04 Nov 2023
© Pacemaker Press Andrew Scott and Jordan Forsythe in action at Seaview

The nights might be drawing in, the temperatures might be getting decidedly cooler but the Sports Direct Premiership continues unabated after another intriguing weekend that produced a hearty helping of big results and big goals.

Linfield stay eight points clear at the summit after a three-goal win away to Newry City.

Scoreless at the break, the Blues hit their hosts with a triple whammy early in the second half through goals from Matthew Fitzpatrick, Joel Cooper and Kirk Millar in a ten-minute blast around the hour mark.

Champions Larne leapfrogged Cliftonville into second spot with a 2-1 Friday night victory at Inver Park.

First half goals from Paul O’Neill and Joe Thomson put Tiernan Lynch’s side into a commanding position at the break, with the Reds only grabbing a stoppage time consolation through Ronan Hale.

Conor McKendry was the two-goal hero as Coleraine travelled to Seaview to defeat Crusaders.

After the first half failed to set the pulses racing it fell to McKendry to break the deadlock on 54 minutes with a low near post finish, before he doubled up to secure the points with just under a quarter-of-an-hour remaining.

Carrick Rangers twice came from behind to defeat Glentoran by the odd goal in five at the BetMcLean Oval.

Marcus Kane edged the Glens in front early in the game, a lead they held until just after the break when Danny Purkis levelled from close range.

Jay Donnelly restored home advantage with around 20 minutes remaining but a second for Purkis – this time from the spot – and a late Curtis Allen winner saw Stuart King’s side leave with the points.

Loughgall were top scorers of the day, with a five-goal haul at home to Ballymena United despite initially going behind.

Ryan Waide edged the Sky Blues in front on 16 minutes before Benji Magee levelled seven minutes after that. Jay Boyd then handed the Villagers the advantage on the half-hour mark just before Magee hit his second of the afternoon.

James Carroll made it 4-1 not long after the interval with a back post header and although Waide responded for the visitors a short time later Mark Patton made sure of a commanding victory for Loughgall with just over a quarter-of-an-hour remaining.

Meanwhile, at Mourneview Park, Aaron Prendergast knocked home what proved to be the 35th minute winner and only goal of the game as Glenavon picked up a huge three points at Dungannon Swifts’ expense.