Groomsport - 1st Bangor FC (Border Cup) 2-4

1st Bangor progressed into the second round of the Border with an emphatic victory over local rivals Groomsport. The scoreline of 4-2 doesn't quite do justice to the dominance 1st Bangor displayed throughout the match, particularly in controlling possession, and they will be hoping to replicate such composure in Saturday's showdown against Abbey Villa in the second round.

From the start of this match 1st Bangor continued where they left off against Kilroot in the league the week prior, controlling possession and then breaking at pace to open up a dogged Groomsport side.  James Sproule came into the defence for the absent Nichol and along with regulars Corkum, Bryson and Gourley, controlled the pace of the game with 1st Bangor's back four showing perfect poise in possession at the back. 

With Ryan "Now you see him now you don't" Oliver and Stephen "The Tanned Talisman" McCormick looking dangerous on the wings and starting to exert themselves on the game it was only a matter of time before the deadlock was broken - Oliver firing in a great ball to cause mass confusion in the Groomsport penalty area, and when the ball popped up 8 yards out Chris Scott made no mistake, turning like a ballerina on a sixpence and volleying the ball into the top corner of the net. 1-0 1st Bangor.

The goal seemed to give 1st Bangor confidence and it wasn't long before they went further ahead. Scott unleashing Oliver down the wing who picked out George Chelariu perfectly to volley off a defender and put 1st Bangor 2-0 up.

With young Michael Hunter and veteran Jeff McNamara completely dominating against the Groomsport midfield some last ditch tackling from Groomsport saw two free-kicks in dangerous positions handed to 1st Bangor. On both occasions only a fine stop from the Groomsport keeper denied Hunter from getting onto the scoresheet. However, from the resulting short corner, Gourley beat his man and drove into the box before finding Chelariu 12 yards out who literally smashed the ball past the keeper with a fine finish to send 1st Bangor 3-0 up.

In the second half 1st Bangor seemed to take their foot off the gas and two mistakes at the back saw Groomsport pull back the match to 3-2. Only a fine double save from 1st Bangor keeper Carl O'Neill denied Groomsport getting further back into the match as they battled hard to break 1st Bangor down.  However, Groomsport's admirable fighting spirit was eventually crushed when Cairnduff raced free down the left hand side and crossed superbly for McCormick to slide home and seal the win for 1st Bangor. 

Next up in the Border Cup is a tough tie against Abbey Villa on Saturday but 1st Bangor will be hoping to continue their impressive recent form and cause an upset.

- MIN. 20 - 1-0, 1st BANGOR SCORE, CHRIS SCOTT, after Ryan Oliver's assist!!!  
- MIN. 30 - 2-0, 1st BANGOR SCORE, GEORGE CHELARIU, after Ryan Oliver's assist!!!  
- MIN. 35 - 3-0, 1st BANGOR SCORE, GEORGE CHELARIU, after Ben Gourley's assist!!!
- Min. 65 - 3-1, Groomsport score. 
- Min. 75 - 3-2, Groomsport score.  
- MIN. 85 - 4-2, 1st BANGOR SCORE, STEPHEN McCORMICK, after Stevie Cairnduff's assist!!!

1st BANGOR FC: C O'Neill -  B Gourley, M Corkum, J Sproule, J Bryson - R Oliver, M Hunter, J McNamara (S Beattie), S McCormick - C Scott (J Hill), G Chelariu (S Cairnduff)

Groomsport - 1st Bangor FC (Border Cup) 2-4

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