Banbridge men’s 1XI continued their unbeaten run in the GOC Estate Agents Premier League on Saturday with a 5-0 away win over Inst.
The Bann men welcomed back Eugene Magee for his first game back after a knee injury and Drew Carlisle made a swift comeback after a hamstring niggle but the Bann men were still without the services of Bruce McCandless and Owen Magee.
Bann had a great start to the game winning a penalty corner after only 10 seconds played which Stephen Dowds dispatched into the top left.
The second came from Jonny McKee in the form of a tap in after a counter attack from the Bann side.
At this point Banbridge seemed to be in control of the game creating chance after chance. Dane Ward and Eugene Magee flashing efforts just wide.
Inst did not want to lay down and they won a PC midway through the half which Gareth Lennox dealt with easily.
Lennox remained solid for a few more attempts from Instonians following some good counter attack play from them.
Both teams were locked in a scrappy fight to the end of the half, Bann being dealt a blow with one of their front men, Dane Ward, suffering from an apparent hamstring injury and forced to sit out of the rest of the game.
The teams went into half time at 2-0 Banbridge.
The second half started well for the Havelock side as they piled on the pressure in search of the third goal.
They seemed confident and in control passing the ball sharp and evading the Inst players.
The third goal finally came from Eugene Magee after robbing the ball in the middle of the pitch and putting it past the keeper with a hard reverse shot.
Bann continued to impress with Aaron Reid putting in the hard yards up front, linking well with Gilmore, Wright and Dowds. Scott Forbes also found himself in the circle from left back and was unlucky not to see his deflection go into the net after a good disguise pass from Matthew Bell.
Bell then put one on the scoresheet himself with a hard dragflick past the Inst keeper making the score 4-0 Bann.
Inst retaliated late into the second half with constant pressure on the Bann defense, on one such occasion they won a PC which, to Bann’s relief, was flicked wide past the post.
Stephen Dowds was the final member on the scoresheet after a great breakaway from Fraser Mills. Dowds still had some work to do after the pass from Mills and used his pace to get beyond the Inst defenders and slot home a reverse stick shot.
The score finished 5-0 Banbridge.
The next game for the Bann men is next Saturday in a clash with old rivals Lisnagarvey in the Irish Hockey League. Undoubtedly this will be a tight game. The match will be played at Havelock at 5pm.