Coleraine 3-0 Carrick Rangers
Carrick Rangers suffered a third successive league defeat on Saturday afternoon as league leaders Coleraine continued their winning form at The Showgrounds.

The Bannsiders created the first opening of the wet and windy afternoon as Josh Carson pulled the ball back to Eoin Bradley from a corner-kick, but the striker scuffed his shot; failing to make a clean connection.


Moments later the tricky Darren McCauley found young forward Jamie McGonigle in the box, he too seeing his shot blocked.


Bradley and McGonigle then linked up as the former cut in from the wing to find the latter in the box, however the striker side-footed wide.


At the other end Lee Chapman did well to beat former ‘Gers player Aaron Traynor, before sending a low cross into Andrew Mooney whose effort was blocked.


McCauley then cut in from the left flank and let fly with an effort that was destined for the top corner, forcing Harry Doherty into a great diving save to tip the ball away.


From the resulting corner, the hosts opened the scoring. Carson’s deep delivery was headed back into the danger zone by Brad Lyons, and experienced centre-half David Ogilby was on hand to volley into the bottom corner.


Lyons looked to turn from provider to scorer soon after as he had the time to compose himself on the edge of the box, but he sent his effort wide.


Rangers had two final chances as Mark Surgenor firstly sent a long ranged effort well over the bar, before Mark Edgar’s free-kick was tipped over by Chris Johns; meaning it was Coleraine who had the slender advantage at the break.


Hard-working midfielder Ciaron Harkin looked to double Coleraine’s advantage early in the second half, however he floated his free-kick over Doherty’s bar.


Chapman’s delivery then ended up at the feet of Denver Gage who was able to get his shot past Johns but Stephen O’Donnell was positioned on the line to clear the danger.


McCauley continued to impact the game as he picked out McGonigle from a corner; the attacker’s shot hitting striker-partner Bradley on the line and flying out for a goal-kick.


Minutes later, Oran Kearney’s side were awarded a penalty. Gage was booked for bringing down McGonigle, and McCauley stepped up to confidently fire in from 12 yards.


The exciting winger then went close to his second as he was found by Bradley before skipping past a couple of defenders, but dragged his low shot just wide.


McCauley made amends moments later however, this time picking up the ball in the box, skilfully getting past Stuart McMullan and firing into the net for his second of the afternoon.


Before the re-start, Michael Smith replaced Lee Chapman in Carrick’s first substitution of the afternoon.


Things then went from bad to worse for David McAlinden’s side as Gavin Taggart was shown a straight red by Raymond Crangle for a tackle on Coleraine’s Harkin.


Having went down to 10 men, another change was made with Chris Morrow coming on in place of Andrew Mooney.


Young McGonigle continued to press for a goal as he slammed a shot just wide of the post from inside the area.


The ‘Gers made their final change with 15 minutes remaining; Dale Malone replacing Martin Maybin in attack.


Bradley then curled an audacious effort off the post from range, before uncharacteristically slamming the re-bound wide with the goal at his mercy.


The physical forward had another good chance soon after as he was picked out by Adam Mullan, however he sliced his shot high into the air.


The North Down men had one final chance as Traynor’s cross found Lyons, but his header crashed off the bar in the last chance in a game which ended in a comfortable result for Coleraine.


Carrick Rangers: Doherty; Smyth, McNally, Gage, Edgar; Chapman (Smith, 67, Taggart, Surgenor, McAllister; Maybin (Malone, 76), Mooney (Morrow, 70).


Unused substitutes: McNally, Rice.

updated: 17 September 2017

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 Crusaders 38 28 7 3 106 3891
 Coleraine 38 26 11 1 76 3189
 Glenavon 38 19 12 7 85 5269
 Linfield 38 20 7 11 72 4667
 Cliftonville 38 20 5 13 68 4565
 Glentoran 38 14 9 15 52 5251
 Ballymena United 38 14 6 18 53 6548
 Dungannon Swifts 38 13 6 19 42 6245
 Ards 38 12 4 22 42 7440
 Warrenpoint Town 38 8 6 24 52 8630
 Carrick Rangers 38 6 5 27 31 7823
 Ballinamallard United 38 5 8 25 39 8923