Double penalty pain for Dollingstown

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Dollingstown came away from PSNI feeling very hard done by having competed well throughout the 90 minutes but didn’t get the rub of the green with not one but two controversial penalties conceded.

Both teams opened strongly with most of the play in midfield area without really testing either keeper.

Indeed the best move of the game came on 25 minutes when Niall Lavery played in Jamie Tomelty whose cross from the right was headed over by striker Richard Thompson.

Then on 37 minutes PSNI were awarded a penalty when Nathan McConnell, who was trying to clear the ball, was adjudged to have brought down the striker and the centre forward duly despatched low into the corner.

Then on the hour mark PSNI were awarded a second penalty of the afternoon when Jordan Gibson, who had a very solid game in central midfield, was adjudged to have brought down the player when clearing a breaking ball from a corner kick and the centre forward converted again from the spot.

PSNI then went 3-0 up five minutes later from a deflected shot after yet another strange referring decision by awarding a free kick in central midfield area from a genuine challenge by captain Aaron Moffett.

Manager Gary Duke then replaced Lavery and Tomelty with Scott Adams and Marty Hughes but at this stage the game was really over as a contest.

However Gibson headed home a right wing cross from Denver on 90 minutes to reduce the deficit, but it was a mere consolation for Dollingstown.

Dollingstown: Fletcher, Denver, Moffett, Rodgers, McConnell, Hand, Lavery, Gibson, Walker, Thompson and Tomelty.

Subs: were Adams, Hughes, Rodgers, Coleman and Hamilton.

Dollingstown are away to Sport & Leisure Swifts on Thursday night with a 6.30pmkick-off.

On Saturday their fight for survival continues with a home clash with fellow strugglers Portstewart.

Four points from the remaining games might be enough to see the Dollybirds remain in Championship 2 for another season.