It wasn’t the result Portstewart were hoping for as they returned to League action on Saturday.
Banbridge were the visitors and with a heavy pitch and driving rain it took both sides a little time to settle into the tie.
However it was the visitors who took the spoils on the day, walking away with a 3-1 victory.
Portstewart had an early chance when Dysart found Doherty, however his snap shot went wide of Tuda Murphy’s post.
Chris Kingsberry and the influential Stuart King combined well for Banbridge, but a last ditch tackle from Portstewart’s Millar prevented a certain goal after 22 minutes.
Portstewart’s best effort came just before the half-time whistle when a superbly hit free kick from defender John Neill looked bound for the top corner until Murphy went full length to touch the ball over the bar.
Banbridge piled on the pressure in the second spell, but a fine save from Maddison denied King in the opening minutes.
Banbridge had a goal disallowed when McGrath hit home, but the home side soon found themselves 1-0 in front, when Doherty stepped up to the spot, following a hand ball from a Banbridge defender.
Portstewart seemed to take their foot off the gas after this, and Banbridge pushed forward at every opportunity.
This paid off on 67 minutes when King scored from a free kick. King hit home again ten minutes later putting the visitors well in front.
Substitute Smith, a new signing for the visitors, had the dream debut when he scored with his first touch, giving the visitors three valuable points.
Ports boss Gary Taylor described the game as a ‘very bad defeat’ he admitted that the performance was the worst his side had played since back in September.
“Our passing wasn’t good and we just had a lack of concentration,” said Taylor. “We must do better this week. In a way I wish it was a league game so we can get that defeat out of our minds,” he said.
Portstewart welcome Mid Ulster League side Windmill Stars in the Intermediate Cup. The Cup game has a 1.30 kick off.
It is hoped that new signing Garret Quinn, a former Coleraine Reserves player, will be available for Saturday.
Garret is a welcome boost to Taylor’s side.