TEN MAN CARRICK FIGHT BACK FOR A POINT
Carrick Rangers came from two goals and a man down to earn a point from Portadown's visit to the Loughview Leisure Arena.
A promising start to proceedings resulted in chances at either end. Corey McMullan might feel he could have done better after meeting a Matthew Carson corner at the near post only to send his shot over the bar, while Adam Salley was thwarted by keeper Aaron Hogg from close range.
The Ports went one better on 19 minutes through Michael Ruddy who headed home in off an upright after a Stephen Teggart cross met him inside the box.
Carrick attempted to get back onto level terms with a couple of David Cushley efforts, one from distance and the other a low free-kick, both of which failed to hit the target.
Portadown doubled their advantage towards the end of the first half when Salley sent a glancing header past Hogg at the near post from Billy Stedman's corner.
The home side could have pulled one back moments from the break, however, only for Jordan Gibson to head against the crossbar from a Carson corner.
It looked grim for Stuart King's side on 51 minutes when they were reduced to ten men after Gibson's dismissal for an off the ball incident with Howard Beverland, who was cautioned for his part in proceedings.
However, Rangers pulled a goal back just after the hour when Steven Gordon volleyed home from a corner.
Cushley then had a go with a turn and shot from the edge of the box but Jethren Barr was able to deal with the effort.
But Carrick's second came just four minutes after that courtesy of Reece Glendinning's back post finish after Ben Tilney's low cross was deflected into his path.
Both sides had their chances to claim victory in the closing minutes with Oisin Conaty sending a free header from close range wide for the Ports and Emmett McGuckin seeing an effort destined for the bottom corner saved by Barr.
Carrick Rangers: Hogg, Ervin, Gordon, Cushley, McMullan, E. Kelly, Glendinning, Gibson, Carson, Scully, Tilney subs Skeet (not used), Surgenor (replaced Scully 46), McGuckin (replaced E. Kelly 46), Cherry (replaced Carson 46), Chambers (not used), Waite (not used), Anderson (replaced McMullan 90+3)
Portadown: Barr, Hall, Ruddy, Tipton, Salley, Anderson, Conaty, Teggart, Murphy, Beverland, Stedman subs Burns (not used), McCallum (not used), McNally (not used), Smith (replaced Conaty 85), Doherty (not used), Dugan (replaced Anderson 80), Chatee (not used)