Eoin Bradley and Josh Carson goals bag Coleraine full points at Crusaders
A goal in each half secured Seaview success over Crusaders as Coleraine moved up to third in the Premiership standings thanks to Eoin Bradley and Josh Carson.
The 2-0 victory provided reward for an assured display in Belfast by the Bannsiders - with Bradley breaking the deadlock on 10 minutes.
The experienced forward, who had one sight of goal in the initial exchanges, displayed composure within the penalty area to convert as a searching Coleraine ball from deep created problems for the Crues.
Paul Heatley hooked goalwards off Adam Lecky’s flick and connected inside the box to Ben Kennedy’s corner-kick during the Crues response.
However, Jonny Tuffey was called into action on two occasions in quick succession as Coleraine offered the greater cutting edge.
Tuffey was quick off his line to cut out the threat of a ball in behind the home backline as Matthew Shevlin attacked the space.
Then the former Northern Ireland international produced a superb diving save to deny the sparkling Conor McKendry a fine goal from distance.
Coleraine carved out the first opening of the second half as Jamie Glackin’s corner-kick was steered towards the target by a looping Rodney Brown header but Tuffey was on hand to produce the stop.
Kennedy burst down the right on 52 minutes off Lecky’s sweeping pass but the delivery was met by a combination of Jordan Forsythe and Johnny McMurray and the final contact dropped wide of the Coleraine net.
Coleraine doubled the advantage past the hour mark with a slick counter-attack in which Glackin attacked the penalty area and his low drive was stopped at a stretch by Tuffey.
However, the supporting Shevlin kept the threat alive by forcing it back into middle of the box, with the ball deflecting off Billy Joe Burns and Carson raced in to head home.
Daniel Larmour’s fine block stopped a Shevlin drive from a promising area as the Bannsiders continued to pose the greater attacking threat.
A Forsythe shot offered Gareth Deane a comfortable save before Stephen Lowry tested Tuffey with the final kick of the night as Coleraine banked full points in convincing fashion.
Crusaders: Tuffey, Burns, Weir (Frazer, 77), Kennedy, Lecky (Owens, 62), Forsythe, O’Rourke, Larmour, Heatley (Clarke, 62), Robinson, McMurray (Doyle, 62).
Subs (not used): O’Neill, Hegarty, Wilson.
Coleraine: Deane, Kane, Brown, McKendry, Lowry, Bradley (Wilson, 92), Carson, O’Donnell, Glackin, Traynor, Shevlin (Friel, 84).
Subs (not used): Gallagher, Mullan, Tweed, Parkhill, Kelly.
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