Stephen O'Donnell (32)
Jamie McGonigle (57)


Jamie McGonigle celebrates with his Coleraine team-mates (©INPHO/Stephen Hamilton)


Coleraine moved four points clear at the top of the table following an ultimately comfortable derby victory over Ballymena United at The Showgrounds.

United might have moved in front when, from a Tony Kane corner, Cathair Friel saw his effort from the edge of the area cleared off the line at the near post.

Then, a short time later, an Andrew Burns throw-in was stabbed forward by Conor McCloskey but Chris Johns did well to stick a leg out to block the ball.

At the other end Brad Lyons tested Conor Brennan with a low free-kick from distance while Eoin Bradley then saw an effort kicked away from inside the box.

The Bannsiders found a way through after 32 minutes after Darren McCauley delivered a free-kick into the danger zone for the unmarked Stephen O'Donnell to nod the ball past Conor Brennan at the back post.

And it was 2-0 just before the hour after the United defence failed to clear a free-kick with Jamie McGonigle finding the net with a low finish into the far corner.

Friel might have pulled a goal back for United on 67 minutes but could only direct a header narrowly wide while Kane saw a later half-chance saved by Johns.

BBC Sport NI coverage

Ballymena United: Brennan, Kane, Flynn, Gault, Thompson, Friel, McCloskey, Burns, Ervin, Millar, McKinney subs Glendinning (not used), Faulkner (replaced McKinney 72), McCullough (not used), McCaffrey (replaced McCloskey 72), Loughran (not used)

Coleraine: Johns, Mullan, Harkin, Ogilby, McCauley, Bradley, Lyons, O'Donnell, Parkhill, Traynor, McGonigle subs Douglas (not used), McConaghie (not used), Kirk (not used), Whiteside (replaced Traynor 61), McCready (replaced Bradley 81)

Referee: Andrew Davey

Attendance: 2227

Tags:  Ballymena United  Coleraine