3 - 4
Jamieson (o.g.) (12)
Tom Ferguson (85)
James Gilmour (1)
John Murphy (44)
Jamie Shiels (51)
Ronald Cameron (88)
W. Hamilton (Belfast) (Referee)
Ballymena played their last away match of the season on Saturday, when they travelled to Larne and defeated the seasiders by the odd goal in seven.
It was not an absorbingly interesting match, being just one of those typical end-of-season affairs which we more or less expect at this time of the year. Still, Ballymena were in fairly good fettle, and for the third Saturday in succession collected both points.
Gilmour opened the scoring for Ballymena in the first minute, but twelve minutes later Larne drew level, Jamieson being bundled over the line with the ball in his hands by Glover. A minute before the interval Murphy capped a characteristic run through by scoring Ballymena's second.
Early in the second half Ewing levelled the score, but hardly had the cheers died away when Shiels headed through from Kilpatrick's pass. Later Ferguson made the score three all, but a few minutes before time Cameron tapped the ball past Irvine to win the match for Ballymena.
On their chances Ballymena should have scored seven or eight goals, A feature of the match was McNinch's steady kicking at left back. He seemed in his element, and was near top form again.
Right from the start Ballymena swept don the field. From a long punt by Reid, Millar nodded down the ball to Kilpatrick's feet; Kilpatrick slipped it into Cameron, whose shot Irvine failed to hold, and James Gilmour dashed in and steered the ball past the goalie into the net. Only thirty seconds had elapsed from the kick-off.
Larne fought back eagerly, but thanks to the fine defensive play of McCandless and McNinch they seldom got inside the penalty area. Ballymena should have been two up when a dashing run by Cameron, in which he neatly tricked four opponents, gave Gilmour another chance, but he failed to gather the ball when only six yards out, and so it went a-begging.
In a subsequent Larne attack Jamieson held an easy shot, but instead of slipping Glover adroitly he ran across goal and was shouldered over the line with the ball in his hands, Larne thus gaining a rather soft equaliser.
In the end-to-end play which followed Reid lobbed the ball well up from a free, but Gilmour steered it past the outside of the upright from close in. Later he had no better luck with a similar shot.
For a considerable period play swung from goal to goal, with nothing taking place worthy of note. Then Cameron opened up the way for Gilmour again, but Irvine saved hot shots twice in succession. Glover also failed to grasp a grand opening at the Ballymena end.
A typical dash by Murphy along the wing ended in him calling on Irvine to stop a fast drive. Then Larne made headway again, but McNinch stemmed the attack and drove the ball up to Kilpatrick, who placed it for Cameron to have another try which Irvine coped with successfully.
In the course of further Larne attacks Glover skimmed the bar with a neat effort, and then three corners fell to the homesters in quick succession, but these proved of no advantage. Both McNinch and McCandless worked steadily and well to keep the invaders out, and in one dangerous melee Cameron got the ball away out of the ruck of players.
A minute before the interval John Murphy got away from Gilmour's pass, and raced through to give Ballymena the lead.
In the first minute of the second half Turnbull dropped the ball on the bar of the Ballymena goal. Larne came back and when Glover shot Jamieson swept the ball to the side with both hands, but Ewing caught it quickly and drove it clearly into the net for the equaliser.
Ballymena were at the other end in the next minute, and following a throw-in Kilpatrick drove the ball across, and Gilmour and Shiels rose for it at the same time, but it was Jamie Shiels who nodded it into the net.
Then Nelson punted the ball out to Murphy, who cut in and placed it to Gilmour, but he drove it past from short range.
At the opposite end Jamieson saved smartly from a free taken by Small. A conspicuously good run up the middle by Cameron, in which he outwitted four opponents and swept the ball out to Murphy, was spoiled by a foul, which went unnoticed by the referee. Both Murphy and Kilpatrick were injured, the latter the more seriously, but both were able to resume soon after attention.
At the moment Ballymena were having the bigger share of the play, and the Larne defence had a busy time. In a race for goal Gilmour obliged Millar to concede a corner, and later in a Shiels-Gilmour movement the latter shot from point-blank range but Irvine was equal to the occasion.
In attempting to stop a Larne rush McNinch hit the ball against an opponent, and Ferguson and Co. dashed for goal, the raid ending in Ferguson scoring the equaliser. Jamieson might have captured the ball before Ferguson shot.
Larne attacked again, but Ballymena forced play to the other end where Nelson passed the ball up for Ronald Cameron to run in and toe it deftly past Irvine.
Match report written by Ballymena Weekly Telegraph (1 May 1931)
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