Glenavon 6-2 Rathfriland Rangers
Euro Electrix Mid-Ulster Cup, Round 1
Mourneview Park, Tuesday 10th September 2019
Match Report by Calum Jones
Defending champions Glenavon booked their place in the quarter-finals of the Mid-Ulster Cup with a comfortable 6-2 victory over Northern Amateur Football League side Rathfriland Rangers at Mourneview Park on Tuesday night.
Ross Hunter opened the scoring for the hosts on eight minutes before Conor McCloskey doubled the lead on 16 minutes.
The visitors reduced their arrears on 19 minutes through Nigel Prentice, only for Glenavon to go straight up the other end and add a third when Hunter grabbed his second.
Stephen Murray scored a double in the space of 10 minutes to make it 5-1, while Jordan Jenkins added the sixth goal on 39 minutes.
Rathfriland pulled a goal back in the early minutes of the second half through Martin Havern but they never threatened to get back into the game and Glenavon saw out a comfortable win.
Stephen Hughes dragged a low shot wide of the post in the opening minute for Rangers, while Murray missed a great opportunity to open the scoring for Glenavon two minutes later when he failed to convert past Jonathan Parr from close range.
The deadlock was broken on eight minutes by the impressive Hunter, who pounced on a rebound to drill a low shot into the net.
Murray failed to convert another great chance on 11 minutes when Kyle Beggs picked him out with a cross from the right flank. The striker’s header went straight at Parr.
McCloskey doubled Glenavon’s lead with a screamer of a goal in the 16th minute, arrowing a right-foot shot into the far top corner from 25 yards out.
The away side got on the scoresheet three minutes later. Ruairi Fitzpatrick, who had a good game for the visitors on the wing, cut inside Joel Bassett and curled a low shot towards the far bottom corner. James Taylor dived down to his right to make the save, but the ball found its way to Prentice and he slotted home to make it 2-1.
However, Glenavon responded by going straight up the other end and adding their third, as Andy Hall set up Hunter to score his second of the night on 20 minutes.
Hall was again the provider four minutes later when he teed up Murray to score his first and Glenavon’s fourth.
Murray added his second and Glenavon’s fifth ten minutes later when Hunter squared the ball to him and he slotted into the bottom corner.
Hunter came close to a hat-trick in the 34th minute when his rasping shot from 25 yards went narrowly over the bar.
Jenkins scored Glenavon’s sixth goal just a minute later, drilling a low shot in from just outside the box.
Rathfriland reduced their deficit to four goals on 53 minutes when former Glenavon player Havern diverted Prentice’s shot beyond Taylor to make it 6-2.
The visitors rarely threatened again as the half wore on and Glenavon saw out the rest of the game to secure a comfortable win and seal passage to the quarter-finals.
The Lurgan Blues are back in Premiership action on Saturday (14th September) as they make the trip to Seaview to take on league leaders Crusaders (kick-off 3pm).
Glenavon: 1. James Taylor (GK), 2. Leighton Jameson, 3. Joel Bassett, 4. Jordan Jenkins, 6. Daniel Larmour, 7. Kyle Beggs, 8. Conor McCloskey, 9. Stephen Murray, 10. Ross Hunter, 11. Andy Hall, 15. Aaron Harmon (C)
Subs: 5. Jesse Carson (for 15. Aaron Harmon, 46’), 12. Owen Taylor (for 11. Andy Hall, 66’), 14. Ben McMorris (for 3. Joel Bassett, 76’); not used: 16. Christopher Gill, 17. Ryan Walsh
Goals: 10. Ross Hunter (8’, 20’), 8. Conor McCloskey (16’), 9. Stephen Murray (24’, 35’), 4. Jordan Jenkins (39’)
Yellow Cards: 6. Daniel Larmour (41’), 2. Leighton Jameson (90+2’)
Rathfriland Rangers: 1. Jonathan Parr (GK), 2. Jonathan Roy (C), 3. Johneen Black, 4. Ruairi Cunningham, 5. Daryl Evans, 6. Graeme Edgar, 7. Ruairi Fitzpatrick, 8. Jonathan Scannell, 9. Marty Havern, 10. Stephen Hughes, 11. Nigel Prentice
Subs: 16. Peter Telford (for 6. Graeme Edgar, 30’), 15. Joshua Buchanan (for 4. Ruairi Cunningham, 74’), 14. Adam Loughlin (for 10. Stephen Hughes, 87’)
Goals: 11. Nigel Prentice (19’), 9. Martin Havern (53’)
Yellow Cards: 3. Johneen Black (53’), 4. Ruairi Cunningham (73’)
Referee: Jason McClelland