AN inspirational second half from much travelled ex-Coleraine and Ballymena Utd striker Davy Patton, in which he scored two fine goals, turned this game in Tobermore’s favour .
They had found themselves 1-0 behind at the interval against a youthful and enthusiastic Banbridge Town side wh0 despite this defeat showed admirable qualities and no lack of skill at times.
Indeed it was Town who started this game like a whirlwind and Conor Downey brought a great full length diving save from Foster in the fourth minute when the classy Chris Kingsberry set him up with some great vision.
A great surging run from the latter saw him find the inrushing Chris McGrath in space but the young midfielder shot over when he could have done better.
Ryan Cree fired straight at Foster soon after as eager Town drove forward at every opportunity.
Millar had the visitors first effort but ‘keeper Kevin Maguire held his 30 yard drive.
Conor Downey was unlucky not to put Town ahead after 26 minutes when he watched his scorcher go inches past the target with Foster beaten.
At the other end McComb raced through and wasn’t far off target with a similar effort. Tobermore almost took the lead in the 34th minute through Kelly but Michael Ferguson was on hand to clear off his goal-line with ‘keeper Maguire stranded.
Town’s attacking full-back Simon Robb fired straight at Foster from 25 yards minutes later while a Gardiner/Millar combined free-kick almost paid dividends for the visitors.
A flicked header from Neill almost gave Tobermore the lead on 43 minutes and one minute later Patton should have scored with a free header that sailed the wrong side off the post.
However it was Banbridge who took the lead in the dying embers of the half when Mattie McCartan blasted a well worked 30 yard free kick in off a post with Foster helpless. Determined Tobermore (who had a great victory at Limavady last Saturday) applied all the early second half pressure and Maguire made a fine blocking save in the 49th minute.
The pressure finally paid off in the 55th minute when the wily Patton squeezed the ball home from an acute angle after a goalmouth scramble to level matters at 1-1.
Back came the stunned homesters and the impressive Chris Kingsberry struck a post as they pushed forward. The same player struck a fierce drive just wide after 59 mins.
Not to be undone Lamont rattled Town’s crossbar with a piledriver minutes later.
As play swung from end to end Maguire held a Gardiner effort for the visitors. It was on 68 minutes that Tobermore’s hero Patton gave them a lead they would not relinguish when he pounced on a loose ball in Town’s box and fired into the corner of the net to put his side 2-1 ahead.
To their credit Town poured forward in search of the equaliser but were caught out in the 80th minute when Dean Stewart volleyed a right foot drive into the net to secure the points after he had latched on to a half clearance from the tiring home rearguard in which Barry Nelson and James Wilson had starred all afternoon.
3-1 was too big a mountain for the home side to climb and they could not deprive To bermore of three well deserved points. However they can look back and take a lot of positives from their display.
Next Saturday (August 20th) Town travel to play Limavady Utd., Kick-off 3 p.m.
Banbridge Town: Kieran Maguire, Michael Ferguson, Simon Robb, James Wilson, Barry Nelson, Chris McGrath, Stephen Jones, Matthew McCartan, Ryan Cree, Chris Kingsberry, Conor Downey Subs: Neil Watson (for McBurney 69mins), Jamie Edgar, Aaron Gallagher (for Jones 65mins), Sean McKay, Adam McBurney (for Cree 35mins)
Tobermore United: Sammy Foster, Timmy McComb, Stuart Millar, Gary Donaldson, John Neill, Dean Stewart, Barry Kelly, Danny Gardiner, Neil Lamont, David Patton, Kris Magill Subs: Sean Heneghan(for Lamont 90 mins), Stuart Glasgow, Gary Maguire(for Gardiner 90 mins), Ciaran McKenna, Hugo Batista
Referee: Simon Creaney, Newtownards.