NINE-man Rathfriland overcame stubborn resistance from LIsburn Rangers in a hotly contested encounter at Iveagh Park.
Adair’s men started well but went one down after 15 minutes against the run of play when a ball in from the right was sweetly volleyed past keeper Wilton from the edge of the box.
The equaliser came in the 26th minute when Ally Wilson chased down a seemingly hopeless situation, turned the defender inside out and was eventually fouled from behind. Wilson got to his feet and smashed home the equaliser from the penalty spot in characteristic fashion.
The locals looked to have handed the initiative to the visitors when an uncharacteristic two footed lunge in midfield from Ryan ‘Pixie’ Moffatt left the referee no choice but to send him for an early shower.
Before half time a blistering Ryan Evans’ run created confusion in the visitor’s defence but his goal bound effort was tipped over the bar by the hand of a Lisburn defender meaning he too got his marching orders. However Ally Wilson’s spot kick was blocked by the legs of the keeper.
Just before the break Ally Beck ran onto a brilliant through ball from Scott Ward to fire Rathfriland in front with a sublime finish.
Five minutes into the second period Nathan Baird made a run down the right and swung a great cross into the box for Ally Wilson to head home.
At 3–1 up Rathfriland seemed in total control of the game until, on the hour mark, a rash challenge from the already booked Kevin Henry saw him join the queue for the showers with a straight red card.
Even with nine men a gutsy home team remained in control, created further chances for Ryan Evans and substitute Ian Weir and held on comfortably to claim all three points in what was an eventful game.