Ahoghill Thistle 2 Carniny Rangers 1: This game was a preview to the upcoming Top Four Final and also saw two sides with 100% league records do battle and it was Thistle who continued their excellent start to claim all thre points.
Thistle came out of the traps quickest and took the lead in the opening minute when David Tennant played the ball into Matt Boyd he turned his marker and volleyed the ball past James Gracey in the Carniny goal.
The second half saw Thistle again take control from the beginning with Matt Boyd and Alan Moore seeing their shots go narrowly wide. Thistle got the second goal their play merited on 65 minutes when Alan Moore switched the ball to Matt Boyd and he cushioned a header into the path of David Tennant who swept the ball home from 15 yards out. Carniny enjoyed a period of sustained pressure but despite being on top they never created any clear cut chances. With 10 minutes to go Carniny got a lifeline when they were awarded a penalty kick after Rico Wylie was fouled. Dean Dunlop stepped up and fired home from the spot to set up a tense finish for Thistle.
Carniny tried hard to get an equaliser in the final stages but Thistle defended well with Davy Calderwood and Gareth Dickey outstanding as Thistle held out for what could prove to be a massive three points come May.
Harryville Homers 5 Ballykeel 1: As the match passed the half hour mark Homers broke the deadlock. Darren Campbell found himself free at the back post to loop his header over keeper Stephen Watson in goal for Ballykeel, and into the net, converting Ricky Nicholl’s pinpoint cross.
Ballykeel drew level after the break when former Homers player, Barry McDowell, was on hand to score from close range. This woke the Champions from their slumber as they pressed to take the lead again and Ballykeel’s equality was short lived as Ricky Forsythe, popped up in the box to score yet another important goal for his side. The big defender was on hand to slot home after Ryan Stewart’s shot cannoned back off the post into his path.
The visitors went further behind when hero turned villain, Barry McDowell, could only turn the ball into his own net following a powerful, low cross from Alan Rainey. With the resolve finally broken in Ballykeel, The Harryville side added two more to their tally as Paul McNeill rounded the keeper before sliding his left foot shot into the unguarded net.
David McWhirter scored the fifth and final goal of the game as he drifted in at the back post to put his controlled volley past Stephen Watson and add some more gloss to the score line.
Newpark Olympic 3 Braid United 1: Newpark brightly in the opening exchanges with Willie Davidson coming close only for James Gaston to save, Dee Killen also came close after neat play by Jamie Nutter and Stephen Brown set him up.
The home side were dominant but it took them until three minutes before the break to find a way past James Gaston in the Braid goal.
Willie Davidson split the Braid defence for the Jamie Nutter to latch onto the ball and fire home.
Newpark began the second half as they ended the first doubling their lead soon after the restart. Jamie Nutter was the scorer again this time scoring after being played in by Andy Smith. Braid got a goal back 10 minutes later and gave themselves a chance in the game when Darren Rodgers scored after a long ball from James Gaston was flicked on by Richard McClean. This goal didn’t rock Newpark as they continued to go on the attack with Willie Davidson and Dee Killen coming close as they looked to open up their two goal lead once again.
It was Newpark who got the next goal and put the game beyond Braid when a cross from Dee Killen was palmed out by James Gaston but the ball ricocheted back off Stephen Brown and found the corner of the net to seal the three points for Newpark and keep them on top of the Division.
BSML Division Three
Randalstown 8 Templepatrick 0: The home side were dominant from the start and took only eight minutes to break the deadlock when Darren Quigley beat his marker with a great piece of skill before firing home. Soon after it was 2-0 when Andy Campbell found the net with a superb drive from 25 yards out. John Kitson then got in on the act as he made it 3-0 after 25 minutes with a great individual goal. Ten minutes before the break Darren Quigley split the visiting defence for John Kitson to race clear and score his second and make it 4-0.
Jordan Craig who had been at the heart of everything good the home side did in the first half made it 5-0 just before the interval when he rounded off a great team move.
There was no let up from Randalstown in the second half as Stephen Dripps was on hand to make it 6-0 after a Jordan Craig corner caused chaos in the Templepatrick defence. John Kitson then completed his hat trick as he made it 7-0. Darren Semple then completed the scoring when he headed home a Jordan Craig corner kick to make it 8-0 and round of a great team performance from Randalstown.
Co Antrim Post O’Kane Cup Quarter Final
All Saints OB 6 Cullybackey Olympic 1: It took Saints only five minutes to open the scoring when Philip Lynn drove the ball across the box and Stephen Sexton fired home at the near post. Gavin Burnside almost made it 2-0 minutes later but his curling effort came back off the bar. Olympic then had a spell were they took control but failed to threaten Brian Martin’s goal.
Saints doubled their lead on 25 minutes when Barry Hamill took a quick free kick to Gavin Burnside and his cross was headed home by Ciaran Lemon.
Gavin Burnside then hit the bar again with another curling effort before Justin Bell scored from close range to reduce Saints lead to one. Saints regained their two goal cushion before half time when Stephen Sexton slipped the ball under the Olympic keeper after being played in by Gavin Burnside.
Eight minutes into the second half Saints made it 4-1 when Barry Hamill played a short corner to Gavin Burnside who laid it back to Barry Hamill he took and touch and curled the ball into the top corner of the net. Saints were rampant now and made it 5-1 on the hour mark when a driving run from Aaron Keenan resulted in an Olympic defender firing into his own net.
In the dying minutes Saints rounded off the scoring when Gavin Burnside squared the ball to Barry Hamill to score his second from close range and seal Saints passage into the quarter final.