DAVID Scullion’s late goal saw Larne leave Darragh Park with a share of the spoils against the league’s bottom side.
It was result of mixed emotions for Tiernan Lynch’s men, as they trailed for much of the game before drawing level with eight minutes to go. With the number of chances they created, the Invermen will have been disappointed not to claim the win, but in the end a draw was enough to extend their lead at the top to 14 points.
Ivan Sproule’s men went into the game looking for the first point under his management, but started brightly and took the lead with 14 minutes gone.
A mix-up in the Larne defence saw Conor Devlin having to rush out to block an initial effort, only for Paul Smyth to pick up the loose ball and calmly slot home from just inside the box.
Defender Dale Maxwell might have doubled the home side’s lead, but couldn’t steer home at full stretch from a corner midway through the first half.
Marty Donnelly almost dragged the home side level, ghosting past two defenders after cutting in from the right and curling inches wide.
Larne were much brighter in the second half, taking the game to their opponents and their cause looked to have been helped with home defender Matthew Callaghan was sent off for a second bookable offence, in an off the ball altercation with Jeff Hughes.
Despite creating a number of openings, it took until the 82nd minute to draw level when substitute David Scullion finished from 10 yards out after a long ball from Conor Devlin.
Elation very nearly turned to despair when Andrew Sproule almost helped Dergview retake the lead instantly from the kick-off, only to end a mazy run with a shot narrowly past the base of the post.
After this Scullion almost doubled his tally for the season, but saw his half volley drop agonisingly wide of the post.
Jeff Hughes then had a close range effort drift similarly wide as Larne had to settle for a point, which in the end extended their lead at the top.
Larne: Devlin, Sule, Ramsey, McEleney, McDaid (Kelly), Donnelly, Tilney (Stuart), Hassin (Scullion), McNally, Cosgrove, Hughes
Unused subs: Doughterty, Henry