Thursday, 9 November 2017

TOP FOUR CHAMPS! thumbnailAhoghill Thistle celebrate winning the Top Four Cup final against Harryville Homers at Ballymena Showgrounds on Friday night. GB4528D

TWO second half goals from Randal Reid and substitute Paul McIntyre proved the difference as Thistle won the Top Four for the third season out of four.
Harryville Homers looking to avenge last year's final defeat to Thistle went on the offensive from the first whistle with a Ricky Nicholl free kick causing havoc and the Thistle keeper Sean Ward had to be at his best to save from Darren Campbell.
After the initial early pressure the game become very scrappy, with Thistle looking content to play on the break and on two occasions Ryan Sands almost got in behind the Homers defence but Homers got back to thwart the danger.
Andrew Simms stung the palms of Ward from a narrow angle on 25 minutes as Homers again looked the most likely to open the scoring.
Thistle's first real chance of the game came 12 minutes before the break when a brilliant cross field ball from Matt Boyd set Ryan Sands free down the left and he crossed to the back post for Jamie Willighan he beat his man, but his shot was deflected narrowly wide.
This chance spurred Thistle on as they were the team now on the front foot but they failed to force a save from Lee McGavock in the Homers goal as the half finished in a stalemate.
Thistle started the first half in the ascendency and forced two early corners when Sands and Reid both had shots deflected wide.
*Full report and pictures in this week's Ballymena Guardian.


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