CHAMPIONSHIP 1: Comrades to the ‘four’ against Distillery

Ballyclare's Gary Brown on the attack against Lisburn Distillery. INLT 12-913-CON Photo: Presseye
Ballyclare's Gary Brown on the attack against Lisburn Distillery. INLT 12-913-CON Photo: Presseye

Four goals in the opening minutes of the second half breathed life into the Championship 1 basement battle between Ballyclare Comrades and Lisburn Distillery.

The Comrades dominated throughout but the scorecard remained blank at the break, before the Whites stunned the Dixon Park faithful with the opening goal in the first minute of the second half.

The response was immediate and ruthless with Gary Brown, Jason Johnstone and Stuart McCullough firing the Reds in to a two-goal lead in a seven-minute purple patch before Michael O’Hanlon confirmed the emphatic 4-1 win.

Brown tested Whites keeper McErlean in the opening minute, before Johnstone had an effort scrambled off the line.

Paddy Flood’s only anxious moment came in the 39th minute when he confidently dealt with an O’Connor volley, while at the opposite end Brown’s scissor kick flashed just wide.

Leading scorer Chris Trussell, making his 100th appearance, was unfortunate to see his nonchalant dink cleared off the line.

Home fans were gobsmacked in the first minute of the second session when Chapman’s angled cross-shot from the corner of the box drifted over Flood into the net.

That was the start of a four goals in eight minutes blast. Brown fired in the equaliser, and almost straight from the restart Johnstone nipped in between two defenders and the keeper to get his head to a Mark Shannon cross, to send the ball looping in to the net.

In the 53rd minute the Whites’ hopes of getting anything from the game vanished, when centre half McCullough came up for an O’Hanlon free and touched home from close range.

In the 72nd minute industrious O’Hanlon deservedly got his name on the scorecard, when he latched on to a Trussell pass and chipped over McErlean as he advanced off his line to narrow the angle.

“We totally bossed the first half without return, so I asked the lads to give me 10 per cent more and they responded magnificently,” said manager Stephen Hughes.

Collecting seven points from a possible nine has lifted Ballyclare Comrades out of the bottom three up to a respectable mid table position.

Ballyclare Comrades: Flood; C Woods, McCullough, McQuitty (K McCauley 81), Shannon; O’Hanlon, Johnstone (McClurg 79), Dobbin (C), Haskins; Brown, Trussell ( Reid 81). Subs not used: McCart, Hill.