Saturday, 05 January 2019
Banbridge Town emerged victorious over Lurgan Celtic, winning a closely fought contest 2-1 at Knockramer Park.
The visitors started the brighter of the sides and might have taken an early lead following a defensive mix up between Celtic keeper Ciaran Fox and defender John Cochrane.
Another chance followed soon after when a free-kick fizzed across the face of goal but no-one managed to get the touch that would have surely directed it into the net.
But Celtic created the best chance of the game so far after half-an-hour when a right wing move saw a cutback find Gerard Rooney in front of goal, but he will be disappointed he could only send the ball over the crossbar.
The deadlock was finally broken on 68 minutes when Banbridge substitute Neil Clydesdale beat the offside trap to direct the ball from a free-kick past Fox.
And, moments later, it was 2-0 when another substitute, Christopher McGrath latched onto a long ball which was not dealt with by the home defence, and he slotted it home for what appeared to be all three points.
Celtic pulled a goal back with a couple of minutes remaining through Marcus Murphy but despite pressing in the closing moments the Hoops failed to find the equaliser.
Lurgan Celtic: Fox, Henderson, A. Rogers, Cochrane, Lindsay, O'Reilly, McCann, Rooney, Crawford, Toland, Farren subs Canavan (not used), Toman (replaced Toland 85), N. Lavery (replaced Farren 76), Murphy (replaced Crawford 85)
Banbridge Town: McErlean, Wilson, Devlin, Acheson, Thompson, Anderson, Allison, McCreanor, D. McGrath, McCavitt, Moffatt subs Clarke (replaced Allison 76), Gould (not used), Clydesdale (replaced McCavitt 65), C. McGrath (replaced Moffatt 65), McGuinness (not used)
Referee: Stephen Anderson