Bann Rangers U16s slip up ahead of key local derby

5 March 2014; A general view of a football. UEFA Under 21 Championship Qualifier, Republic of Ireland v Montenegro, Tallaght Stadium, Tallaght, Co. Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras O Midheach / SPORTSFILE
5 March 2014; A general view of a football. UEFA Under 21 Championship Qualifier, Republic of Ireland v Montenegro, Tallaght Stadium, Tallaght, Co. Dublin. Picture credit: Piaras O Midheach / SPORTSFILE

On Saturday an under par performance from top of the table Banbridge Rangers Under 16s saw them drop two valuable points with a 3-3 draw against a stubborn Lower Maze side at Scarva Park.

On three occasions Banbridge Rangers went behind but showed their fighting determination to get back into the game on each occasion. Lower Maze were first on the score sheet in the first five minutes when Rangers were slow at marking up at a corner and were punished when the ball was headed in.

The Gers drew level minutes later when a through ball was fumbled by the keeper into the path of David Barr whose shot was well saved but fell kindly to Bradley Harper who lifted the ball over the keeper and into the net.

Lower Maze got their second of the game when a long clearance fell kindly to their striker who raced away from his marker and was able to lob onrushing keeper Craig Robinson.

Minutes before half-time, Rangers again equalised when a perfect delivery from a Dean McIlvena free-kick was met by Russell Hilland who beat the offside trap and tapped in at the back post.

Rangers were dealt another blow when again Lower Maze took the lead with a quick break.

Midway through the second half, Rangers decided to make a pivotal change when Bradley Harper was replaced by Ryan Woods, who with his first touch scored Rangers’ third of the day. After a crossed was blocked from the right the ball fell perfectly for Ryan to hit first time with his left foot into the bottom corner.

Rangers now look forward to Saturday’s derby against Banbridge Town.