As expected, the top of the table clash between Lurgan Town Ladies and Comber Rec Ladies was an exciting, challenging contest for both sides. With 10 minutes to go, Lurgan Town were leading 1-0, but hearts were broken at the Arena, as the visitors scored two late goals to snatch victory in stoppage time.
It took the home side about 10 minutes to settle down, and they had to defend in the opening spell. But after that Kerry Taggart, Tina Brush and Lana Black all had shots on target or narrow misses, while Comber Rec were restricted to a few long range shots that were comfortably caught by Emma McClements in nets. Lurgan Town Ladies thought they had taken the lead on 33 minutes, when a flick from Kerry saw Sophie Weir through, but her goal was ruled offside. A few minutes later, a long range shot by Comber Rec was heading just inside the post, but Emma dived and palmed it away. Then 5 minutes before half-time, Lana chased down a loose ball, and crossed it into the box for a decisive header by Kerry, to make it 1-0 at half time.
In the second half, both sides had chances, with a Tracy Orr free kick hitting the top netting, and a long range shot by Comber hitting the crossbar. Lurgan appeared to be having the better of the chances though, and on more than one occasion, supporters could not believe how the ball did not get over the line and into the net, or how young Jess Whelan’s shot didn’t scrape inside the post. But then in the 82nd minute, a free kick from Comber Rec went over the wall and into the net, and they got their equaliser. Both sides kept pressing for a winner in the final minutes. Then as the game entered stoppage time, Comber got a corner, and the clearance broke to one of their midfielders, who struck it into the net to make it 2-1 to the visitors.
Manager Davy Hodgens could not fault the effort put in by all of his players in this first ever league defeat for Lurgan Town Ladies, but it was not to be their night. The players are determined to get back to winning ways in their match against Ballynahinch Ladies next week.
Team: E McClements, T Orr, D Douglas, C Laird, L Thompson, L Gibson, C Lynn, S Weir, L Black, T Brush, K Taggart. Subs: T Smith, J Whelan, R Davis (all used)