar 6 (Forsythe 55), Gibson 6, McMullan 6

Subs not used: Connor Friel, Cherry, Wylie, McGimpsey, Cathair Friel

Referee: Ben McMaster 7

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