Memorial prize the reward from league defeat of Ards

Portadown captain James Carlton collects the Raymond Long Cup from Dorothy Long following a weekend win against Ards. The trophy was introduced in memory of the former Portadown captain and Ards president.
Portadown captain James Carlton collects the Raymond Long Cup from Dorothy Long following a weekend win against Ards. The trophy was introduced in memory of the former Portadown captain and Ards president.

Portadown posted a 27-21 success at the expense of Ards on Saturday in Qualifying League One.

Past Senior League fixtures between the clubs produced some thrilling moments and Portadown added to the record of wins with a bonus-point success.

An off-the-field bonus arrived with the presentation of the Raymond Long Cup to Portadown following the final whistle.

The trophy was introduced in memory of the former Portadown captain and Ards president for fixtures between the clubs.

Gareth McCoy’s try put Portadown in control before Andrew Chambers raced clear to cross the line, with Chris Cousens posting the conversion.

Portadown conceded penalties to sit with a slender 10-9 lead at half-time.

A strong second-half display by the Portadown backs proved key to victory.

Willie Graham added the next Portadown try but Ards turned the tables for a lead of 18-17.

However, Portadown tactical changes helped to restore control for Richard Hedley’s men towards the return of five league points, with Cousens increasing his points return before the final whistle.

Portadown fourths finished down by 22-8 from the weekend visit to PSNI seconds.

It proved a positive performance which failed to translate into points on the scoreboard.

Ryan McCullough crossed the line for Portadown’s sole try, with additional points arriving off a Stan Hamilton penalty.

Johnny McAfee, Hamilton, Mark Adamson, Andrew Laverty, Simon Adams and Jamie Matthews proved central to Portadown’s positive play.

The loss of Adamson to injury forced a reshuffle which helped PSNI gain second-half control from a 3-3 tally at the break.