BetMcLean Cup: Quarter-Final

Coleraine 2 - 3 Glenavon
05 Dec 2023 - 19:45The Showgrounds

COLERAINE were knocked out of the BetMcLean Cup at the quarter-final stage as they lost 3-2 at home to Glenavon…

By: Charlie Cooke

Ahead of the second fixture between the two teams in three days, Bannsiders boss Oran Kearney made one from change from Saturday’s 1-1 draw against the Lurgan Blues as Jake Wallace returned to the defence at the expense of Senan Devine.

With three minutes on the clock, Dean Jarvis found David McDaid with a lovely little through ball from just out the penalty area. The striker chested the ball down and hit a strike towards goal that went inches by the far post.

After a rather dull opening half hour, the was sparked into life as Glenavon made it 1-0 after Tiernan Mulvenna played an accurate ball from deep that eluded the Bannsiders defence and Jack Malone was sent through on goal. The midfielder had too much time to take a first touch before slotting the ball into the top corner.

However, just two minutes later, Dean Jarvis provided the instant response for the Bannsiders to equalise. Coleraine were awarded a free kick from 30 yards out; a dangerous ball was played into the box as Graham Kelly got a flick on the ball before it landed at Dean’s feet, and he made no mistake as he placed the into the bottom left corner from six yards out.

Three minutes later, after a corner-kick was taken quickly, the ball landed at Conor McKendry’s feet just outside the box but his shot was comfortably caught by Rory Brown in the Glenavon goals.

The Lurgan Blues will feel they should have regained their lead on 37 minutes as Peter Campbell was afforded too much on the right-hand side and his cut-back found Aaron Prendergast in acres of space but he drilled over the crossbar.

On the stroke of half-time, the duo would combine yet again but with a devastating outcome to give Glenavon a 2-1 lead. The lively Campbell charged into the penalty area and his shot was diverted into the net by Prendergast.

Three minutes after the restart, Aaron Jarvis would have a sight of goal but his long-range effort failed to clear the crossbar, before a quick corner-kick resulted in McKendry’s goal bound effort being cleared off the line by Matthew Snoddy.

After the hour mark, McKendry would go close again but his strike from 25 yards just went the wrong side of the near post.

Oran Kearney decided to bring on Jack O’Mahony, Ciaran O’Hara and Lee Harkin, and the first two combined as O’Hara’s cross found O’Mahony at the edge of the box but his crisp drive was comfortably gathered by Brown.

However, in-form Glenavon would make it 3-1 following a devastating counter attack on 88 minutes. A loose pass allowed Campbell to pick out the run of substitute Cohen Henderson and he did the rest by coolly dispatching past Deane.

Coleraine did set-up a grandstand finish as McKendry’s cross inadvertently looped over Brown and into the net for 3-2, with O’Hara’s near post drive being kept out soon after as the game entered five additional minutes.

Sadly, it wasn’t to be as the Stripes’ hopes of reaching four consecutive finals in the competition ended.

COLERAINE: Deane, Kane, D. Jarvis, Kelly, A. Jarvis (O’Mahony ’84 mins), McKendry, McDaid (Harkin ’84 mins), Farren, Lynch, Glackin, Wallace (O’Hara ’76 mins).

Subs Not Used: Gallagher (GK), Cole, Devine, Gaston.

GLENAVON: Brown, Kerr, Birney (Teggart ’71 mins), Snoddy, Malone, Campbell, Baird, McCloskey (McDonagh ’90 mins), Prendergast (Henderson ’76 mins), Mulvenna, Garrett.

Subs Not Used: Purvis (GK), Shiel, Mooney.

Referee: Christopher Morrison