After an impressive win against rivals Banbridge Rangers last week, Town AFC were brought down a peg or two by basement club Ballymacash Rangers, who themselves have put together a good run since the turn of the year and won this one 4-2.
Town started the opening period slack and allowed their opponents to dominate in all areas of the field.
Despite starting poorly, the first chance fell to the hosts with Orr cracking a fierce shot against the bar and the away side cleared comfortably.
The visitors’ early pressure then paid off after five minutes when an attacker had a free header in the box from a corner, dispatching it into the top corner.
The visitors then cranked up the pressure again on their young hosts by penning them into their own half.
Ten minutes in, Ballymacash went two up after a good break down the right and a great ball in, from which Town defender Johnston was desperately unlucky to see the ball canon in off his outstretched leg as he tried to clear.
After 35 minutes, Town struck the woodwork again, this time through Hayes’ shot after some great footwork on the edge of the area left three defenders in his wake.
In the second half, Town changed their system which suited them better on the tight pitch. However, it was the away team who struck first in the second half after a long diagonal ball beat the AFC defence and saw the visitors’ winger have his shot saved only for an on-rushing striker to slot into the roof of the net.
This inspired Town, who pulled one back when a great ball in from the right found Hayes whose great leap was matched by the header, giving the visitors’ keeper no chance.
On 70 minutes, Town got a second after great work down the left by Hayes and substitute McCavitt, who was excellent when introduced at half time, saw another sub Burns slot into an empty net.
With Town giving everything and pressing for a leveller, they were hit with a sucker punch with five minutes to go when a quick counter by the visitors found an attacker unmarked 12 yards out and he slotted home to kill the game off.
Man of the match for Town AFC went to Kelly who was combative in the middle of the park showing real steel in the physical midfield battle all game.
TOWN AFC: McConville, Orr, Johntson, Martin, Downey, Close Toner, Kelly, Heaney, Hayes, Donnelly.Subs: McCavitt, Burns, Monaghan, Houston, Williamson.