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Knockbreda 1-2 Ballinamallard

With November turning out to be a successful month for the Mallards, they were looking to start off December on a positive note, and they did so with a well deserved away win.

Having enjoyed plenty of first half possession, Harry McConkey's men couldn't quite find the accuracy required in the final third, with Campbell and McIlwaine going closest. John Connolly also produced a good save low to his right on the slick surface to leave the game scoreless at half time.

Knockbreda perhaps started the second half the brighter side but seemed toothless in attack with the Mallards defence standing firm.

Somebody needed to step up and make the difference between the sides and that man was young Darragh McBrien. With 20 minutes remaining he took the game by the scruff of the neck, scoring and creating each Mallard goal.

Having just come back onto the pitch from a blood injury, the pacy winger was scythed down on the edge of the penalty area with the Knockbreda defender lucky to escape with just a yellow card. McBrien showed great character however to pick himself up and fire in the resulting free kick - much to his and his team mates delight!

Joshua McIlwaine almost made it two nil moments later when he chipped the goalkeeper, but he managed to scramble back and make a good recovery save.

The second duly arrived 5 minutes from time; Ross Taheny showed great skill to beat his marker and then played a fine cross field ball. McBrien had plenty of ground to make up but he nipped in ahead of the first defender, jinked inside the second and drew the foul to win a penalty. Captain Richard Clarke stepped up and sent the goalkeeper the wrong way and the Mallards seemed set for victory.

However on 92 minutes the home side scored a goal with some neat individual play which set up a nervy finish, but the Ducks ground out the victory and took a welcome 3 points!

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