Scott Davidson (51)
Luckas Gwiazda (90 3)


Scott Davidson opened the scoring for the Welders (Picture: Declan Roughan/


Two second half goals helped HW Welders defeat Ballyclare Comrades at Dixon Park.

The early stages of the match were rather subdued, with both sides probing, but unable to create any chances.

The first opportunity came in the 21st minute and it was a golden one for the visitors. A dangerous ball was played in low across the six yard box, where Ryan Deans arrived with the seemingly simple task of tapping into the empty net, but somehow he managed to side foot the ball into the arms of 'keeper Paddy Flood.

Welders had the next notable attempt on goal in the 35th minute. A good cross in from Scott Davidson found the head of Ross Arthurs eight yards from goal, but his effort was kept out by Flood who tipped the ball over the bar.

Comrades had shown some neat build up play, but with little end result, meaning Ryan Brown in the visitors' goal was untested.

The home side did step it up a little towards the end of the half. In the 39th minute, Gary Donnelly made space for a shot from just inside the box, but his effort was blocked by a defender. Then, a minute later, Joe McWilliams had a shot from the edge of the area, which flew a couple of yards wide of the target.

Comrades came out fast at the start of the second half and inside the first minute Jamie Willighan got into a great position in the box before firing in a shot from eight yards, which Brown did well to parry out. The loose ball found its way to Eoin Kane, who made space for an effort from ten yards, which he couldn't get on target.

It wasn't long however, before Welders threatened again. In the 50th minute a cross to the far post was taken down well by Davidson, but Paddy Flood was quick to react to block his effort from inside the six yard box.

A minute later the visitors opened the scoring. A ball played through over the Comrades defence set Davidson clear and he lobbed the ball over the advancing 'keeper and into the net from the edge of the box.

Following this, the game fell into a spell with not a lot happening around the box. The home side certainly didn't create much to get them back on level terms until late in the game. On 80 minutes a Joe McWilliams corner was met by an Adam Wright header from five yards, but the ball was bundled off the line by a defender. Then, two minutes later, Donnelly fired a good effort in from 12 yards from the right side of the box, but the ball took a deflection off a defender's leg and went wide of the far post.

Three minutes into injury-time any doubts as to the destination of the points were put to bed, when an under-hit back-pass from Jason Johnston let Luckas Gwiazda in and he made no mistake, firing the ball wide of Flood from nine yards.

Ballyclare Comrades: Flood, Woods, Wright, McWilliams, Kane, Gray, Johnston, Willighan, Robinson, Brown, Donnelly subs Crane (not used), McIlveen (not used), Trussell (replaced McWilliams 86), Tully (replaced Robinson 65), Kirk (not used)

HW Welders: Brown, McMillan, Armstrong, Harris, Spence, Dornan, Davidson, Morrow, Graham, Arthurs, Deans subs Gwiazda (replaced Arthurs 71), O'Mahony (replaced McMillan 46), McIlmail (not used), Rainey (not used), Whittle (not used)

Referee: Chris Morrison