Lyndon Kane says scoring in an Irish Cup final for his home town team was one of the best moments of his career.
The defender broke the deadlock against Larne six minutes after the restart with a long range effort.
It was a special moment for Kane who missed a large part of this season with a broken foot.
“I could only have dreamt about that happening to be honest,” he said after the game.
“The seven months I was injured was very tough, it was gruelling.
“Now that I’m back I feel that I’m making up for lost time.
“I’d be happy for anyone to score in a semi final to get us to an Irish Cup final, but for me to get it with all my family there watching on meant so much.
“Representing your country is always very special, but the one dream of my career growing up was to play for Coleraine, so I’d say that wasn’t far off being the best moment of my career.
“It was a switch of play, Josh pulled wide and took the wing back out of position, Marty Donnelly closed me down, but I knew he was over committed and if I took my touch I could drive forward.
“I didn’t even look up to see where the keeper was at, I just hit it.
“I can’t even remember what the goal was like, it was one of those moments when I knew I had scored but the next thing I was over celebrating with the fans.”
It has been an incredible journey for Kane, who is set to make his 100th appearance for the club in Tuesday night’s crunch League game at Crusaders.
“Oran showed a lot of faith in us when we were 17-18, and that plan is all coming together now,” said Kane.
“For all of us still to be playing now and adding the quality players we have, we have the basis of a great team here.
“Hopefully we can do big things together.
“We’re all just riding on the crest of the wave at the minute.
“It’s a dream come true for me to watch all this unfold,
“A lot of people may be surprised, but the way we finished last season and carried that on into pre-season and the European games, we always knew we had something special in the changing room.
“Oran made some great signings over the summer.
“If someone had said at the start of the season we would be where we are now though I don’t think we would have believed them.
“We’re enjoying every moment of it.”
That sentiment was echoed by his boss Oran Kearney, who is loving seeing his talented squad challenging for honours.
“I’m at Coleraine seven or eight years now and I spent the first five years coming to semi finals and longing to bring the club to it, or longing to be involved in the big game in the title race,” he said.
“Thankfully in the last 12 months we’ve had two semi finals which we’ve won, and now we roll into Tuesday night for what is one of the biggest games of the season.
“I’m just delighted this season that we’re in it, because if I wasn’t I might have taken the night off training to go and watch it because I love the game here so much.
“I’m just selfish, I love that we’re involved in it and I want to go and have a really good rattle at it.
“A couple of years ago we had reached semi finals, but we struggled to get past that.
“There’s been a few turning points along the way, one of them was beating Glenavon here in last year’s semi final. We spoke about that before today’s game and the memories of the celebrations afterwards.
“I was glad our fans were over there again because even when we play derby games here we have a lot of really good memories of going and celebrating with the fans.
“I said to the lads that we had to make sure we were doing the same after the final whistle today.
“We have congratulated the boys there, but we have shelved Cliftonville for a few weeks because it’s important now that we rest and recover for the next big game.
“When the day comes around it will be a cracking match I’m sure.”