Published Saturday, 12 April 2014
Warrenpoint defeated Dungannon Swifts 4-0 on Saturday. (© Presseye)
A goalless draw with Ballinamallard had left Ards teetering on the brink of relegation, with their hopes of continued survival resting on Warrenpoint's game at Stangmore Park.
However that game quickly went the way of Barry Gray's side, with Stephen Hughes opening the scoring with a strike from outside the area after just eight minutes.
Warrenpoint dominated the play, and a well-worked team move led to Marty Havern steering the ball past Berat Turker in the 27th minute to put his side 2-0 ahead, before Daniel Hughes added a third six minutes later.
It was more of the same in the second half and the visitors completed the rout when Havern played in Stephen Moan for Warrenpoint's fourth goal.
The result means that Ards are now 10 points behind Warrenpoint with just nine points left to play for - their only possibility of avoiding the drop now depends on whether the team who clinches the Championship title applies for the necessary licence to play in the top flight.
Elsewhere on Saturday it was as-you-were at the top of the table with wins for both leaders Cliftonville and second-placed Linfield.
In the game at Solitude Tommy Breslin's side were 2-0 winners over Glentoran, with the game decided by two strikes of pure quality.
First Chris Curran curled a wonderful effort past Elliot Morris for the opening goal in the 57th minute before Joe Gormley got in on the act, claiming his 36th goal of the season with a fiercely-struck shot shortly after the Glens had been reduced to ten men.
Johnny Addis was the player to receive his marching orders for a second yellow card.
Linfield meanwhile endured a rollercoaster Belfast derby against Crusaders at Seaview - a game which contained five goals and two red cards.
Nathan Hanley took just five minutes to fire the hosts into the lead, but the Blues were soon on top with Aaron Burns netting the equaliser nine minutes later and Andrew Waterworth putting them in front four minutes before the break.
Crusaders' first-half misery was compounded when Paul Heatley kicked out at Michael Gault, giving the referee no option but to show him a straight red card.
Stephen Baxter's side also had a Colin Coates goal disallowed after the defender was adjudged to have fouled an opponent before finding the net with a bullet header.
The hosts got some joy when Timmy Adamson brought it back to 2-2 with a goal in the 67th minute, but Waterworth had the final say with a goal in the in the 73rd minute to seal a 3-2 victory for David Jeffrey's side.
Crusaders' misery was not complete though, as they were reduced to nine men before the final whistle when Chris Morrow was given a straight red for a horror challenge on Phillip Lowry eight minutes from time.
Elsewhere on Saturday Portadown claimed bragging rights over derby rivals Glenavon with a 3-0 victory over the Lurgan Blues at Shamrock Park.
Emmet Friars' firm header in the fourth minute gave Ronnie McFall's side the lead, before Chris Casement curled in a long-range effort four minutes into the second half.
Casement sealed the win in the 80th minute when he volleyed home after a Gary Twigg knockdown to make it 3-0.
Finally on Saturday Ballymena United played out a 1-1 draw with local rivals Coleraine, with both goals coming from the penalty spot.
Eoin Bradley converted the first for the Bannsiders in the 35th minute after winning the penalty when he was fouled by Michael Ruddy inside the area.
Ballymena waited until the 90th minute before getting on terms - Allan Teggart steered the spot-kick past Wayne Drummond after Howard Beverland was adjudged to have handled inside the penalty box.
Saturday's Danske Bank Premiership results:
Cliftonville 2-0 Glentoran
Coleraine 1-1 Ballymena Utd
Crusaders 2-3 Linfield
Dungannon Swifts 0-4 Warrenpoint Town
Portadown 3-0 Glenavon
© UTV News