Dunbarton A 99 (6pts)
Ulster Transport A 64 (1pt)
With nearest challengers Belmont racking up a very surprising 7 points away to Ballymena last Tuesday night, the Dunbarton seniors knew that they had to secure as many points as possible on Saturday.
For most of the game, a maximum point haul looked on the cards, but there was a sting in the tail. DJ Wilson’s rink who had won their previous 14 games in a row led by three going into their last end, only for the away skip to produce a magnificent final delivery and turn the jack for four shots. This lost point could prove absolutely crucial. On the other three rinks however there was much more to celebrate. Andy Hughes and his excellent rink thumped their rivals by 20 shots while Marty Trainor’s four eased to a fine 12 shot success. Last but not least came Myles Greenfield’s foursome who battled extremely well to win by four shots in a hard fought contest. Rink 1 D Copeland, C Mulholland, M Merritt, M Trainor up 28-16 This home rink got off to a terrible start conceding seven shots over the first two ends. However once they got on the scoreboard there was only ever going to be one winner. Scores of 1,5,1,1,3,1 turned a 0-7 deficit into a 12-7 lead. Scores of 4,2,2,1 over the next four ends sealed an impressive 12 shot victory.
Rink 2 M Higgins, T Bell, C McCartan, A Hughes up 32-11 The early exchanges on this rink were tight as the scores were locked at 3-3 after the first quarter. By the midpoint, Andy’s men had opened up a narrow 2 shot advantage but over the second half of the game, the locals dominated. Scores of 6 on end 17, 5 on end 19 and 4 on end 20 helped wrap up a 20 shot success.
Rink 3 C Trainor, J Kelly, G McElroy, M Greenfield up 17-13 Skip Myles and his rink led from the off and scores of 1,2,2,1,2 opened up a 10-2 lead after nine ends. To their credit, the Ulster Transport quartet fought back. With every league point so crucial, Myles’ men fought like Trojans over the final four ends, for a well earned four shot victory.
Rink 4 R McElroy, J Moffett, P Convery, DJ Wilson down 22-23 Over the early stages of this game there was only one rink in it as DJ’s men started brightly opening up a 7-0 lead. By the midpoint this lead had been narrowed to three shots, 10-7 but was extended to six at the three quarters mark. Then the drama began. The loss of 1,5,2 suddenly saw the hosts trail for the first time, 17-19 with three to play. Back came the locals to score a four and a single to lead by three with one end remaining.
However, with Dunbarton lying first and third shot, the visiting skip produced a tremendous final bowl to turn the jack for a count of four and DJ’s shell-shocked rink had lost by the narrowest possible margin. How crucial this point could be, only time will tell.