Mallards climb to fourth
Donegal Celtic 0; Ballinamallard Utd 3
Ballinamallard's debut premiership season continues to go from strength to strength. A 3-0 victory away to Donegal Celtic makes it three wins out of three for the Mallards and lifts them above Crusaders to fourth in the table.
James McKenna retained his place in the centre of midfield with Conor O'Grady remaining on the bench, but manager Whitey Anderson replaced Steve Feeney in the starting line up with Ryan Campbell, and the striker justified his manager's faith, opening the scoring after 20 minutes.
On seventeen minutes Campbell almost opened the scoring with a shot that came off the frame of the goal but moments later he made no mistake, receiving the ball on the edge of the penalty area and turning the defender before finding the bottom corner of the net to notch his second goal in two games.
It was a fairly even opening to the game, with Alvin Rouse tipping Donegal Celtic's best effort around the post, but after the visitor's opener they looked the better side, and Campbell could have added to his early strike but was denied by the goal keeper.
Ballinamallard old boy Andy Little was among the travelling support, and an hour into the game they had another goal to celebrate with Andy Crawford finding the net for the first time in five matches. The hard working striker picked up the ball just inside the opposition's half and advanced towards goal unchallenged. With options available either side of him Crawford chose to go it alone and after a 35 yards run unleashed a goal bound shot from just inside the penalty area.
Despite Donegal Celtic hitting the post late on Ballinamallard kept yet another clean sheet, and substitute Liam Martin completed the victory with his first league goal for the club in the dying moments of the game. The 19 year old flicked the ball over the goal keeper to secure Ballinamallard's third successive league win.
The Mallard's next match is on Friday night against a Glenavon side who threw away a two goal lead against Linfield today to lose 3-2. If the Fermanagh side can continue their winning streak at Ferney Park and claim another three points, the pre-season relegation favourites would find themselves at least third in the Premier League table.
Ballinamallard team: Rouse, McConkey, Keohane, Carters, Stafford, Kee, Curran, Campbell, Crawford, McCartney, McKenna. Subs: McGrath, O'Grady, Martin, Feeney, Hill
This article appeared in Impartial Reporter 22 Sep 12