Gers sunk by last-minute strike from Sproule
Carrick’s lean spell continued at the weekend with a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat to lowly Dergview.
With just one point from the nine on offer over the Christmas and New Year period, Rangers have dropped to fifth spot in Championship 1. Rivals Larne, meanwhile, are just one point behind in sixth, but Gary Haveron’s men do have two games in hand.
News that Ards’ Ben Roy had put pen to paper with the Gers on Friday morning was tempered by the fact that Correy Davidson was moving in the opposite direction. However, the capture of last season’s Championship 1 top scorer had given sections of the Amber Army a boost ahead of the trip to Castlederg. But boy were the Carrick faithful brought back to earth with a bump at Darragh Park.
A scoreless first-half wasn’t entirely without its highlights with Carrick’s Richard Gibson together with Dergview’s Darren Higginbotham and Dale Maxwell going close before David Bell’s 25-yard effort was palmed away by Alan Buchanan.
Rangers began the second session brightly but just before the hour-mark Dergview opened the scoring when right-back Philip Wallace set Gareth Sproule clear to lift the ball over Gareth Deane.
Gibson was then denied by Buchanan after re-directing Ryan Burns’ initial effort.
Carrick looked to have set up a dramatic finish seven minutes from time when Ciaran Donaghy’s overhead kick found the bottom corner with the help of a Wallace deflection.
Agonisingly for those decked out in Amber, the home side had the final say deep into time added on when Andy Sproule raced through to score the crucial goal, beating Deane with a low shot from the edge of the 18-yard box.
Dergview: Buchanan, Wallace, Robinson, Liggett, Maxwell, Clarke, A. Sproule, Lecky, Dickson, G. Sproule (Campbell 79), Higginbotham (Arkinson 71) Subs not used: Boggs, Kee, Porter.
Carrick: Deane, McCloskey, O’Kane, Donaghy, Lagan, McCann, Harmon, Roy, Burns, Gibson, Bell (Smyth 72). Subs not used: Kelly, Curran, Taggart, West.