Stephen Murray (73)
Stephen Murray (77)

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Stephen Murray is mobbed as his two goals helped Warrenpoint to victory (©INPHO/Presseye/Philip Magowan)

MURRAY BRACE SECURES CRUCIAL WIN FOR WARRENPOINT

Two second half Stephen Murray goals helped Warrenpoint Town to a crucial victory over Carrick Rangers at the Belfast Loughshore Hotel Arena.

Andrew Mooney created the first effort of note on four minutes with a low strike which was palmed away by Warrenpoint 'keeper Berraat Türker.

Mooney tested Türker again a few minutes after that with a free-kick from outside the area which was again dealt with.

Warrenpoint might have found a way through just before the half-hour mark when Lorcan Forde teed Darren Murray up to fire over the bar while, at the other end, Eamon McAllister caused a moment of concern with a shot from the edge of the area.

Rangers were reduced to ten men on 43 minutes following Aaron Smyth's challenge on Stephen Moan, prompting referee Arnold Hunter to show a straight red card.

The visitors tried to capitalise on their numerical advantage after the break with two chances in quick succession early on.

Stephen Murray did well to get himself into a one-on-one situation with 'keeper Harry Doherty only to drag his left-foot finish wide of the far post while, moments after that, Alan Davidson volleyed wide from the edge of the box following a good team move.

'Point continued to press with T.J. Murray coming even closer when he rattled the crossbar before two goals in three minutes secured the win for Matthew Tipton's side.

Stephen Murray found a way through on 74 minutes with a strong finish into the roof of the net after Martin Murray's corner had been headed back across the box by Conor McMenamin.

Then, just three minutes after that, Murray doubled his tally for the afternoon with a prodded effort after Forde had knocked the ball over from the right.

And Town could even afford the luxury of a late missed penalty after Darren Murray saw his 87th minute spot-kick saved while Davidson failed to tuck away the rebound.

BBC Sport NI coverage

Carrick Rangers: Doherty, Smyth, Larmour, Gage, McMullan, Chapman, McAllister, Surgenor, Taggart, Mooney, Maybin subs Clarke (replaced Taggart 40), Morrow (not used), Rice (not used), Roy (replaced Mooney 73), Hassin (replaced Maybin 54)

Warrenpoint Town: Türker, Moan, Mackle, Dane, McMenamin, D. Murray, S. Murray, Forde, Davidson, T.J. Murray, Wallace subs Parr (not used), Foster (not used), M. Murray (replaced Mackle 15), McGrandles (not used), Reilly (not used)

Referee: Arnold Hunter

Attendance: 310

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