WITH the on-going help of club historian Hunter McClelland, colerainefc.com brings you the latest instalment of the ‘Down Memory Lane’ series as Coleraine ended 2005 on a high with a win at Ards…
Saturday, December 31, 2005.
Ards 2-5 Coleraine
Goals – Hunter (22 mins), Hill (34 mins); Boyce (3 mins), Anderson (4 mins & 56 mins), Beatty (14 mins), Neill (30 mins).
COLERAINE bounced back from their Boxing Day disappointment with a morale-boosting win over basement boys Ards at Clandeboye Park to end 2005 on a high.
The Bannsiders have struggled to find the net this season but had no such problems on Saturday as they raced into a 3-0 lead in the opening 15 minutes.
And what goals they were as Darren Boyce, Noel Anderson and Stephen Beatty all giving Ards keeper Ian Lester no chance with their efforts for goal of the season.
John Neill grabbed his first senior goal for the club just before the break and Anderson added his second after the restart to give Marty Quinn’s men a much-needed win and move them several places up the table.
The Bannsiders desperately needed to get something out of the game after a run which had saw them win only once in their last six games and they raised into a three goal lead after only 14 minutes as Darren Boyce, Noel Anderson and Stephen Beatty all fired home.
Ards responded as Hunter fired in another spectacular goal as he spotted Davy O’Hare off his line before curling a delicate chip over the big stopper.
Coleraine restored their three-goal advantage though on the half hour as defender John Neill reacted the quickest to nod home from close range after Beatty’s in-swinging corner had been deflected on to the bar.
But Ards fought back again as they were awarded a rather dubious penalty four minutes later. Hunter surged into the box, lost control of the ball and ended up sprawled on the ground with the referee harshly adjudging that Kyle McVey had fouled him.
Jason Hill stepped up and somehow squirmed his effort under O’Hare despite the keeper’s best efforts.
Noel Anderson almost restored the three-goal cushion just before the break as he latched on to Beatty’s flick on, the midfielder showed com-posure in the box to cre-ate a bit of space but unfortunately his low shot cannoned off the foot of the post and away to safety.
The former Lisburn Distillery man wasn’t to be denied though and he grabbed his second 11 minutes after the restart after Carson’s corner was deflected into his path, he steadied himself before curling home from just inside the box.
The Bannsiders con-trolled the game from there on in and were unlucky not to add to their lead with both the recalled Bryan Tosh and Ciaran Ferry spurning chances.
With nine minutes left Carson almost rounded off the spectacular scoring with a typically glorious effort as he blazed a trail through the Ards defence. Leaving defenders in his wake he bore down Lester’s goal, but the keeper managed to turn his effort from a tight angle around the post.
Just before the end the visiting support had further cause for celebration as Stewart Clanachan made a welcome return to first team action as he replaced Ryan McLaughlin.
ARDS: Lester, Wray, Tumelty, Adair, Baillie, Hill, Campbell (McVea 85 mins), Hunter, Murray (Knox 85 mins), Waterworth, Hegan.
Sub not used: Davidson.
COLERAINE: O’Hare, McLaughlin (Clanachan ’83 mins), Gray, Neill, McVey, Beatty, Anderson, Boyce (Watt ’78 mins), Tosh (Spratt ’83 mins), Ferry, Carson.