Confidence is building

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After a shaky start to the season Lurgan’s Senior team posted to great wins in the

past week to take them well up the bottom half of the NIBA Division 2 League.

They showed a renewed spirit to win and are moulding better as a team.

In a midweek away match they shocked top of the league team Carrickfergus by beating them by 7 shotsand collecting 5.5 points. Building on their success they took on Sydenham at home at the weekend and emerged as winners of a tight game by 5 shots to take 6 points.

It was nip and tuck from the start against Sydenham with the home side going 8 shots up after 8 ends but then finding themselves 8 shots adrift at the midpoint.

Being 7 shots down after 17 ends they clawed their way back into the game, and showing grit and determination, they took a lead of 4 shots after the 19th end but losses across some rinks reduced their lead to 1 shot going into the last end. It was a brilliant finish for Lurgan with Mansel Montgomery’s picking up 4 shots and Alan Briggs’ adding another couple for Lurgan to win by 5 shots.

Alan Briggs, skipping on Rink 1, with Alan Roberts, Gordon Bell and Dick McClune had a troublesome afternoon against G Dawson’s rink. After winning the first two ends, they were on the losing end of the next 8 ends to be 16-2 down at the midpoint.

Picking up some ends wins they fought back to be 24-10 going into the last end but their 2-shot win on that end was a major contribution to Lurgan’s success on the day.

On Rink 2 Mansel Montgomery, skip, Jeffrey McCullough, Dan Dempsey and Ronnie McCullough took on C Thompson’s rink and played masterful bowls to be 10-6 ahead at the halfway stage and after the 17th end they were holding on to a slender 14-12 lead. Two significant 4-shot wins, with one of them on the last end completed a good afternoon’s work.

Harry Cosgrove, skip on Rink 3, ably supported by Bobby Ruddell, Declan McCabrey went into 7-shot lead after 4 ends against N Morrison’s rink but with his rink taking 8 shots the Lurgan men were 3 shots adrift after 9 ends. Cosgrove rallied his men to retrieve a lead of 19-13 after 15 ends.

Although they lost five of the remaining ends they restricted the ends wins to single shots. A 2-shot win on 20th end saw them home by 21-18: another vital Lurgan point.

Skipping on Rink 4, John Gilliland, Peter McGrail and Bobby Boness played a superb game against R Watson’s rink to win well by 23-15. Leading 18-12 after 18 ends they added a terrific 5-shot win on the next end to take their lead to 23-12 and hold on to finish 23-15 ahead.

On Saturday Lurgan A go to East Belfast to play Private Greens League team, Belmont in the third round of the IBA Senior Challenge and are hoping for another win to see them through to the next stage. Consequently they will be travelling to Whitehead to play their B team in an NIBA Division 2 match on Tuesday evening.