Larne fall at quarter-final hurdle again

Mar 1, 2020 | Archive

Coleraine came out on top in the Irish Cup quarter-final for the second year in a row as they edged out Larne 3-2 in another exciting tie at Inver Park.

A Lyndon Kane own-goal put the hosts ahead at the break before James McLaughlin drew Coleraine level. Jeff Hughes’ header restored Larne’s lead but Stephen Lowry equalised with a penalty.

Bannsiders talisman Eoin Bradley found the winner three minutes from time to propel Coleraine to their fourth consecutive Irish Cup Semi Final.

Larne began very brightly with Marty Donnelly letting rip with a fierce effort 25 yards from goal after just 40 seconds but Chris Johns was equal to the effort.

It was Donnelly who almost opened the scoring four minutes later when after some good build up play on the inside left channel, Donnelly unleashed a first time effort that bounced off the crossbar.

On 25 minutes, Dean Jarvis collected Tomas Cosgrove’s cross before drilling a snapshot wide of the target.

On the half hour mark Donnelly’s corner, from the right flank, was flicked on by Harry Flowers with Jeff Hughes coming agonisingly close to converting at the back post.

The visitors had their first real effort of note through an Eoin Bradley’s 20-yard free-kick four minutes from the break, but Conor Devlin pulled off a very good save down to his right to deny him.

However the Invermen took the lead through an own-goal by Lyndon Kane a minute from the break after Donnelly floated in a free-kick from the right hand side and the full-back inadvertently headed the ball past Johns.

Nine minutes into the second period Coleraine were level. A long throw in from Adam Mullan was headed on by Bradley before James McLaughlin fired low into the bottom left to make it 1-1.

Less than 10 minutes after the Bannsiders drew level, Larne restored their lead after Donnelly whipped in a free-kick from the left and Hughes, completely unmarked at the back post, headed in to the net.

The game continued in an end-to-end fashion and, within six minutes, Coleraine had equalised yet again.

This time Stephen Lowry stepped up to stroke home from the spot after the referee adjudged that John Herron had handled the ball while going up for a header with Josh Carson. Although it was unclear whether the handball occurred inside the area or not.

In a neat move from Coleraine on 79 minutes, Kane exchanged passes with Bradley and the full back forced a superb stop from Devlin at his near post.

With just three minutes left, Bradley popped up and slotted the ball through Devlin’s legs at his near post to give Coleraine the winner and set up a semi-final meeting with Ballymena United.

Larne: C.  Devlin, H. Flowers, A. Watson, F. Sule (A. Mitchell 78) D. McDaid, M. Donnelly, L. Lynch, T. Cosgrove, J. Hughes (c), D. Jarvis, J. Herron

Unused Subs: C. Mitchell, G. Kelly, C. Ramsey, M. Randall, B. Tilney, P. Andrade

Coleraine: C. Johns, L. Kane, A. Mullan, A. Canning, S. Lowry, J. McLaughlin, J. Carson, S. O’Donnell (c), I. Parkhill (E. Bradley 36), J. Glackin, A. Traynor (A. Jarvis 45)

Unused Subs: M. Gallagher, S. Douglas, G. McConaghie, E. McGuckin, C. Allen

Referee: Shane Andrews

Larne are next in action in the Danske Bank Premiership on Saturday 7 March as they host seventh-placed Glenavon. Kick off at Inver Park is the later time of 5.30pm.

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