Ryan Campbell opened the scoring for the Mallards (Picture: Andrew Paton/PressEye.com)
Saturday, 29 December 2018
Ballinamallard United's rich vein of form continued with victory over Limavady United at The Showgrounds.
Scoreless at the break, the best chance of the first half fell to Limavady on 27 minutes when Oran McConnell's cross from the right was met perfectly on the volley by Ryan Doherty but John Connolly stretched out an arm to tip the ball over.
Ballinamallard were much the better side in the second half, duly moving in front on 55 minutes when Ryan Campbell swooped to slam the ball home from close range after Connor Brown failed to clear the danger.
United could have allowed their heads to drop, but to their credit they forced an early equaliser, albeit a scrappy one. From a corner the ball was hoisted high into the six yard box and, under pressure, Connolly dropped the ball which was forced over the line from three feet by Ryan Devine despite protests by the Mallards' players.
The visitors had penalty claims waved away when Campbell went down in the box and they continued to press, creating several chances the most impressive of which saw Brown produce a fine double save low to his right. From the corner, a long range effort skimmed the top of the crossbar.
For all the visitors' pressure, it was not until the 77th minute that they retook the lead with what proved to be the winner when Nathan Cashel scored with a close range header from a corner which Brown failed to reach.
Limavady United: Brown, O'Kane, Gareth McFadden, Boyle, Friars, Carlin, McCauley, Gary McFadden, McConnell, Doherty, Pomeroy subs Stewart (not used), Duffy (replaced Pomeroy 73), Devine (replaced Friars 46)
Ballinamallard United: Connolly, Taheny, Smyth, Clarke, Arkinson, McCann, McCartney, Cashel, Campbell, McEvoy, Henderson subs Britton (not used), McGlynn (replaced McEvoy 81), Warrington (not used), Kelly (replaced Cashel 90), Robb (not used)
Referee: Niall Gallagher