INSTITUTE: Kevin Deery's men march on at United
Institute secured a massive three points following a deserved 2-0 win at Annagh United, this afternoon.
Second half goals from Shane McGinty and Niall Grace ensured the Drumahoe men moved up into fifth place in the Championship One table and their push for promotion continues.
The attacking minded and solid like display meant that goalkeeper Martin Gallagher secured his eighth clean-sheet in a row.
In truth after McGinty gave them the lead from the spot on 70 minutes, it was a case of how many were the visitors going to score and if they had a bit more composure and luck they would have scored more than the only one which they did.
The woodwork came to the home side’s rescue on two minutes when Grace won possession from Richard Allen just outside United’s penalty box, he in turn fed Gareth Brown the striker’s stinging drive, which had keeper Marc Robinson beaten, rattled the crossbar.
Brown was in the thick of things again on 17 minutes but from close range he was unable to get on the end of Sean Roddy’s tremendous right wing centre.
Another Roddy delivery on 24 minutes found Michael McCrudden, but the ex-Ballinamallard United’s header from 10 yards was well off target.
McCrudden had an even better chance a minute later, this time his close range strike was straight at Robinson.
Just after the half hour mark a McCrudden left wing in-swinging corner found Mark Scoltock, but the big centre-back’s towering header from six yards was kept out by a fully stretched Robinson.
Right on the stroke of half-time United had their first effort at goal but Scott McCordick’s 20 yard drive, which had Gallagher scrambling, sailed just wide.
The visitor’s thought they had taken the lead on 58 minutes when Roddy’s right wing cross found Grace who powerfully headed home from 10 yards, but his celebrations were cut short as the referee awarded a free-kick for a push.
Boss Kevin Deery made a double substitution on 66 minutes with Jamie McIntyre and Stephen O’Donnell replacing Aaron Harkin and Roddy and within minutes the changes paid off.
McIntyre burst clear down the right and as he raced into the penalty box he was brought down by Mark Stewart and the referee pointed to the spot, from which McGinty made no mistake slotting the ball low into Robinson’s bottom left hand corner.
Once that opening goal went in you could see the relief amongst the Waterside men and they always looked like a side who were going to score a second, which they duly did on 86 minutes.
A slick passing move ended with the ball finding Grace on the edge of the box and he took a touch before unleashing an unstoppable shot, which flew past Robinson and into the keeper’s top left hand corner.
In the closing stages a super through ball by Ciaron Harkin released McCrudden, who skipped around the out-rushing Robinson, but his first time shot towards goal was deflected wide by the back-tracking Allen.
Then right at the death twice Brown had chances but on both occasions he took too many touches and was either denied by Robinson or by the United defence.
Annagh United: Robinson, White, Campbell, Stewart, Allen, Craig, Smith, Park, Nesbitt, McCordick, Neale.
Institute: Gallagher, Roddy (O’Donnell 66), Scoltock, McDermott, Hume (Dunne 82); C Harkin, A Harkin (McIntyre 66); McGinty; Grace, Brown, McCrudden.