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David Cushley (62)

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Allan Jenkins and Nigel Beacom in action (Picture: Darren Kidd/PressEye.com)

SKY BLUES STRENGTHEN TOP SIX HOPES

BALLYMENA United strengthened their claims of a top six finish with this single goal defeat of Ballinamallard United at The Showgrounds.

Tony Kane might have opened the scoring for the Sky Blues as early as the fifth minute with an attempted chip from some 30 yards which landed on top of the net.

Ally Teggart then threatened with a couple of efforts, one saved by Alvin Rouse and the other going over before the Mallards hit back with their best chance of the first half when Nathan Cashel saw a header tipped over by Yohann Lacroix.

Ballymena's best chance, perhaps, came just before the break after Aaron Stewart just failed to get a strong enough touch to divert a Mark Surgenor flick from Kane's free-kick.

But Glenn Ferguson's side did find a way through on 62 minutes courtesy of a low David Cushley right-foot shot after he had been played through by Allan Jenkins.

Skipper Jenkins might have added a second later in the game but he could only blast the ball over after collecting a Thompson lay-off.

Ballymena United: Lacroix, Kane, Munster, Taylor,
Stewart, Surgenor, Taggart, Thompson, Cushley, Teggart, Jenkins subs Dolan (replaced Cushley 77), Ruddy (replaced Thompson 90+1), Lowry (replaced Teggart 87), McLellan (not used), Davidson (not used)

Ballinamallard United: Rouse, Keohane, Stafford, Kee, Cashel, Lecky, C. Beacom, Sheridan, N. Beacom, Campbell, Crilly subs Crawford (replaced Sheridan 73), Currie (not used), McManus (replaced Lecky 78), Carrothers (not used), Martin (replaced Campbell 68)

Referee:

Attendance: 591