After Ballywooley was unplayable due to flooded pitch we headed to the rearranged venue at Bangor Sportsplex for a 9.30am kick off. The rain still coming down it wasn't looking good but the Referee deemed the pitch playable.
We new a win today would secure a semi final place but the boys new they needed to step it up a gear as the last two matches they were not at their best.
They started the game with purpose and intension and were playing some great football as the set about getting that semi final spot. The pitch was not in great condition but the boys were in no mood to let that bother them and after 22 minutes of probing and pressure we got the breakthrough via the penalty spot, Ryan Hannah controlled the ball inside the Bryansburn box turned the defender who then brought him down and the Referee pointed to the spot, up stepped Captain Reece Atkinson looking to continue his 100% record from the spot and that he did placing it well away from the keeper; 0:1 Ards. Then five minutes from half time we double our lead when Stuart Hannah nicked the ball off the Bryansburn defender squared it to Travis Jamison who smashed a thunderous shot from 20 yards into the net; 0:2 Ards.
HALF TIME; 0 : 2
simple instructions at half time was keep playing together and there is a least another five goals there in the second half.
We stared pressing right from the off and there was no doubt there is more goals in this match. Joel Hill replaced Noah Crenshaw in the 50th minute and a minute later Reece grabbed his second goal of the match, again from the spot after Travis's driving shot was stopped by the hand of the Bryansburn Defender, Reece again coolly put the penalty into the back of the net(his 9th goal from the spot); 0:3 Ards. Matthew Guest came on for Stuart Hannah which meant a reshuffle in defence with Edward Muldrew & Matthew Guest being the centre pair, Brandon McFerran remaining at Right back, Jordan Barkley moved out to his favoured position of left back, giving Jordan Mulholland the opertunity to have a run out on the left wing. Four minutes after getting his second goal Reece Atkinson grabbed his hat-trick, When Ryan Hannah found him inside the box with a crisp pass and Reece made no mistake and thumped the ball past the keeper; 0:4 Ards. The boys were now in total control of the match but we were force in to a change when Jordan Mulholland and the Bryansburn keeper collided and both players were unable to continue, so Ryan McKittrick came on for Jordan, Bryansburn replaced their keeper but were unfortunate not to have any subs and had the play the remainder of the match with 10 men. We then went to a back three of Brandon, Matthew & Jordan B, pushing Edward Muldrew in to his favoured position of Centre midfield, sending Jack Patterson up front to partner Joel. Curtis Higgins came on to replace man of the match Travis Jamison who had worked his socks off and deserved the rest. Seven minutes later and Joel got a goal, again Ryan Hannah was the provider from the right wing sending the ball into the box Joel slid in as the keeper came sliding out and he got there first and poked the ball past the keeper into the net; 0:5 Ards. A minute later and Joel got his second of the match, Hat-Trick man, Reece Atkinson became provider finding Joel just inside the box which he hit first time leaving the keeper stranded; 0:6 Ards. We got a seventh goal right on the stroke of full time, Curtis Higgins flicked the ball into the box that was controlled perfectly by Ryan McKittrick and on the half volley sent the ball flying into the back of the net; 0:7 Ards.
FULL TIME; 0:7
Boys were back playing the good football we knew they are capable off, we hadn't see in the last two matches. Well done everyone you all played your part today and gained your place in the semi finals with one match to spare. A free week next week will give us the ideal break to prepare for the last group game of the season against our Ards rivals, Ards Rangers. So we need another performance like today in the Derby game.
17 goal and only 1 conceded in three group matches is a very good work rate boys, keep it going. RABA
Coach Robbie McGarry:
Well done to Ards Fc U16s on another 3points and a clean sheet winning this morning against Bryansburn U16s