Forgrave thunderbolt seals victory for Portstewart at Newington YC

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Portstewart midfielder Lee Forgrave was the toast of his team mates on Saturday after his goal sealed a win over Newington at Seaview.

Taylor’s side have been struggling to find form of late, but Saturday’s win is a real boost to the side ahead of Saturday’s encounter with derby rivals Glebe Rangers.

Both defences were kept busy in the first half. John Neill won every aerial battle, whilst Dean Murray, Lee Forgrave and Ryan Doherty were superb in midfield.

The home side hit the upright on 23 minutes before Chris Hanson should have put the visitors 1-0 ahead. His fine strike went narrowly passed the post.

Portstewart started the second half determined to take something from the tie.

Their efforts paid off in the 55th minute after some great interplay, Ian Todd put Lee Forgrave through on goal, and he gave the home keeper no chance with a piledriver from 25 yards.

Gary Quinn, Ricky Dunlop and Markus Condren were introduced, and Condren should have doubled his sides lead after he beat the offside trap but his chip was just wide of the upright.

The final minutes of the game saw Newington battling for every ball in search of an equaliser, but the Ports held out for a well deserved win.

Ports boss Gary Taylor admitted it was ‘backs to the wall’ for his side in the dying minutes, but he was happy with the display of his side.

“They were a different team to the start of the season, they have signed a few players. But our boys were really up for the challenge.”

Taylor paid tribute to Lee Forgrave, Dean Murray, Markus Condren and Gary Quinn: “Lee’s strike was superb, he was brilliant in midfield alongside Ian Todd.

“Dean, Markus and Gary all came on for their first appearances this season.

“Markus was unlucky with a strike near the end, he’s a confident player and he fitted in very well.

“Dean has been out with a long term injury and he too did very well as did Gary Quinn when he came on.”

Portstewart entertain Glebe Rangers this Saturday, who have Peter Cairns back as manager: “I have no doubt that this will be a hard match.

“Peter had them playing well the last time he was there and they picked up a good win on Saturday.

“We have a few injury concerns but we’ll access them as the week goes on, and see how things go,” said Taylor.

Supporters: A bus will be put on for games against Annagh (February 8) and Armagh (March 1) contact Alistair 07599943878 for details.