Portadown went back to the top of the Bluefin Sport Championship on Saturday with a draw against Queens University however it was to be a bitter sweet point for the Ports that took them back top as they failed to take all 3 points after surrendering a three goal lead to the Championship new boys.
Ports manager Matthew Tipton made three changes to his XI from that which beat Dergview last Saturday with Adam McCallum, Marty Bradley, Callum Ferris coming in for Paddy McNally, George Tipton and Ryan Carmichael.
Portadown’s first chance of the game came after 8 minutes when a low cross into the Queens box from Greg Hall found it’s way to Lee Bonis but his shot was blocked before Marty Bradley’s half volley from just outside the box was deflected wide for a corner.
Portadown were to take the lead after 14 minutes when a long free kick by Bobby Edwards was headed on by Lee Bonis to Callum Ferris who’s first time shot on the half volley from the edge of the area slipped through the goalkeepers grasp and into the net to put the Ports 1-0 up.
Queens University almost grabbed an equaliser 6 minutes later when Connor Mulholland’s low header from a corner forced Ports keeper Edwards into a great diving save low down at his near post to keep the ball out and keep the Ports lead in tact.
Portadown were to make it 2-0 on 22 minutes via Adam Salley when the bounce of the ball from a Luke Wilson cross into the box beat Queens defender Matthew McManus and Salley was on hand to rifle the ball into the net via the crossbar on the half volley from 12 yards out.
Ports almost made it 3 on 26 minutes when Lee Bonis picked the ball up from a Greg Hall throw in 30 yards from goal and went on a marauding run beating three Queens players in the process taking him clear into the box however his finish didn’t match his build up play as he curled the ball the wrong side of the Queens right hand post and into the side netting.
Queens finished the half with a chance to pull a goal back when Jonah Mitchell picked up the ball in the box before cutting in and getting a low shot away but it was straight at Ports keeper Edwards who saved before the rebound was blocked by the Ports defence.
BLUEFIN SPORT CHAMPIONSHIP HALF TIME – QUEEN UNIVERSITY 0 PORTADOWN 2
Portadown were to make it 3-0 on 50 minutes when a sliding Marty Bradley intercepted a Queens throw in on the half way line before finding Callum Ferris who found Lee Bonis on the right hand side with Bonis cutting the ball back to the incoming Stephen Teggart on the edge of the box who swept the ball home to grab his second goal of the season.
Ports were to lose centre back Adam McCallum during the third goal celebrations when he accidentally trod on the ball injuring his ankle in the process, Conall McGrandles came off the bench to slot into defence beside Paul Finnegan.
Queens were to pull a goal back just after the hour mark when a free kick into the Ports box by Marc McKenna inadvertently found it’s way into the top corner of the Portadown net via the knee of Ports defender Paul Finnegan and a minute later it was 3-2 when a low shot from the edge of the box by Jonah Mitchell was parried away by the diving Edwards with Ciaran O’Hare the quickest to react to put the rebound home.
Queens were to grab an unlikely equaliser on 83 minutes through a superb Ronan Young free kick from the edge of the box which he curled into the top right hand corner, an equaliser which just over 30 minutes earlier had looked unthinkable.
A disappointing last half hour for the young Ports but a point which took them back to the top of the Bluefin Sport Championship with basement club Knockbreda next up for Matthew Tipton’s men at Shamrock Park this Saturday (2 November) 3pm kick off.
BLUEFIN SPORT CHAMPIONSHIP RESULT – QUEENS UNIVERSITY 3 PORTADOWN 3
Queen’s University: Brown, Corry, Young, McManus, Calvert, Bonnes, Hughes, McKenna, Mulholland, Mitchell, Magee subs Lally, O’Hare, McIlroy, Drylie, Torrens
Portadown: Edwards, Hall, McCallum, Finnegan, Bradley, McKenna, Salley, Wilson, Ferris, Teggart, Bonis subs Crane, Duke, Glackin, McGrandles, Tipton