NAFL Div 1B new boys Aquinas visited The Millbridge for the last of our midweek start of season fixtures. The visitors were fresh off the back of an 8-0 victory vs fellow 1B side Dundonald in the Steel & Son’s Cup.
At The Millbridge, the sun shone down during the warm ups and the rain that caused havoc earlier in the day didn’t appear too much throughout the duration of the game.
The Home Side started off well and caused the visitors some early problems on the wet grass. Ross Murray looked dangerous on the right but his tame effort was stopped easily by the Aquinas goalkeeper. The United front three worked hard and looked threatening anytime they went forward, fed by those behind them.
But it was the away team who finally broke the deadlock. Halfway through the first half, Aquinas had a corner cleared but the clearance was only returned wide to the original set piece taker. With room to turn and pick his cross, he found a free black and blue shirt arriving at the back post to make it 1-0 and bruise the confidence of the United side.
Not long after, Aquinas were able to double their lead. Ballynahinch should have been awarded a free kick, but the referee allowed play to continue and Aquinas capitalised. They broke beyond the midfield and slotted home from 25 yards leaving the goalkeeper with no chance.
The half finished 2-0 and both teams trudged back in to the changing rooms to recharge and regroup.
The second half started well for United, with the home team on the front foot again. Unfortunately it didn’t last long and Aquinas took a rare chance and nicked a third.
Ballynahinch began to struggle with injuries and fitness in the final half hour. A gruelling work out vs Crewe United a few days before, and 5 games in 10 days for some of the squad began to take it’s toll. The changed red kit began to look like the Walking Dead.
However, coming off the bench, Gareth Bingham scored the best goal of the game. The veteran forward weaved between two defenders and picked out the top corner from outside the box to make it 4 – 1. Top Bins. Top Bings. But it was too late for BUFC to mount a comeback.
Another soft goal and a defensive mix up led to Aquinas’ 5th and 6th in the last few minutes to put the game beyond doubt. The referee soon called for full time.
A disappointing finish and a flattering scoreline, but United will regroup and look to pick up more points in their next league fixture. They return to The Millbridge on 24 August to face Mossley.
Ballynahinch United 1 – 6 Aquinas FC
|Competition:||NAFL Division 1B|