It was goals galore this weekend across the Intermediate leagues, with Bangor leading the way thanks to a 10-goal salvo at home to Donegal Celtic in the BPIL.
Evergreen Michael Halliday netted a hat trick, and his feat was matched by midfielder Jack Wasson. The scoring was completed by Mark Cooling, Ben Arthurs, Ben Roy & Ethan Boylan. This moved Bangor back into second place, 15 points behind the leaders, Glebe Rangers, but having played six games less than the reigning champions.
Meanwhile, Glebe kept their fine form up in the defence of the title with a comfortable 4-1 home win over Desertmartin. There were goals from Peter Kennoway (2), Lee Gault & Davy Reid. Also in the mix are St James Swifts, who sit in third place, a point behind Bangor having also played eight league games.
Elsewhere, lowly Ballynure OB picked up an impressive win travelling to Limavady and securing a 2-1 win over Newtowne. There were goals from Stevie Howe and Robert Watson. Dunloy also got back to winning ways with a fine 2-1 home win over Ballymoney Utd. Meanwhile, Coagh United travelled to Ballymena and saw off their hosts Wakehurst 2-1, thanks to goals from Danny McKinless and Stefan Thompson.
The final game of the day in the BPIL was a derby battle at the Mid Ulster Sports Arena 3G. The hosts, Cookstown Youth secured local bragging rights over the bottom side thanks to goals from Conor Rafferty, James McGahan and an OG.
On to the NAFL now, and Immaculata remain in the driving seat following their 1-0 win at Derriaghy CC. Shankill United remain close behind thanks to a thumping 4-1 win away at Islandmagee, while third-placed East Belfast secured a heavy win of their own. This one coming thanks to a 5-1 home win over Ards Rangers. Just six points separate this top three, with the Mac having played more games than the teams in hot pursuit.
All three sides will be looking over their shoulder, however, as reigning champions, Crumlin Star were back in league action this weekend. They eased to a 2-1 home win over 1st Bangor OB in their first game at their new home base at ‘The Cricky’, Cliftonville Playing Fields. Following six years playing at the Cliff in Larne, the Star have now secured a base in their local area as they look to continue to build the club.
Back-to-back Premier Division champions, the second of which topped off an incredible treble last season. The Star have lost one game all season and that came after a penalty shoot-out defeat in the semi-final of the Steel & Sons Cup to Sirocco Works. They have a Border Cup Final to look forward to over the Christmas break, while they are still competing in the Irish Cup, Clarence Cup & Intermediate Cup. The Star have played only five league games due to their heavy involvement in the various cup competitions, but with five wins from five, they are well placed to add to their already bulging trophy cabinet.
Elsewhere, Rathfriland romped to an 8-0 win over bottom side Downpatrick, while Ballynahinch Olympic secured a 3-1 home win over Albert Foundry. In the final game of the day, Drumaness Mills enjoyed a 3-0 home win over Crumlin United at Meadowvale.
In Mid Ulster, leaders Hanover were in Premier Cup action, and second-placed Moneyslane failed to take advantage. They slipped to a 1-0 home defeat to Valley Rangers. With Crewe United also in Premier Cup action, Banbridge Rangers took the chance to leapfrog them in the table thanks to a 10-0 win away at rock bottom AFC Silverwood. Rangers then had the chance to jump into second place on Tuesday night, but instead fell to their first defeat of the season, losing 3-1 away to Valley Rangers.
There were two high scoring draws. Fivemiletown United drawing 3-3 at home to Windmill Star, while Tandragee Rovers hosted Ballymacash Rangers and they shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw. In the final league game of the day, Laurelvale fell to a 1-0 home defeat to Bourneview Mill.
Meanwhile, those Premier Cup semi-finals have served up something of a shock. While Hanover saw off nearby St Marys 3-0 at Brownstown Park, Richhill AFC secured a shock but fully deserved 2-0 home win over high flying Crewe United. Gareth Rees and David Ross scored the goals that secured Marty Rice’s men a place in the final.
Finally, we move into the North West and the NI Intermediate league. Leaders and reigning champions, Magherafelt Sky Blues’ home game vs Dungiven was abandoned. The hosts were leading the contest 2-0 when an injury to the referee forced an abandonment of the game.
Second-placed Newbuildings Utd failed to capitalise though, falling to a 3-1 home defeat to Strabane Athletic. Maiden City also picked up a 3-1 away win, this one coming at Vaughans Holm vs Ardstraw. In the final game of the day, bottom side Oxford Utd Stars picked up their first points of the season following their 0-0 draw at home to near neighbours Trojans.
Ballymena & Provincial Intermediate League
Bangor FC 10-1 Donegal Celtic
Cookstown Youth 3-0 Cookstown RBL
Dunloy FC 2-1 Ballymoney Utd
Glebe Rangers 4-1 Desertmartin
Newtowne 1-2 Ballynure OB
Wakehurst FC 1-2 Coagh United
|3||St James Swifts||8||7||0||1||41||8||33||21|
Northern Amateur Football League Premier Division
East Belfast 5-1 Ards Rangers
Crumlin Star 2-1 1st Bangor Old Boys
Rathfriland Rangers 8-0 Downpatrick F.C.
Ballynahinch Olympic 3-1 Albert Foundry F.C.
Derriaghy C C 0-1 Immaculata F.C.
Islandmagee 1-4 Shankill United
Drumaness Mills 3-0 Crumlin United
|5||1st Bangor Old Boys||13||5||2||6||29||20||9||17|
|11||Albert Foundry F.C.||13||2||5||6||20||27||-7||11|
|13||Derriaghy C C||12||2||2||8||11||33||-22||8|
Mid Ulster Intermediate A
AFC Silverwood 0 – 10 Banbridge Rangers
Fivemiletown United 3 – 3 Windmill Stars
Laurelvale 0 – 1 Bourneview Mill
Moneyslane 0 – 1 Valley Rangers
Tandragee Rovers 2 – 2 Ballymacash Rangers
Valley Rangers 3 – 1 Banbridge Rangers
NI Intermediate League
Ardstraw 1-3 Maiden City
Newbuildings Utd 1-3 Strabane Athletic
Oxford United Stars 0-0 Trojans
|1||Magherafelt Sky Blues||6||5||0||1||19||7||12||15|
|8||Oxford United Stars||6||0||1||5||2||15||-13||1|