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Uploaded Saturday, 17th Sep, 2016 at 17:27

Date: Saturday, 17th September, 2016; Competition: Danske Bank Premiership; Attendance: 721;
Portadown [0] [0]
Ballymena United [2] [2]
Venue: Shamrock Park; Kick-Off: 15:00;
Referee: Andrew Davey; Assistant 1: George Argyropoulos; Assistant 2: Adam Jeffrey; 4th Official: Neil Robinson;
[0-1] OWENS, Kyle (3 mins), [0-2] McMURRAY, Johnny (22 mins)

BALLYMENA United moved up into third place in the league table with a victory over Portadown at Shamrock Park today.
The first action of the game seen Leroy Millar go close with a header but Portadown keeper Chris McGaughey got a hand to it to force it onto the bar. United did find the net on the next attack though, Tony Kane crossing a ball and Kyle Owens heading into the right side of the net.
Kyle Owens scored the first goal of the game in the 4th minute
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United continued to press and had some impressive passages of play, without really creating any chances. It was almost 15 minutes into the game before the home side had a chance but Nathaniel Ferris seen his shot from the corner of the box easily saved by Alan Blayney. A minute later Johnny McMurray was unfortunate to see his shot from the edge of the box fly over the bar. A good piece of play between Stephen Hughes and Ferris at the edge of the box ended with a shot from Ferris but it went past the right post. It was McMurray who grabbed the second goal of the game, Daniel Wallace pressuring Brendan Shannon into a mistake and McMurray running up the left side and cutting in to fire the shot home.
Johnny McMurray grabbed the second United goal in the 22nd minute
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It was almost 3-0 to the Sky Blues just 2 minutes later but the ball was hooked over the bar by Cathair Friel at the back post. With just over 5 minutes left in the first half, Conor McCloskey seen his shot deflected over the bar by Adam Rodgers for a corner. Portadown came very close to pulling a goal back just before half time, Mark Carson taking a shot from outside the box which clipped the post and went out of play.
The first 15 minutes of the second half was a much quieter affair, with United barely creating anything. A Portadown attack just after the hour mark seen Shannon putting Hughes through but he managed to shoot over the bar. With Allan Jenkins coming on to replace Gary Thompson, United starting getting back into the game again. With 70 minutes on the clock McMurray seen his shot deflected but by the time it reached McGaughey in the Portadown net all the pace had been taken off the ball.
With just over 10 minutes left in the game Willie Faulkner came on to replace Cathair Friel, and with 8 minutes left Eoin Kane came on to replace Conor McCloskey. In the closing minutes of the game Hughes had another great chance to get the Ports on the score sheet, but he scuffed his shot. Substitute Mark McAllister was next up with a shot, but it went over the bar.
Ballymena United host Harland & Wolff Welders in the first round of the Toals County Antrim Shield on Tuesday night, kicking off at 7:45pm.
Match Report by Paul Irwin
Ballymena United Team:
Alan Blayney, Tony Kane, Kyle Owens, Gary Thompson ( Allan Jenkins 61), Conor McCloskey ( Eoin Kane 82), Cathair Friel ( Willie Faulkner 76), Daniel Wallace, Jim Ervin, Leroy Millar, Johnny McMurray, Caolan Loughran ( 51).

Subs not used: Ross Glendinning, Johnny Flynn.