COLERAINE 2 CARRICK RANGERS 1
Coleraine made it 10 games unbeaten as they saw off Carrick Rangers 2-1.
Goals from Lyndon Kane and Jamie McGonigle put the Bannsiders in control in the second half.
But Gary Haveron’s side kept going and almost snatched something from the game after Andrew Harmon had pulled a goal back with nine minutes to go.
Coleraine started the game in confident fashion immediately causing problems for the visitors.
Neil McCafferty’s free kick on three minutes was almost deflected into his own net by Andrew Doyle. Thankfully for him it dropped wide of the post with Brian Neeson wrong footed.
Two minutes later McCafferty’s corner kick from the left was headed on to the bar by Ian Parkhill.
Carrick Rangers responded as Daniel Kelly’s header on nine minutes forced Michael Doherty into a save.
Just before the break Ruairi Harkin fizzed a wicked free kick just wide of the target as Neeson looked beat.
The Carrick stopper had to be at his best to tip over McLaughlin’s powerful shot on 53 minutes.
But Neeson could do nothing about the opener on 63 minutes. Lyndon Kane surged off on a run from inside his own half before releasing Jamie McGonigle, his cross was blocked, but sat up nicely for Kane to fire home.
It was 2-0 just two minutes later as McGonigle coolly finished after Howard Beverland had picked him out.
Carrick weren’t about to lie down though and pulled a goal back in spectacular fashion with nine minutes to go as Aaron Harmon lashed in from the edge of the box.
It was a tense finish as both Ben Roy and Harmon went close, but Coleraine held on to leapfrog Linfield in the table.
Coleraine: Doherty, Kane, Falconer, Beverland, Douglas, Lyons, Harkin (Higgins 78), McCafferty, Brown (McCauley 59), Parkhill (McGonigle 59), McLaughlin.
Subs: Morrow, Watt.
Goals: Kane (63), McGonigle (65).
Carrick Rangers: Neeson, Surgenor, McNeill, Kelly, Harmon, Roy, Johnston (Cherry 66), Doyle, McCloskey (Chines 30), McCaul, Browne (Dick 66).
Subs: Kane, Miskimmin.
Goal: Harmon (81).
Referee: M Smyth.