Due to the second round of the Steel & Sons Cup taking place on Saturday, there was only one Premier Intermediate League (PIL) match last weekend so both The Championship and PIL will be covered in one roundup this week. Starting with The Championship:-
Limavady United 2 Lurgan Celtic 3
A Warner Mullan hat-trick was enough to secure three points on the road for Lurgan Celtic against Limavady. Mullan scored his first goal after 40 minutes and then the lead was doubled just a minute after half-time before Shane Jennings reduced Celtic’s lead. Mullan completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot and Andy Devlin completed the scoring with a late consolation for United.
Ballyclare Comrades 6 Institute 1
A bad week off the pitch for Institute, which seen the bad weather midweek flood their ground and cause excessive damage, got even worse on it as they fell to a heavy defeat to Ballyclare. Caoimhin Bonner actually gave Stute the lead early in the game, Paul Maguire had a chance to equalise from the penalty spot but Martin Gallagher saved his effort. Maguire did equalise for the Comrades after 27 minutes and but 30 minutes the game had turned on its head as Samuel McIlveen converted from the spot to give the Comrades the lead. In the second half, a goal from Thomas Robinson and a debut hat-trick from Stewart Nixon completed the rout and means the Comrades are now the only side in The Championship with maximum points after three games.
Newry City 3 Loughgall 1
Newry got their first points of the season on the board on Friday night at Newry Showgrounds and it was Newry who broke the deadlock from a Stephen Hughes penalty, two further goals from Mark Hughes put City in a comfortable position for securing the three points before Mark McConnell pulled a goal back for Loughgall after 77 minutes but there was to be no comeback.
Harland & Wolff Welders 0 Knockbreda 3
Knockbreda secured their first win of the season in a convincing victory away from home against the Welders. Breda took the lead after 30 minutes when Conor Doran committed a foul inside the box, the Welders player was dismissed and Ciaran Murray dispatched the penalty. It was 2-0 after 52 minutes when experienced Irish League striker Michael Halliday scored from close range and Jason Walls wrapped up the win with a low finish from a corner late in the game.
Larne 2 Dergview 2
Even their first point of the season was not enough to pull Larne off the bottom of the table but no doubt they will be relieved to have finally got something on the board. The match was goalless at half-time and Daniel Reynolds broke the deadlock for Larne after 54 minutes when he headed home from a Tarek Arafa cross. Dergview equalised shortly after when Ryan Campbell when and converted a penalty and six minutes from time Dergvew looked to have wrapped up the win when Robbie Godfrey capitalised on some poor defending to give them the lead but Reynolds equalised for Larne in the 88th minute. Reynolds had the ball in the net again in injury time but the offside flag cut the celebrations short.
PSNI 1 Portadown 1
Portadown dropped points for the first time this season on Saturday as both sides continued their unbeaten start to the season. Niall Henderson gave the Ports the lead after his spot kick was saved by keeper Jordan Williamson but he was first to the rebound and converted at the second time of asking. Portadown had chances to double their lead but couldn’t do so and a minute after half-time Christopher Watts drew the side’s level. PSNI had chances of their own in the second half but in the end, both sides had to make do with a share of the spoils.
Portstewart 1 Banbridge Town 3 (Premier Intermediate League)
Banbridge came out on top at Portstewart on Saturday but they had to come from behind to do it after the Seahawks opened the scoring. Neil Clydesdale equalised before half-time and after the break goals from Luke Russell and Ryan Moffat completed the comeback and secured the win.
This Saturday sees a return to normality as both The Championship and the PIL have full programmes so we will return to our two separate roundups next week.