Soccer: Boyce returns to haunt Swifts

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Darren Boyce returned to haunt his former side as Ballymena United edged an action-packed game against Dungannon Swifts.

The striker hit a 73rd minute winner to settle a pulsating match at a rain-lashed Stangmore Park.

Boyce scored 12 goals during a successful five-month spell at Dungannon, before signing for the Sky Blues earlier this month.

And, after netting a late equaliser in the Irish Cup at the weekend, he opened his league account with a sublime winner.

The home side took the lead after seven minutes.

Gary Liggett, starting against his old club, drew a foul on the left side of the box and Jamie Tomelty drilled a low free-kick into the far corner.

However, Ballymena responded positively and one attack ended with a succession of efforts on the home goal, Gary Thompson and David Cushley among the players denied.

They levelled in the 22nd minute via another new signing Jim Ervin who made a neat turn before firing past the goalkeeper from close range.

Ballymena took the lead when Cushley threaded the ball across the box for Allan Jenkins, who turned the ball home.

Dungannon levelled nine minutes into the second period. From a corner Tomelty picked out Liggett, whose header ricocheted home via the crossbar.

Ballymena’s Johnny Taylor went close before a clever pass from Cushley found Boyce who curled a sublime strike into the far corner.

Dungannon Swifts: Buchanan, Lowe, Brennan, McCaffrey, Grieve, Hutchinson, Fitzpatrick (S Lavery, 86), McCullough, Hazley (C Lavery, 77), Tomelty (Glackin, 65), Liggett. Subs not used: McMinn, Brolly

Ballymena: Lacroix, Ervin, Munster (McCullagh, 90), Taylor, Stewart, Thompson (Davidson, 76), Kane, Jenkins, Cushley, Boyce, Teggart. Subs not used: Surgenor, Lowry, McLellan