Unlucky Town U16s are sent packing in the mountains

Banbridge Town U16s keeper Conor Ward makes a top drawer save.
Banbridge Town U16s keeper Conor Ward makes a top drawer save.

Following last week’s 2-2 draw with Annagh United - when Jake Laffin came off the bench to score two goals and rescue a point for the locals - Town Juniors U16s the journey up the mountains to face Valley Rangers in the Mid-Ulster Youth League.

Early chances arrived but the Juniors were unable to convert to give themselves the lead. Valley played a smart game, playing the long ball on the short pitch but Jordan Walker and Ryan Jones dealt with all the pressure very well.

The wings were proving the outlets, with Jake Dennison and Jonny Rodgers full of running as they were backed up by full backs Mark Adams and Jake Dermott.

Valley had the best chance of the half as the ball fell fortuitously for the Valley striker, only for keeper Conor Ward to pull of a spectacular point blank save, tipping the ball over the bar.

The second half had the Juniors playing into the wind, and Valley began to pressure the visitors.

Sam McAllister and Ryan Sloan were not giving an inch away in the midfield, while the lively Sam Moore was proving a handful for the Valley defence.

The Juniors had the ball in the net when Liam Farrell volleyed the ball home, but the referee ruled it out for offiside.

Valley made the breakthrough when a ball hoofed forward bobbled on the woeful pitch and the Valley striker poked into the net. From this, they grew in confidence.

However, a defiant Juniors side was not in the mood to roll over over. Jake Laffin ran his marker ragged and played some fantastic balls into the box however the Juniors were unable to get the bit of luck to make the difference.

Valley doubled their lead 10 minutes from the end with a wind-assistede free-kick.

With the last kick of the ball, Valley got an undeserved third goal when a long ball forward caught out a Juniors side who were pressing for a goal of their own.

This week’s man of the match was Sam McAllister for a terrific performance fighting for every ball and driving his team forward.