McKEE STRIKE ENOUGH FOR BLUES
Linfield edged to a narrow defeat of Ballymena United at a wet and windy Showgrounds.
The Blues started brightly and, after creating a number of early chances, might have moved in front on 20 minutes when Jack Scott played Chris McKee through on goal but his subsequent effort came back off the right post.
Then, a little later, a Kirk Millar corner fell for Scott at the near post but he could only send his effort wide of the target.
But United might have grabbed the advantage themselves around the half-hour mark after TJ Murray sent a goalbound strike towards the top corner only for Chris Johns to produce a superb save to turn the ball over.
Linfield started the second half on the front foot, and came close again when Kyle McClean saw a stront strike blocked after a scramble in the box.
Murray responded for the Sky Blues again not long after that but was denied by a Chris Shields clearance.
The visitors did have the ball in the net on the hour after McClean fired past O'Neill from fully 30 yards only for the ball to come back off the underside of the bar while John Robertson's follow-up was ruled out offside.
However Linfield did finally move in front with seven minutes remaining after Shields played a superb pass through for McKee to latch onto and fire strong beyond O'Neill into the bottom corner.
Ballymena United: O'Neill, Nelson, Whiteside, Graham, Waide, McCullough, McGuigan, Taylor, Murray, McMurray, Place subs Johnston, O'Boyle, Gibson, Tennant, Crawford, McMullan
Linfield: Johns, Finlayson, Shields, Scott, Millar, McClean, Cooper, Hall, Clarke, McKee, Robertson subs Walsh, Newberry, McBrien, Mulgrew, Annett, McKay, McStravick