Warner Mullen hit the ground running on his return from holiday fun in Australia with a two-goal weekend double just hours after landing home.
The forward had his sparkling form in club colours disrupted by a recent trip Down Under but Mullen was back on the teamsheet and back on the scoresheet on Saturday against Harland and Wolff Welders.
Mullen’s brace may not have been able to wrap up full points for the Villagers but the 2-2 draw marked a positive outcome in the aftermath of three successive defeats.
Loughgall picked up just three points from four games in Mullen’s absence across the March fixture list.
The Villagers’ hopes of a boost from Mullen’s comeback appearance suffered a setback on 51 minutes with a red card.
Play proved tight across the first half but a second bookable offence left Loughgall without Gary Henderson.
However, the hosts regrouped and grabbed the first goal of the afternoon moments later thanks to Jamie Rea’s slick play.
Rea managed to capitalise on a mistake by the Welders goalkeeper, with his effort from a tight angle bouncing off the post and presenting Mullen with a simple close-range finish.
Welders’ problems continued with a red card but the high-flying city outfit left it level thanks to a penalty kick on 69 minutes.
Loughgall’s response featured a second goal thanks to a foul on Daniel Ryan and decisive Mullen spot-kick.
The final goal prevented Loughgall from claiming full points as a deflection steered a speculative shot beyond goalkeeper Gareth Buchanan.
Loughgall will welcome Armagh City to Lakeview Park on Tuesday from 7.45.
LOUGHGALL: Gareth Buchanan, Mark Carson, Nicky Hudson, Graeme Taylor, Paul Stretton, Gary Henderson, Steven Ferguson, Jamie Rea, Marcus Dallas, Warner Mullen, Daniel Ryan. Subs: Mark Dane, Andrew Drylie, Gareth Henderson,
Loughgall’s MUFL Reserve Championship campaign featured a scoreless draw with Newry City AFC before success against Valley Rangers.
Joseph O’Connor’s brace and a Keith Kearney goal wrapped up the 3-1 defeat of Valley Rangers.
Loughgall Youth under 13s lost out against Carrick.
Ben Gibbons and Bobby McKinney were named the leading players.
LOUGHGALL YOUTH: Jamie Berry, Ben Gibbons, James Ballantine, Jamie Marsh, Bobby McKinney, Andrew Bond, Adam Neill, Stuart Emerson, Peter Spence, Chris Lindsay, Sam Kerr, Cormac McAlinden, Jacob Richardson.