Warrenpoint stay up after thrilling clash at Milltown

Warrenpoint's Conor McDonald celebrates his goal
Warrenpoint's Conor McDonald celebrates his goal

Warrenpoint Town preserved their Premiership status after a penalty shoot-out in an action-packed match at Milltown last night.

After Mark Cooling, Grant Gardiner and Andy Hall missed for Bangor, Stephen Hughes converted the winning spot-kick to keep Barry Gray’s men in the Premiership for another season.

The game started off in the exact fashion Warrenpoint needed it to as they went on the attack straight from the kick off.

It took just 12 minutes for the hosts to open the scoring when Daniel Hughes found space down the left to cut the ball back to his brother Stephen.

His initial shot was parried by Gibbons but Conor McDonald was on hand to poke home from close range to bring the tie to life.

Barry Gray’s men peppered the Bangor goal in the early stages but some decent goalkeeping and a portion of luck meant they only had the one goal to show by the break.

Gibbons made the best save of the night with a quarter of an hour to go when John McGuigan got on the end of a Dermot McVeigh cross but his goalbound header was superbly pushed out by the keeper.

However, a minute later the sides were level in the tie when McVeigh rose to power home a header from Mark Hughes’ corner from the right to make it 2-0 on the night and 2-2 on aggregate.

Two minutes into the second period of extra time when Daniel Hughes dived in for a tackle and that led to a scuffle that eventually saw Bangor sub Eddie McCallion shown a second yellow card and subsequent red.

Hughes was then dismissed for a second yellow card of his own after showing dissent in the final minute of extra-time.

Warrenpoint: Parr, Cowan (Smith 82), McDonald, S Hughes, Boyle, McVeigh, Bagnall, M Hughes, D Hughes, Devlin (McGuigan 72), King (Moan H-T)

Subs not used: Smith, Frazer, Forsyth

Bangor: Gibbons, Youle, Pike (McCallion 55), Wray, Nixon, Walsh, Hall, Cooling, Morrow, Boylan (McDowell 41), Long

Subs not used: Melly, Gardiner, Chapman

Referee: Raymond Hetherington (Dungannon)