Horrendous conditions at Mourneview Park with a fierce wind making football difficult for both teams. There were few chances in the first half for either side, Rhys Marshall having a 5th minute effort blocked by Daniel Kelly as he got on the end of Kyle Neill’s free kick to the back post.
Carrick’s best effort came in the 29th minute when Mark Sykes slipped in the 6 yard box as he tried to clear the ball but the young midfielder recovered his feet quickly enough to divert Kyle Cherry’s shot out for a corner.
Glenavon finally broke the deadlock ten minutes into the second half from the penalty spot after Joe McNeill tripped Rhys Marshall and Daniel Kearns sent Brian Neeson the wrong way stroking his penalty into the bottom corner. Marshall had burst into the box with the ball and was about to get on the rebound after his own shot had been blocked when McNeill swung a leg and brought the young midfielder crashing down.
Jonny Tuffey was called into serious action for the first time in the 65th minute when he had to get down smartly to turn Brian McCaul’s shot round the post after the ex-Glenavon midfielder had played a neat one-two on the edge of the box with Adam Dick.
Kearns doubled the Lurgan Blues lead in the 74th minute when he fired a right foot shot into the bottom corner from the edge of the box after a great cross field pass from Mark Sykes picked out Joel Cooper and he beat right back McCaul before squaring the ball for Kearns to run onto.
Carrick never looked like getting back into the game as Glenavon held on comfortably for a valuable three points that moves them above Linfield overnight.
Glenavon: Tuffey, Marshall, Kelly, Lindsay (C), Neill (Dillon 77), Hall, Kilmartin, Sykes, Cooper (McGrory 87), Kearns (O’Brien 89), Bradley. Subs: Dillon, Patton, McGrory, O’Brien, Hamilton
Cautions: Cooper 82
Carrick Rangers: Neeson, McCaul, D Kelly, Harmon (C), McNeill, Cherry (Kane 78), Roy (Chines 68), McCloskey, Johnson, Dick (Browne 82). Subs: Kane, Chines, Browne, Surgenor, Taggart
Cautions: Roy 22, McCaul 44
Referee: Raymond Hetherington