With Glenavon ringing the changes for this Mid Ulster Cup semifinal it was perhaps not surprising that the Lurgan Blues first half performance was rather disjointed and Dungannon took full advantage scoring twice and also hitting the woodwork to take a 2-0 lead into the interval.
Glenavon’s second half performance was much improved and goals from Matty Lynch and Declan O’Brien pulled it back to 2-2 with five minutes remaining only for Jamie Douglas to pop up with a late winner for Rodney McAree’s side.
Douglas had the first chance of the game when he headed over at the far post with just three minutes on the clock.
Two minutes later Josh Lynch swept the ball out to Declan O’Brien and he raced down the left before cutting the ball back to McGrory who laid it off to Ciaran Martyn. His shot was deflected off a defender’s boot for a corner.
Dermot McCaffrey put the Swifts in front in the 8th minute when he rose to head Matty Hazley’s corner down and over the line.
David Elebert, making his return from injury, lasted only 12 minutes having to be replaced by Alex McIlmail who just celebrated his 15th birthday in December,and forcing a reshuffle at the back with Andy McGrory dropping back to right back, with McIlmail slotting in on the right midfield.
Hazley got on the scoresheet himself 11 minutes later when he fired home a left foot shot from just outside the box.
Just a minute later it could have been 3-0 to the hosts when Gary Liggett rounded James McGrath and rolled the ball towards the goal but Bobby Burns got back to clear it off the line.
Kevin Braniff’s 36th minute free kick cleared the bar and two minutes later he set up Mark Patton with a shooting chance but the winger’s 20 yard effort sailed straight into the gloves of Andy Coleman.
Just before the break Cormac Burke thumped a header off the Glenavon cross bar with the goal at his mercy.
Three minutes into the second half saw Patton race clear down the left and cross to the near post where O’Brien got in ahead of his marker only to head wide.
Burke hit the woodwork again in the 56th minute, this time a right foot shot across the goal rebounded off the base of the post and was cleared.
Substitute Matty Lynch pulled a goal back in the 65th minute with a wonderful volley from 25 yards after a high ball into the box by McGrory was only half cleared.
Coleman made a good save with his legs from a close range shot by O’Brien and after the Swifts keeper dropped the resulting corner this defenders came to his rescue.
In the 82nd minute McIlmail showed a great touch to control Kevin Braniff’s pin-point 50 yard diagonal pass but the young forward couldn’t keep his left foot shot down.
O’Brien equalised with five minutes remaining when he got on the end of a ball over the top from Braniff, raced into the box and smashed a shot past Coleman.
Douglas restored the Swifts lead just two minutes later when he twisted in the box and fired a shot from 12 yards that many have taken a deflection as it flew into the bottom corner.
Patton then tested Coleman with a left foot shot from the edge of the area, the Swifts keeper gathering the ball at the second attempt.
Glenavon: McGrath, Marron, Kelly, Elebert, Burns, Patton, Martyn, J Lynch, McGrory, Braniff, O’Brien. Subs: M Lynch (Martyn 62), Morgan (Kelly 76), McKenna, McIlmail (Elebert 12)
Dungannon Swifts: Coleman, Montgomery, McCaffrey, Lowe, O’Rourke, Burke, Hazley, Fitzpatrick, Mullen, Douglas, Liggett. Subs: McConnell (Liggett 70), McDonald (Mullen 70), McMaster (Hazley 81)