Dowds delivers a double as Bann are held

Stevie Dowds found the net twice on Saturday. Pic: Presseye
Stevie Dowds found the net twice on Saturday. Pic: Presseye
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Banbridge’s penalty corners are starting to improve.

That’s much to the relief of their coach Mark Tumilty, who watched Stevie Dowds dispatch two well taken strikes to secure a 2-2 draw with Pembroke on Saturday.

The boss has recently bemoaned his team’s inability to convert penalty corners and it took an improvement on Saturday’s to prevent a defeat.

After Dowds but Bann ahead, they had fallen behind and had to pull their goalkeeper in order to seal a last gasp equaliser.

“It was a strange game,” said Tumilty. “It just didn’t ever seem to get going.

“Stevie scored two very good corners which was absolutely brilliant.

“That was the huge positive for us We’ve focused on those in training over the past few weeks and the improvement is definitely starting to show.

“I thought we were unlucky a couple of times against Monkstown and then we scored two from four on Saturday.

“After we went one up, we slacked off and let them back into it. To be fair, we went on to boss the third and fourth quarters but the problem was we got caugbht on the break again. That’s been a problem this season and it meant we had to pull the keeper to get the equaliser.

Bann began brightly and Dowds delivered the opener in the first period from a well taken corner.

However, Pembroke hit back in the second when Alan Sothern took advantage of a back stick in the area and converted the visitors’ first penalty corner.

Stand-in stopper Peter Bingham amade a save to keep Bann level but there was little he could do to stop Sothern’s second in the third quarter.

He did well to beat a defender and shoot past the keeper from the edge of the area after a swift break.

That wasn’t enough to secure all three points though, as Dowds scored a 58th minute equaliser.

Tumilty said: “Stevie has moved into full-time work so that has changed things but it was great for him to score a couple.”