Ryan Curran (59)


Paul Heatley (09)
Philip Lowry (43)
Paul Heatley (60)
Paul Heatley (75)
Jordan Owens (79)


Paul Heatley with the match ball after his hat-trick (©INPHO/Stephen Hamilton)


Paul Heatley grabbed a hat-trick as Crusaders travelled west to defeat Ballinamallard United at Ferney Park.

Gavin Whyte might have handed the visitors an early lead when he directed a header towards goal only to see 'keeper Richard Brush tip the ball onto the post.

The Crues grabbed the advantage after just nine minutes when a long Jordan Forsythe throw-in was flicked on by Jordan Owens for Heatley to nod past Brush at the back post.

And it was 2-0 a couple of minutes from the break when Philip Lowry finished well at the back post after Heatley had touched on a Billy Joe Burns throw-in.

The Mallards reduced the arrears just before the hour mark when Ryan Curran weaved his way through the Crusaders defence before slotting the ball past Brian Jensen at the near post.

However, Heatley restored the visitors advantage just a minute later after that when the ball fell for him from an Owens knockdown as the ball was punted forward.

Then, on 75 minutes, he notched up his hat-trick after fending off the attentions of the Mallards defence to beat Brush for a third time, this time at the right post.

Owens completed the scoring four minutes after that, controlling the ball on the edge of the area before finishing with confidence following an excellent Burns burst down the right.

BBC Sport NI coverage

Ballinamallard United: Brush, McConnell, McLaughlin, Clarke, McGinty, Curran, Leddy, McIlwaine, Burns, McCann, Smyth subs Crawford (not used), Canning (replaced McCann 64), Taheny (not used), Armstrong (replaced McGinty 84), Brennan (replaced McConnell 77)

Crusaders: Jensen, Burns, Beverland, Brown, Lowry, Ward, Carvill, Forsythe, Owens, Heatley, Whyte subs Cushley (not used), Snoddy (replaced Whyte 62), Glackin (replaced Heatley 80), McAllister (replaced Owens 84), Kerr (not used)

Referee: Raymond Crangle

Attendance: 379