Ballyclare and Larne suffer defeats in first games of 2015

Zoe Purdy scored Larne Ladies only goal in their 2-1 defeat to Banbridge Ladies. INLT 02-005-PSB

Zoe Purdy scored Larne Ladies only goal in their 2-1 defeat to Banbridge Ladies. INLT 02-005-PSB

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Ladies’ Hockey, Senior 1: Dungannon Ladies proved to be too strong for Ballyclare Ladies who remain in the relegation zone after Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Foundry Lane.

Vikki Milligan’s girls failed to match the tempo of the visitors in the first half, and only excellent defensive play by Jade Purdy and Gillian McMaw prevented them from turning round more than one up.

Jamesy Hagan from match sponsors Hagan Homes, with members of the Ballyclare Ladies first-team. INLT 02-904-CON

Jamesy Hagan from match sponsors Hagan Homes, with members of the Ballyclare Ladies first-team. INLT 02-904-CON

Ballyclare’s best scoring chances came from penalty corners, but shots by Caroline Darragh, McMaw and Joanna Mills failed to find the target.

During the third quarter Dungannon doubled the lead following a fine left wing move. Ballyclare hit back through Vikki Milligan who managed to force the ball over the line during a goalmouth scramble.

Girl of the Game: Central midfielder, Caroline Darragh.

Ballyclare Ladies: S Coulter, G McMaw, J Purdy, L Ashcroft, K McLeod, R Beattie, C Darragh, J Hanley, V Milligan (c), J Jones, J Mills, E Paterson, V White.

Larne Ladies began 2015 with a 2-1 home defeat to Banbridge. After an even start to the match, Zoe Purdy latched on to a long ball from Caris Greenwood and beat her marker before rounding the ‘keeper to put the home side one up.

The second half was a more open affair and Larne’s Rebecca Dalton, playing at the heart of the home defence, made a number of last-ditch tackles to preserve her side’s advantage. But the pressure told when Banbridge levelled after a one-on-one. And with around 10 minutes remaining, and after a string of penalty corners, Banbridge forced home a close-range winner after a goalmouth scramble.

Elsewhere, goals from Chloe McIlwaine (two) and Dee Wallace secured a 3-0 win for Larne Ladies II over Lurgan III. Kirsten McCully scored both goals in the Thirds’ 2-0 win at Derg Valley II.

Senior 4: Strikes by Tammy Gamble and Clare McClean made it a very happy start to 2015 for Parkview Ladies, who collected full points against South Antrim to consolidate their mid-table spot.

After a goalless first half it was Gamble who broke the deadlock, sweeping the ball home after Jenny Morrison’s effort had been blocked on the line.

McClean secured victory when she ghosted in to rattle the backboard after collecting a pass from Lauren Brady. In the closing moments Morrison made a brilliant save to keep a clean sheet.

Coach Becky Linford said: “We fielded one of our strongest teams, and if we play like this in the second half of the season we will climb the table.”

Inset pic: Jamesy Hagan from match sponsors Hagan Homes, with members of the Ballyclare Ladies first-team. INLT 02-904-CON