PORTS TV: Portadown 3 Ballymena United 4

Marcio Soares (left) found the net for Portadown against Ballymena United on New Year's Day. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Marcio Soares (left) found the net for Portadown against Ballymena United on New Year's Day. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Portadown kicked off 2016 with defeat at Shamrock Park on New Year’s Day to Ballymena United.

The seven-goal thriller finished with Danske Bank Premiership points to the visitors on a 4-3 scoreline.

Ballymena took the lead thanks to Allan Jenkins before Marcio Soares levelled the match and Garry Breen handed the hosts second-half control.

Stephen McBride’s first goal for Ballymena made it 2-2 then Sean Mackle burst forward to put Portadown back on top.

However, the closing stages featured a David Cushley drive and superb finish into the top corner by Jenkins to settle the fixture.

PORTADOWN: David Miskelly, Chris Casement, Ross Redman, Keith O’Hara, Garry Breen, Sean Mackle, Darren Murray, Mark McAllister, Marcio Soares, Matthew Parker, Robert Garrett. Subs: Billy Brennan, Jordan Lyttle, Mark Carson, Padraig Judge (on for Soares, 62 mins), Christian Stewart.

BALLYMENA UNITED: Alan Blayney, Jim Ervin, Johnny Taylor, Gareth Rodger, Stephen McBride, Anthony Kane, Gary Thompson, Eoin Kane, Stewart Nixon, Allan Jenkins, David Cushley. Subs: Paddy McNally, Darren Henderson, Matthew Shevlin (on for Nixon, 62 mins), Matthew Ferguson (on for E.Kane, 79 mins), Nathan Hanley.

Referee: Raymond Hetherington.