BALLINAMALLARD UTD 1 DUNGANNON SWIFTS 0
A superbly struck curling free kick from midfielder Cathal Beacom on 81 minutes gave Ballinamallard United three points on Saturday.
It took that wonder strike from Beacom to split the sides during a tough and often dour battle at Ferney Park.
Dungannon had the better of the first half striking the woodwork twice through Harpur and Hazley.
Hazley had a great opportunity just before the break when the ball was crossed to the back post, but his first time volley struck the back of defender Chris Crilly before going to safety.
On the half time whistle full back Burns struck a great effort from 20 yards which went inches over the crossbar.
Ballinamallard changed their formation in the second half and played with more purpos.
McMenamin’s great ball found the head of Lafferty just 12 yards out, but his header was straight at keeper Coleman.
Jjason McCartney went close after that after good link up play between David Kee and Crilly and during a good period of home pressure Kee sent Martin through, but the striker shot wide of the near post after controlling the ball on his chest.
Butit was the superb left foot strike from substitute Beacom which gave the Ferney side full points to draw level with Swifts.
It was Beacom’s first goal of the season and what an important one it might just be for the Fermanagh side.
Ballinamallard manger Whitey Anderson was delighted with the result. He said the end of the season will tell how important those three points were.
“We knew there wouldn’t be too many chances and it would be a tight game. It was a bit of special magic by Beacom who hit a cracking free kick. It just makes a massive difference getting three points instead of one.
Darren Murphy, Dungannon’s manager said, “It was always going to be a set piece to win today’s game.Both sides played with a lot of commitment and I felt we were the better in the first half while Ballinamallard were the better in the second. “
Ballinamallard United: McCusker, McMenamin, Stafford, Kee, Martin (Feeney 92), Hutchinson (Beacom 30), Lafferty, McCartney, McKenna (Campbell 79), Crilly, McLoughlin
Subs: A. Murphy, Feeney, Beacom, Campbell, Noble
Dungannon Swifts: Coleman, Burns, Wilson, Armstrong, O’Rourke, Hazley (Brennan 89), Harpur, Glackin, Fitzpatrick, Sanusi, Mitchell (Lavery 79)
Subs: McCullagh, Lavery, Hutchinson, Brennan, Lowe
Referee: Colin Burns