Seaside joy for the Bannsiders

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Coleraine had a very good 50-shot victory away to basement battlers Ballycastle last Monday night at a mild Mary Street.

The Lodge Road men were coming off the back of a disappointing 6-1 defeat away to Dunluce and would be out to make amends, whilst Ballycastle had defeated Portglenone 5-2 away from hometo move them 10.5 points clear of bottom side, Kilrea.

It was a very good start from the Coleraine lads as they opened up an early 12-shot lead on their hosts before the home side reduced the deficit to six shots at the halfway stage of the game. However, the Bannsiders soon clicked into gear and extended their advantage out to 35 shots before clinching a thoroughly deserved 93-43 victory over a battling Seaside outfit.

On rink four, Ally Davison’s four had an excellent win against Fred Morrow’s quartet. It was a barnstorming start for the visiting rink as they claimed three counts of three and a four in the opening five ends to move 13-1 in front of their hosts. Paul O’Neill, Trevor Steele, Alan Irwin and Ally kept the pressure on and remained 12 shots to the good at the halfway stage before their good bowling paid off with a count of five on the 16th ahead, as they eventually claimed a superb 31-6 victory.

The rink of David McConnell, Stephen Brewster, Basil Kennedy and David Gaile had a very good victory over James McMullan on rink three. Neither side could be separated after five ends of play before a count of four on the 11th and despite a spirited performance from the home rink, Gaile and his men continued to play good bowls as they maintained their lead with a handful of ends remaining. In the final end, the Coleraine rink claimed a count of six to seal an excellent 26-13 win.

It was another good win for Coleraine on rink two as Ian Ross defeated David Hayes. Mark Mason, Jim Duncan, David Reilly and Ian opened up an early five shot advantage on the hosts before seeing their lead cut to three shots at the halfway stage. However, a run of three threes had Ross’ men 11 shots to the good before they eventually sealed a very good 22-11 victory.

Over on rink one, Victor Dallas’ four ground out a hard fought win against John McKeegan’s quartet. It wasn’t a great start from the visiting foursome as they fell three shots behind early on before trailing by seven shots at the halfway stage. Jordan Dallas, Jimmy O’Neill, Jonny Calvin and Victor knuckled down and only conceded a single shot in the second half of the game as they reduced the deficit to four shots with four ends remaining. It took a brilliant last bowl from McKeegan to save a count of six on the last end as Victor and his rink claimed a very good 14-13 win.

It was a good result for the Bannsiders, in what has been a disappointing campaign, possibly nursing a hangover from last season’s Senior Cup triumph.

Coleraine sit third in the Senior League table with two games remaining, they face Ballymoney at home on Monday night, whilst Ballycastle’s resurgence is halted as they look to stave off relegation from the top flight.