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Lee Lynch grabs winning goal for Larne over Glentoran

Lee Lynch climbed off the sidelines to grab the spotlight for Larne over Glentoran and cap a thrilling second-half clash.

Lynch blasted home from the edge of the penalty area with what proved the game’s decisive goal at Inver Park on 86 minutes.

It secured three superb points for Larne to push Tiernan Lynch’s side back into fourth spot in the Premiership standings - with the visitors’ 2-1 loss leaving the league leaders’ lead over Linfield at three.

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Lynch was the second substitute on the scoresheet following a Glentoran equaliser thanks to Ruaidhri Donnelly’s stooping header.

Lee Lynch fires home the winning goal in Larne’s victory over Glentoran. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

That goal served to cancel out a Lee Bonis effort that kicked off the second half in style.

Play before the break proved competitive with sights of goal limited.

The first half almost finished with a goal, however, on 43 minutes when Ben Doherty’s whipped cross was met by Bonis at the back post but his header hit the crossbar.

The combination led to scoring success in the second half as Doherty sent a cross into the danger zone and Bonis was aggressive to challenge Patrick McClean and force home the ball.

It marked a sixth goal in nine games for the January signing by Larne from Portadown for £100,000.

Larne attempted to take advantage of the upper hand but Mark Randall’s drive from distance cleared the crossbar.

The Glens’ triple substitution on 72 minutes was designed to increase the attacking options - and Donnelly made his mark by moving low to flick home Conor McMenamin’s ball into the box.

Jeff Hughes had earlier hit the crossbar for Larne and a third attempt on the night off the woodwork arrived when the hosts’ John Herron was denied by the frame of the target.

However, the game’s final goal handed Larne control when fellow substitute Andrew Scott found Lynch and his slick strike proved beyond Aaron McCarey.

McCarey then produced a string of last-gasp saves at 2-1 to prevent Scott and Lynch from increasing the vital lead - but, ultimately, the one-goal gap proved enough for home delight over Glentoran.

Larne: Devlin, Balmer, Watson, Sule, Herron, Randall, McDaid, Doherty, Bolger, Bonis, Hughes.

Subs: Ferguson, Kelly, Nasseri, Hale, Scott, Lynch, Jarvis

Glentoran: McCarey, Kane, Marshall, J.Donnelly, McDaid, Murray, McClean, Clucas, Marron, McMenamin, Plum.

Subs: Garrett, Burns, McCartan, R.Donnelly, O’Connor, Cushnie, Glendinning

referee: Tony Clarke

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