Ballymena B had 2 league matches over the past week and they were in fine form, claiming a maximum 14 points from the two fixtures.
The first took place at home to Knock last Tuesday night and then away at Gallaher last Saturday.
The victories ensured that the Ballymena men remained at the summit of NIPGL Division 3.
Ballymena B 102, Knock 60: Alan McAuley, John McFall, Tommy Hill and Roy Torrington were never in any trouble in their game against D McCluskey. The Braid men were in devastating form and 3 counts of 4 shots and a count of 5 shots on the 10th end saw them establish a 16 shot lead at the half way stage of the game. The home rink continued to dominate the game and although the scoring was lower the Ballymena rink won 8 of the remaining ends 10 ends to claim an excellent 33-9 victory.
There was a strange game as Alan Smyth, Arnold Kenny, Nigel McFadden and John Coulter took on T Wilson. The Ballymena men were in great form as they won the first 8 ends to open up a 13 shot lead. The game changed on the next end when the visitors scored a single and from then on they changed the length of the jack. This appeared to unsettle Coulter’s men and with only 2 ends remaining the visitors had fought back to level the game with the scoreboard reading 15-15. The Braid men dug deep and scored 2 shots on the penultimate end and this proved enough for victory as the visitors could only pick up a single shot on the final end to leave the final score 17-16,
Leslie Barr, Joe McKeown, Geoff Padgett and Chris Wilson had a real fight on their hands against C Custly. Scores were level at 5-5 after 4 ends but the Ballymena men appeared to have the measure of their opponents as they won 5 of the next 7 ends to open up a 5 shot advantage. The visitors had other ideas and they won the next 5 ends to lead by 13 shots to 12. Wilson’s rink had obviously kept something in reserve and 2 counts of 5 shots over the closing ends gave the Ballymena men a slightly flattering 23-16 victory.
Billy McCandless, Stuart McCarthy, Danny McCullough and Ivan Lynn took on S Curran and the game mirrored that on rink 2 and with only 7 ends played the Ballymena men looked to be well on their way to victory as they lead by 15 shots. The next 10 ends were much closer and so with only 4 ends remaining the Braid men still held a healthy 14 shot advantage and while a Ballymena win was never really in doubt the visitors finished strongly to close the gap to only 4 shots with the final score 22-18.
Ballymena B 96, Gallaher 47: Alan McAuley, John McFall, Tommy Hill and Roy Torrington were in fine form against W Spratt and with 6 ends played the visitors held a 9-2 lead. Two counts of 4 shots and three 2’s saw the Braid men extend their advantage to 18 shots with two thirds of the game completed and the Ballymena men continued to dominate the game right up until the end and claim an excellent 35-11 victory.
On rink 3 Leslie Barr, Joe McKeown, Geoff Padgett and Chris Wilson scored a single against R Fleming on the first end however it would be another 9 ends until they scored against and during this time the Gallaher rink scored 12 shots to lead by 11. The remainder of the game was a completely different story as the Ballymena men took charge. Six ends later the visitors levelled the score at 12-12 and they continued to dominate the remainder of the match when they outscored the home rink by 11 shots to 2 and claim a fine 23-14 victory.
They game between Billy McCandless, Stuart McCarthy, Danny McCullough and Ivan Lynn and the Gallaher rink skipped by D Doherty turned out to be a low scoring affair with only a total of 30 shots scored over the regulation 21 ends. The home rink actually won 11 of the ends scoring 9 singles and two 2’s. On the other hand the Braid men won 10 ends scoring 7 singles, a 2 and two counts of 4 shots which turned out to be the main difference between the 2 rinks and this gave the visitors the victory by 17 shots to 13.
Alan Smyth, Arnold Kenny, Nigel McFadden and John Coulter had a strange game against S Greenlees on rink 5. The Braid men made the perfect start when they picked up a count of 5 shots on the first end. Unfortunately the visitors were unable to build on this good start and over the next 10 ends the Ballymena men could only score 3 more singles while the Gallaher rink picked up a total of 12 shots to open up a 4 shot advantage. The remainder of the game however belonged entirely to Coulters men as they scored 13 unanswered shots and claim victory by 21 shots to 12.