Ballyclare will face play-off match for Senior 1 survival

Ballyclare defend this Victorians attack in the local side's 2-0 win at Foundry Lane on Friday evening. INLT 10-902-CON
Ballyclare defend this Victorians attack in the local side's 2-0 win at Foundry Lane on Friday evening. INLT 10-902-CON

Ballyclare Ladies completed their league programme with a flourish with a fine 2-0 win against Victorians, but there are troubles ahead.

Strikes by Suzanne Dickey and Jaquie Hanley saved the ‘Clare girls from automatic relegation, but they still face a play-off, probably against Rainey or Raphoe in April, to preserve their Senior 1 status.

The victory against Victorians in their final match at Strathern Girls Grammar School wasn’t enough to overhaul Knock Ladies who were third-from-bottom, but it ended the survival hopes of Larne Ladies who finished at the bottom and will drop to Senior 2 next season.

Dickey opened the scoring in the 10th minute after Vikki Milligan and Joanna Mills had brought the ball into the circle, and for a time the hosts were on the back foot.

Industrious midfielders Caroline Darragh and Rebecca Beattie had the edge on their opponents, while full-backs Rebecca Campbell and Lorraine Ashcroft kept the home defence busy by overlapping down the flanks.

During the second quarter Vics mounted several attacks, but centre-backs Jade Purdy and Emma Wilson gave goalkeeper Sara Coulter good cover.

Vics continued to have the momentum after the break, forcing Coulter to make several saves while Purdy made one goal-line clearance. But, having weathered the storm, Ballyclare struck with a counter-attack in which Hanley sealed the points.

Club officials wish to thank all those who supported their recent coffee morning that raised in excess of £400.