BALLYMENA Seconds got their Junior League 2 campaign off to a winning start with a hard fought 23 runs success over Donacloney II at Eaton Park on Saturday.
Defending just 113 after a late order collapse, the home side bowled with great accuracy to dismiss their visitors for just 90 and pick up the four points.
Fifteen year-old seamers, Owen Dick and Johnny Browne, led the way with early wickets to help reduce Donacloney to 24 for three, and they were ably supported by 16-year-old, Sam Glass, and spinner Ethan Archer.
Archer recorded the best figures with three wickets for just 12 runs in seven overs, while Glass claimed three for 17 from eight and Dick finished with three for 23 off seven.
Ballymena’s fielding and catching was also top class as Donacloney fell from 53 for four to 71 for nine and an inevitable defeat.
Earlier in the day opener Matthew Dick top scored with 30 (one six and four fours) as Ballymena looked to set a competitive total.
That looked on the cards when, with 13 overs remaining, and sitting at 99 for four, Trevor McBurney (21) was out to a brilliant catch at cover.
His dismissal led to an alarming and worrying Ballymena batting collapse which saw the home side lose their last six wickets for the addition of just 14 runs to the total.
One of those wickets was Philip Harshaw who looked comfortable in defence and dangerous on the attack as he scored 27, an innings that included two boundaries.
In the end though, 113 proved more than enough thanks to a discipline show with the ball from Ballymena’s young attack.
Next week the Seconds travel to Belfast to face Academy II in Junior League 2.