Town AFC make it two on the bounce after ending winless run

Town AFC have hit form with recent wins over Rathfriland and Newry City AFC. INBL1443-254pb
Town AFC have hit form with recent wins over Rathfriland and Newry City AFC. INBL1443-254pb

Two weeks ago, Banbridge Town AFC were still looking for their first win of the season.

How much rosier things look now after they followed up their fine display against Rathfriland in the Mid-Ulster Shield last week with another positive result, this time a 1-0 league victory over local rivals Newry City.

The AFC lads started the game with an unchanged line up and there was little to separate the two sides in the opening exchanges.

With both sides putting together decent attacking passages, both defences looked organised and determined to keep a clean sheet.

A few tackles started to fly in and after a great challenge to win the ball, team captain Stuart Jordan came out worse off when he was caught on the calf. The AFC midfielder tried to continue after some treatment but had to come off on 20 minutes being replaced by young Christopher Burns.

On 26 minutes, the very hard-working Andrew Houston won a corner for AFC but the header by Aaron Heaney was just wide.

AFC continued to put on the pressure but influential midfielder Jordan Hayes after some fine interchanges failed to connect cleanly with his shot on the Newry goal and Aaron Heaney should have done better with the follow-up.

Newry mounted a decent attack before the break when they cut through the AFC defence only for the Newry striker to hit his shot straight at Stephen Croft.

After half-time, Newry upped the tempo and looked dangerous coming down the left flank. On the hour-mark, they hit the crossbar with a header after a dangerous cross from the right.

However, AFC soon refound their rhythm and, after McCavitt flashed a great effort narrowly wide, Andrew Houston netted the opener. He was first to react when the Newry stopper parried an effort and fired in the rebound.

AFC kept up the pressure for the remainder of the game, only a heavy touch denying McCavitt a great chance before his corner was powered over the bar by defender Brian Johnston’s head.

AFC were sloppy in possession in the closing minutes but managed to hold on to claim their first league win.

Next week, Banbridge Town AFC will look to make it three wins on the bounce with another local derby but Rathfriland will be looking revenge in this league encounter.

BANBRIDGE TOWN AFC: Stephen Croft, Micheal Mallon, Brian Johnston, Dylan Martin, Darren Downey, Ryan Williamson, Jordan Hayes, Stuart Jordan, Aaron Heaney, Stephen McCavitt, Andrew Houston. Subs: Declan Loy (70), Christopher Burns (20), Mark Toner (80), Eoin Monaghan, Kallum Farrell.