BANGOR 85(4) LURGAN 73(3)
LURGAN seniors have secured their place in the top division.
They travelled to Ward Park on Saturday for their last game before a three week break to take on defending champions Bangor in the NIBA first division, and were happy to return with three points with three rinks winning and one losing.
This result should cement Lurgan’s position in the top division for another season and should give renewed confidence for the team who showed they can compete with the top teams away from home, a much needed boost as they have two away local derby trips against Portadown and Banbridge when league action returns.
Bangor started strongly and built up a 14 shot lead at the fifth end. Lurgan battled back and trailed by six at the midway stage. With one Lurgan rink struggling Bangor poured on the pressure to lead by 16 at three quarter distance, a lead which never looked in threat as they won by 12 shots.
On rink one Stephen Poots, Reece Millar, Billy Martin and skip Mansell Montgomery dealt well against a Bangor rink skipped by R. McCutcheon but trailed 4-2 after five ends.
Lurgan showed their class by winning five of the next six ends to lead 14-6 at the 11th end and by three quarter distance this lead remained intact at 18-10. The Lurgan four were always in control of the rink and won 22-16.
On rink two Bobby Boness, Ronnie McCullough, Pete McGrail and skip David Beattie fell behind early against the Bangor rink skipped by R. Hastings, trailing 11-1 after five ends.
The Bangor four maintained the ten shot lead at the halfway stage 15-5. Beattie lifted the spirits of his colleagues and the fightback began at three quarter distance when the Lurgan rink had the deficit down to four shots at 16-14.
They took the lead for the first time on the 17th end which was a lead they would not allow to slip away as they finished strongly, winning 23-19.
On rink three Gareth Bunting, Alan Briggs, Eddie McCourt and skip Alan Roberts won three of the first five ends however they trailed 6-3 after giving up two high scoring ends.
This was a trend that continued throughout the day as the Bangor rink, skipped by G. Scott, won 11 of the next 12 ends picking up 26 shots to Lurgan’s solitary shot to lead 32-4 after 17 ends. The Lurgan four at least managed to get into double figures on a disappointing day as they lost 33-10.
On rink four Ivor Mitchell, Bobby Ruddell, Kris Matchett and skip Harry Cosgrove edged a tight opening against the Bangor rink skipped by S. Martin to lead 6-5 after five ends.
The Lurgan four pulled away slightly over the next five ends and led 13-8 at halfway. Bangor fought back and reduced this lead to three at the three quarter distance as Lurgan led 15-12. Despite winning four of the last six ends they were unable to complete the comeback as Lurgan held on to win 18-17.