BANBRIDGE Rangers warmed up for their Alan Wilson Cup Final on Friday night with a comfortable 4-0 win over Lurgan Town Boys at Cheney Park.
The league win was an excellent response following back to back draws and a relatively poor performance the previous week against Seagoe.
The game started brightly with a youthful Lurgan side chasing everything down and putting the makeshift back four of Gregg, Porter, Cousins and Frazer under pressure with direct running and closing down.
Banbridge Rangers striker Gareth Fulton saw two good chances to open the scoring go a miss early on with the keeper closing the angles. Jason Gourley and Neil Clydesdale had efforts on target as Rangers increased the pressure as the half carried on several players showing some nervous touches when in search of the opening goal.
With five minutes to the interval there was a sigh of relief when Neil Clydesdale pounced on a loose ball and fired the ball low past the keeper to give Banbridge Rangers a 1-0 lead. After the goal Rangers had two good opportunities to go further in front and went into the half brimming with confidence.
Gareth Fulton started the half looking as sharp as ever and was causing havoc for the Lurgan defence running the line and creating chance after chance. Fulton wasn’t long in getting on the score sheet with a confident finish less than ten minutes into the half to double Rangers advantage.
Fulton continued to be a menace and opened up a good chance for Gourley who saw his shot go over the bar. Gourley then had another chance saved by the keeper when Clydesdale slipped him in with the keeper reading the direction of the shot.
Gareth Fulton scored his second of the game with a sublime goal with a superb turn before shifting the ball onto his other foot and dispatching into the far top corner with the Lurgan keeper routed to the spot.
With 25 minutes remaining Chris Chambers made his first reappearance after six weeks out with injury coming on for Willie Frazer who had landed awkwardly on his back.
Scott Ward added his name to the score sheet to put the game out of sight with Banbridge Rangers taking their foot of the pedal going into the latter stages with Bradley Hughes and Stephen Copes coming on for Loney and Gourley.
The game fizzled out without drama which would suit Geordie McCallister who now has a full roster of players to pick from for Friday’s final against Camlough Rovers with kick off at Holm Park in Armagh at 7.30pm.