Irish Premiership: Glentoran 1-1 Ballymena Utd

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Knowles scores a second-half equaliser as Glentoran and Ballymena draw 1-1 at the Oval.

James Knowles fired home a second-half equaliser to earn Glentoran a draw with the Sky Blues at a blustery Oval.

Cathair Friel's penalty gave the visitors an early lead and Glens keeper Elliott Morris made a vital save to deny Conor McCloskey before the break.

Glentoran improved on the restart and Knowles slotted in after good work from substitute Dylan Davidson.

Curtis Allen wasted a good late chance for the hosts, who stay sixth while the Sky Blues remain eighth.

It was a fair outcome to a mid-table encounter with both sides squandering opportunities to increase their tally.

Friel calmly converted a 15th-minute spot-kick after Marcus Kane clipped the heels of Gary Thompson.

Morris rescues Glens

Allen saw two efforts defected wide before McMurray sent McCloskey clear, but Morris sprinted out to block at the midfielder's feet.

Glens boss Gary Haveron introduced Davidson for the second half and it proved a wise move with the winger creating the leveller on 55 minutes.

A powerful run and cross from the left was a parried out by keeper Ross Glendinning and Knowles was perfectly placed to blast in from eight yards.

Glentoran defender Tre Sterling battles for the ball with United midfielder Gary Thompson in the Oval draw
Glentoran defender Tre Sterling battles for the ball with United midfielder Gary Thompson in the Oval draw

It was a first home goal for Haveron's side in four league matches.

Elliott produced a superb save to keep out Friel's fierce strike before Allen lifted the ball over the bar after going clear on the Sky Blues goal.

Allen went down as he moved past Glendinning with a minute left and the striker was booked for simulation.