They’re gr-eight!

BANBRIDGE traveled to Stormont to play their fourth league game of the season.

Confidence was high within the camp after reaching the semi finals of the Irish Senior Cup.

On the other hand, Civil Service were looking to bounce back after successive 7-0 defeats. The Lurgan Road men were without several players for the game; Drew Carlisle (work commitments), Ross Beattie (work), Ben Cosgrove (hamstring) and Bruce McCandless (international duty).

The match started at a lethargic pace with neither team really taking control of the ball. Banbridge then settled into their rhythm with slick passing around the back four and began to take control of possession Stephen Dowd’s first short corner was well saved by the Service keeper as Bann began to look threatening in front of goal.

Midway through the first half Banbridge struck, a ball played in by Colin Dowds from outside the ‘D’ was deflected into the net by a Service player into their own net. This opened the game up and Banbridge’s front six began to get a lot of space in the Service half.

It was soon 2-0, Stephen Dowds scoring his first of the game through a well executed short corner. Civil Service looked to play on the counter and through quick aerial ball, but these attacks were competently dealt with by the Bann defence. Banbridge went into half time leading 2 -0.

The second half saw Banbridge take control of possession once again, with some slick passing moves from Peter Brown and Hugh McShane. Bann continued to penetrate the opponents circle and after Stevie’s corner was illegally stopped on the line, a stroke was awarded. This was expertly dispatched by Stevie for his second of the day.

Banbridge began to exploit the space in behind the Service defence, Hugh McShane picking out Stevie who neatly deflected the ball past the keeper to make it 4-0.

Bann were rampant and could sense a big win on the cards, Dane Ward made it five with a diving reverse into the bottom corner after the keep saved his initial shot.

Josh Moffatt made it six after being denied at the first attempt, to slot home between the keeper’s legs.

Civil Service began to threaten on the break after Bann went to three at the back and got their reward after a crash ball into the circle deflected off Stephen Forbes’ stick high into the roof of the net.

However, the Bann men were not done with the scoring and Colin Dowds made it 7-1 after some sensational skills from Peter Brown.

Stephen Dowds completed the scoring with another drag flick for his fourth of the day. Banbridge now face Lisnagarvey in a crunch match next Saturday at 4:30pm.