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Premiership

MIDWEEK SUCCESS SEES BLUES STRETCH LEAD

08 Apr 2021
football
© Brian Little/PressEye Linfield mob double goalscorer Jordan Stewart
Linfield stretched their advantage at the top of the table into double figures while there were also midweek wins for Cliftonville, Glenavon and Larne.
 
The Blues met nearest challengers Coleraine on Wednesday evening at Windsor Park and, thanks to a first half Jordan Stewart double, emerged 2-1 winners on the night to move 12 points clear.
 
Stewart opened the scoring after 17 minutes with a finish high into the net before bagging his second of the evening on the stroke of half-time. Curtis Allen pulled one back for the Bannsiders late in the game but it was too late to salvage anything from the game.
 
Glentoran failed to capitalise on a two-goal lead over Ballymena United at The Showgrounds on Tuesday night.
 
Seanan Clucas struck twice, kicking things off on 14 minutes and then seemingly securing the points with just over a quarter-of-an-hour remaining. However, Shay McCartan reduced that lead on 78 minutes and then converted from the spot with four minutes to go.
 
Goals from Andy Mitchell and Ronan Hale helped Larne defeat 2-1 Portadown at Shamrock Park.
 
Mitchell scored a ninth minute penalty for the visitors but Lee Bonis' levelled in first half stoppage time to ensure matters were all square at the break. And that was how it stayed until midway through the second half when Hale fired home the winner into the top corner.
 
Michael McCrudden brought his tally to five goals in two games as Cliftonville hit three without reply past Dungannon Swifts at Solitude.
 
Following on from his weekend hat-trick, McCrudden edged the Reds in front just after the half-hour with a header past Roy Carroll. Ryan O'Reilly doubled Cliftonville's lead early in the second half before McCrudden made sure on 61 minutes.
 
Glenavon edged past Warrenpoint Town at Mourneview Park thanks to Danny Purkis' winner right at the end of the first half after pouncing on a poor backpass to take the ball past Gabriel Sava and into the net.
 
Meanwhile, at the Loughshore Hotel Arena, Carrick Rangers and Crusaders finished one apiece thanks to goals from Jamie McGonigle on four minutes and Cathair Friel's leveller an hour later.