Mossley prove too strong for battling Larne

The rinks were busy when Mossley enterained Larne on Saturday. INLT 19-903-SK
The rinks were busy when Mossley enterained Larne on Saturday. INLT 19-903-SK

Larne’s Senior team travelled to rivals Mossley on Saturday, as they looked to bounce back from last week’s humbling experience at home to Pickie. The selectors had kept faith with the same team and an improved result was expected against their newly promoted hosts.

The Glenarm Road men found the conditions difficult through the opening ends, playing on a much slower and irregular surface than usual.

A loss of five on the seventh end left Alan McLean’s quartet facing an uphill struggle at 3-12, and with Paul Robinson’s four also on the back foot at 4-14 , things were looking bleak. David McRandal’s men were in contention trailing 8-10, while Michael Murphy’s rink held a slender 9-8 advantage.

The game changed dramatically over the next eight ends as Larne fought their way back into the game.

Robinson still struggled 10-23, and Murphy had fallen 13-16 behind, but McLean had battled back to 12-15 and McRandal had raced into a 25-11 lead to leave Larne just five down going into the final ends.

Larne continued to chip away at their deficit but some poor bowling and shot selections at crucial times handed the initiative back to the home team, who eventually closed out the game to win by nine shots.

McLean had a chance to win his point on the final end but fell short, but Murphy did manage to steal his with a double at the last.

McRandal unfortunately lost momentum over the final ends to only win by five, as the opposition went long. Robinson eventually lost by 14 on another disappointing day.

This weekend the seniors face a daunting trip to top team Ballymena looking to get their season back on track.

In-form Gavin Johnston, who again impressed at third, will get his chance at skip in the absence of Paul Robinson. Andy Thom has been promoted to third after his fine display at Mossley, while George Woods returns at second on McRandal’s rink.

Rink scores: 1. S Dalrymple, A Thom, G Johnston, D McRandal won 27-22; 2. H Millar, E Wilson, N Todd, M Murphy won 19-18; 3. A Sidwell, C Snoddy, R Lyness, P Robinson lost 14-28; 4. D Witherspoon, B Smyth, S Bell, A McLean lost 18-20.