Leroy Millar bagged Ballymena's third goal (©INPHO/Brian Little)
Tuesday, 06 March 2018
Ballymena United gained a modicum of revenge for the recent League Cup final defeat with victory over Dungannon Swifts at Stangmore Park to aid their push for a top six finish.
The Sky Blues moved in front on 13 minutes through Johnny McMurray's low finish past Andy Coleman after he ran on to control a Tony Kane through ball.
But Dungannon levelled almost straightaway courtesy of Daniel Hughes' lob over Ross Glendinning for what was his first goal for his new club.
Ballymena regained the advantage on 25 minutes. Douglas Wilson conceded a free-kick on the edge of the box for a foul on Conor McCloskey and, from the set piece, Kane curved the ball beyond Coleman's reach into the net.
David Jeffrey's side stengthened their hold on the game on 55 minutes after another Kane delivery was met by Leroy Millar who duly directed a header past Coleman.
Back came the Swifts on the hour with Hughes' second of the evening after Seanan Clucas knocked a Ryan Harpur free-kick to the backpost back across the goal.
However, moments later, Dungannon were reduced to ten men when Paul McElroy was dismissed by referee Tony Clarke following an incident with Ballymena's Andrew Burns.
Dungannon Swifts: Coleman, Wilson, Armstrong, Mayse, McElroy, Harpur, O'Rourke, Patton, Lowe, Hughes, Hutchinson subs Addis (not used), Fitzpatrick (not used), Teggart (replaced Wilson 80), Clucas (replaced Hutchinson 41), Burke (replaced Mayse 71)
Ballymena United: Glendinning, Kane, Owens, Friel, McCloskey, Burns, Ervin, McCullough, Millar, McMurray, Quigley subs Faulkner (not used), Weir (not used), Shevlin (replaced McMurray 71), McCaffrey (not used), McKinney (replaced McCloskey 90)
Referee: Tony Clarke