Colts fight for three points

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

VALLEY welcomed local rivals Ballyvea to Carginagh Road having not lost a league game at home this season.

Valley Rangers Colts ...3
Ballyvea III ...1

Valley started brightly and from the off it could be seen that Ballyvea were going to get bodies behind the ball and make it hard for Valley to break them down.

Early in the game Eddie Baird had a great chance to make it 1 nil when he was played through by a quickly taken free kick by Thomas Graham, but his effort hit the bar.

Valley kept pushing for the first goal but were caught sleeping at the back and from a Ballyvea free kick the ball was knocked in at the back post. This ignited Valley into life again and Ryan Wilson was unlucky to see his effort hit the top of the bar.

Valley had a number of corners and came closest when Burns'' header at the front post was smartly saved by the Ballyvea 'keeper. Valley kept pushing for an equaliser before but the ball just wouldn't go in the net. HT 0-1.

Valley came out in the second half knowing that if they kept persistent, a goal would come. Burns, getting more involved in the game now, played a teasing ball across the six yard box, but it was just over the head of the onrushing Flanagan.

Ben Orr, making his senior debut in the Valley goal, never looked out of place and swept up anything that came his way with confidence. His goal kicks seemed to cause trouble in the Ballyvea defence and won Valley numerous corners.

From one of these a Thomas Graham header was cleared off the line and the Valley thought this wasn't going to be their day. Only minutes later though, another corner was turned in at the back post by substitute Glen Thompson to draw the scores level.

Valley now upped the pressure again and a teasing ball into the box by Stevenson was missed by both Burns and Wilson when all it needed was a touch for a certain goal.

Valley won a free kick on the edge of the box after Burns was brought down and the same man stepped up only to see the ball crash off the bar and onto the goalline and into the goalkeeper's arms. Ballyvea to their credit had a game plan and they stuck to it, somehow clearing everytime Valley came at them.

Thomas Graham began pushing forward from centre half in search of a winner and when he picked up the ball on the edge of the box, beat two men and fired the ball into the bottom corner a great pressure was lifted off the Valley shoulders.

Valley now pushed on to kill the game off and Wilson had a great chance when in on goal only to see the 'keeper make another smart save. Valley did get a third goal though when Stephen Parke's cross sailed in at the back post to seal the points for the Valley.

All-in-all, a hard-fought three points for the Valley and for the second season running do the double over Ballyvea in the league. Special mention must go to 17-year-old Ben Orr who had a very assured game on his senior debut and looks like a bright prospect for the future.


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