Distillery 0
Ballymena United 2
League (Irish Premier League)


0 - 2

Ballymena United

League (Irish Premier League)
Tuesday, December 18th, 2007
New Grosvenor Park
7:45 PM Kick-off

None. Kevin Kelbie (50)
David Cushley (59)

Team Managers
Paul Kirk Tommy Wright

Starting Eleven
R. McCann,
Paul Murphy
Aaron Callaghan
Jonathan Flynn
Craig McClean
Albert Watson
Gary Haveron
Stephen Lowry
Gavin Melaugh
Garth Scates
David Cushley
Kevin Kelbie

Murdock (replaced Magee 83), Johnston (replaced Shaw 70), McConnell (replaced Ferguson 66), McMenamin (not used), Allen (not used Simon Kelly
Stuart King
Lee Patrick
Mark Picking
Darren Fitzgerald

None. Stuart King for David Cushley (77)
Lee Patrick for Garth Scates (83)
Mark Picking for Stephen Lowry (88)

None. None.

Red Cards
None. None.

Match Officials

Arnold Hunter (Maguiresbridge) (Referee)

Match Report

BALLYMENA United continued their recent rich run of form with victory over Lisburn Distillery in this re-arranged Carnegie Premier League game at Ballyskeagh.

The initial game at the start of the month had only lasted 77 minutes, before floodlight failure caused the game to be abandoned by referee Arnold Hunter with Distillery leading 2-1.

Tommy Wright's side grabbed their second chance and moved up into fourth in the league. But they didn't have it easy against the Whites.

Distillery had the better of the first half proceedings and after just three minutes Paul Muir's goalbound header was well saved by the outstreched Paul Murphy in the visiting goal.

The home side continued to pile on the pressure as on 18 minutes, in-form Andrew Waterworth's shot forced another smart save out of the Ballymena United goalkeeper.

Kevin Kelbie playing as the lone striker was struggling for support in a new formation - as the Sky Blues' only meaningful chance of the half fell to David Cushley who failed to threaten Matthews.

Distillery finished the half in the ascendency as Ballymena native, Paul Muir, fired a free-kick which just clipped the top of the crossbar.

The Braidmen came out like a team possessed in the second half as they produced one of their best second half displays in years, firstly Scates had an effort cleared off the line a minute after the restart.

This set the tone for the half as David Cushley then raced through but seen his effort hit the crossbar.

On 50 minutes, the opening goal came - as Garth Scates' cross from the right found Kelbie, who held off his marker, and had time 'toe-poke' a shot past Matthews.

Nine minutes later United's free-flowing football got the better of the home side again, when Aaron Callaghan's superb ball down the channel found Kelbie who released Stephen Lowry; who played a fantastic cross which Cushley met with a glancing header for the second goal.

Tommy Wright's dominated the half from start to finish and the impressive Gavin Melaugh went close again.

Distillery midfielder Ryan McCann was sent-off in the 79th minute when he seemingly caught Lowry with an elbow to the Limavady midfielder's face. Referee Arnold Hunter had no hesitation in giving a red-card.

An impressive 2-0 victory for the Sky Blues moves them up to fourth in the table, leapfrogging the Lisburn Whites.

Match report written by Official Ballymena United website

Squad Statistics (as at December 18th, 2007)

2007-2008 All Time
Paul Murphy (GK)22 20 - 60 -
Aaron Callaghan21 121511
Jonathan Flynn18 9191
Craig McClean22 20 - 79 -
Albert Watson22 2011937
Gary Haveron26 16 - 939
Stephen Lowry21 142262
Gavin Melaugh26 15 - 22 -
Garth Scates28 20314915
David Cushley18 92152
Kevin Kelbie22 1558538
Mark Picking (sub)32 1645511
Lee Patrick (sub)29 121607
Stuart King (sub)26 111716

League Table (as at December 18th, 2007)

Pld W D L Pts
1. Cliftonville 12 10 2 0 32
2. Linfield 12 10 1 1 31
3. Glentoran 12 9 2 1 29
4. BALLYMENA UTD 12 7 1 4 22
5. Distillery 12 7 0 5 21
6. Newry 12 6 2 4 20
7. Portadown 12 6 1 5 19
8. Crusaders 12 4 3 5 15
9. Dungannon 12 3 4 5 13
10. Glenavon 12 4 0 8 12
11. Armagh City 12 3 3 6 12
12. Coleraine 12 3 3 6 12
13. Limavady Utd 12 3 2 7 11
14. Institute 12 2 3 7 9
15. Donegal Celtic 12 2 2 8 8
16. Larne 12 1 3 8 6