Super start for Ards sees Whites humbled

Distillery's Nathan McConnell during a recent match.  Pic by Russell Pritchard / Presseye
Distillery's Nathan McConnell during a recent match. Pic by Russell Pritchard / Presseye

Lisburn Distillery travelled to the Bangor Fuels arena to take on Ards with manager Tommy Kincaid’s side going into the game on a very poor run of league form in the calendar year.

Niall Currie’s side knew a win, and if other results went their way, they could jump up to second in the Championship table so with the stakes high for both sides the game got underway.

Twelve minutes later the Distillery fans were doubtless wishing it had never started at all.

Ards were immediately on the front foot with Whites ‘keeper Ryan Mcbride making a superb save to deny the hosts a lead inside two minutes when ex-Glenavon midfielder Brendan Shannon picked up the loose ball outside the box before driving a powerful shot goalwards only to be denied by McBride’s flying save.

Early warning signs then for Kincaid’s side that if the defence didn’t get tighter to their men this could be a long afternoon indeed.

Distillery, however, didn’t learn from the early warning salvo and with only five minutes played Ards were ahead when Willie Faulkner played in, the home sides recent signing from Loughall, Stephen O’Neil who coolly rounded McBride and placed the ball low into the net.

The second goal wasn’t far away when a cross was whipped in over the defenders, the ball falling perfectly at the back post for Greg Hall to slot low into the net.

Ards were relentless by this stage and it got even worse for the visitors when Stephen O’Neil was played through one on one inside twelve minutes to smash a third goal into the net. Once again the defence won’t want to see any replays as it should have been prevented leaving the striker a gift that he duly accepted.

At this point it was more or less game over but the Whites wouldn’t go down without a fight their first real chance coming on fifteen minutes as Stephen Doyle surged down the flank to cross into Southam his shot however was very well defended by Hall who made a fantastic block.

Echoes of that six goal humbling by Ballyclare two weeks ago surrounded the Distillery supporters and there would have no doubt they feared the worst going into the second half.

Ards completed the rout in the second half and it was a goal of real beauty as Faulkner collected the ball outside the box before driving a powerful laser of a shot into the net leaving McBride helpless.

For the Whites their recent poor run continues and if the points don’t come soon the Whites could find themselves be looking over their shoulders at the chasing pack.