With one win in our opening 10 matches, including a 5-0 defeat to Portadown, achieving a top 6 position in the Bluefin Sport Championship seemed a pipe dream. However full credit must go to Harry McConkey, his staff and players, as a run of form which seen 8 wins from 11 sees us sneak into the top 6 and we now have an opportunity to make the promotion playoffs.
In truth Saturday's performance wasn't a vintage one, but all that matters was that we got the three points we needed.
Nathan Cashel scored the only goal of the game after 3 minutes, nipping in ahead of outcoming goalkeeper Jack Hazard to re-direct the ball into the net.
Robbie Hume could have extended that advantage in the first half when put through on goal by Ross Taheny, but this time Hazard stop firm. His opposite number John Connolly had a relatively quiet afternoon, but he was called into action to dive low to his right and tip a Gary Brown shot around the post before the 20 minute mark.
The Mallards struggled to impose themselves on the game and Ballyclare enjoyed plenty of possession without any major threat, but it did make for uncomfortable viewing!
Ryan Campbell had our best two chances in the early stages of the second period, but a combination of the post and some covering defending left him frustrated. The home side defended resolutely however and held out to claim the win.