Home News Fixtures Tables Squad Commercial Info History Shop Under 20s
To Be Confirmed

Conor Keeley joins United

Uploaded Tuesday, 10th Sep, 2019 at 23:34

Date: Tuesday, 10th September, 2019; Competition: Toals Co Antrim Shield - Round 1; Attendance: N/A;
Ballymena United [0] [2]
Dundela [0] [1]
Venue: Ballymena Showgrounds; Kick-Off: 19:45;
Referee: Ben McMaster; Assistant 1: Stephen Bell; Assistant 2: Frankie Shanks;
[1-0] KANE, Tony (48 mins), [1-1] WATTS, Christopher (68 mins), [2-1] CARVILLE, Declan (90 mins)

DECLAN Carville scored with the last attack of the game to give hosts Ballymena United a 2-1 win over Dundela in the first round of the Toals Co. Antrim Shield.
Dundela started the game brightly and tested Jordan Williamson within 3 minutes with a long range effort from Ross Holden that stung the 'keeper's palms. It didn't take long for The Sky Blues to register their first chance either when a short corner was eventually laid off to Ross Lavery, but his shot went well wide of the Dundela goal.
After those opening exchanges Ballymena started to see a bit more of the ball than their Championship counterparts, but the Duns still possessed some danger going forward, without really threatening with a decent chance. Meanwhile for United, Shane McGinty turned down an inviting opportunity to shoot, instead teeing up Ryan Mayse, who fired over. The best chance of the half, not that it was a clear cut one, came on 25 minutes when Aaron Burns knocked down a Tony Kane cross into the path of Mayse, but from just inside the box he dragged his shot inches wide.
Dundela almost grabbed an opener before half-time when William Bingham's cross looked like falling to Tiarnan McNicholl inside the six yard box, but captain Jim Ervin was on hand to clear. The Braidmen did have the ball in the net on 40 minutes when Declan Carville played in Mayse, but the goal was ruled out for offside, as a half where Ballymena struggled to get past a determined Dundela defence ended goalless.
Ballymena made the ideal start to the second half with a fortunate goal just 3 minutes in. United missed a great chance to score when both McGinty and Mayse missed big chances from close range within seconds of either other, with the latter attempt seeing Mayse's poked shot deflect wide. The corner was swung in by Tony Kane and end up going straight into the net with the help of the unfortunate Dundela goalkeeper Jonathan Sergeant who pushed the ball into the goal.
10 minutes later it was almost 2-0 when Kane picked out McGinty with a delightful dinked ball. McGinty turned his marker with ease before seeing his shot from a bit of an angle come back off the post. A neat one two between Mayse and McGinty set the latter through on goal but he was denied by Sergeant, but by this stage it was all United.
Despite that dominance, Dundela equalised on 68 minutes. A slack pass from Steven McCullough saw him give the ball away deep inside his own half to Holden who found Christopher Watts, and he did well to get the ball out from under his feet and finish into the bottom corner.
Ballymena looked to regain the lead quickly after the leveller and had a hat trick of chances in quick succession. A long range effort from Josh Kelly took a huge deflection and wrong-footed the 'keeper, only to go just wide. From the corner Burns headed wide and minutes later the same man went close again, sending a low shot just wide. United turned to Leroy Millar and Cathair Friel from the bench with 10 minutes to go and as extra time loomed Mayse could've wrapped up the game with two chances. The first was a huge opportunity as a cross landed to Mayse in acres of space inside the box, but he could only fire over. Minutes later Millar broke and found Mayse, but his first time effort again flew over the bar.
Deep into added time, with extra-time looming, and in the final attack of the match Carville popped up to head home a cross via the underside of the bar, with Sergeant unable to claw the ball back before it had crossed the line, as United squeezed through a tough encounter to set up a quarter-final tie with Crusaders.
The Sky Blues host Coleraine at Ballymena Showgrounds on Saturday afternoon, kicking off at 3:00pm.

NOTE: Admission to this game is strictly ticket only - check our Twitter and Facebook feeds for ticket details.
Match Report by Phillip McPeake
Ballymena United Team:
Jordan Williamson, Tony Kane, Scot Whiteside, Ryan Mayse, Shane McGinty, Steven McCullough, Declan Carville, Jim Ervin, Aaron Burns ( Leroy Millar 80), Joshua Kelly, Ross Lavery ( Cathair Friel 80).

Subs not used: Ross Glendinning, Andrew McGrory, Jude Winchester, Leo Brown, Ross Lavery.