Peter Wilson reports from Inver Park
LARNE saw off Portadown with a 3-0 at Inver Park, as Tiernan Lynch’s men celebrated lifting a first league title in 47 years.
Ben Tilney and David McDaid got a goal apiece in the second half, while Tomas Cosgrove gave the home side the opener. The result further dents Portadown’s hopes of making the Premiership promotion play-off spot as second-placed Carrick Rangers won away to H&W Welders.
The hosts set the pace right from kick off with Lee Lynch whipping in a deep cross for David McDaid, partially cleared by Portadown before the ball fell to Tomas Cosgrove who flashed his shot across the face of goal.
Moments later, McDaid turned provider as he crossed low into Martin Donnelly but Declan Dunne got himself into a good position to deny him.
On 26 minutes, Sean Mackle’s free-kick ended up on the wrong side of the post for the Ports.
As Larne pushed for the opening goal, Patrick McNally’s header from a Lee Lynch corner was cleared off the line with Donnelly gathering the ball and once more feeding it to McNally who headed straight at the keeper.
Larne’s opener came night minutes before half-time; Cosgrove making a striding run down the right wing, playing a one-two with Donnelly, and lofting his shot from the edge of the area into the roof of the net.
Portadown went in search of a equaliser right from the restart and could have been level just five minutes into the second period when Mark Carson got on the end of a Martin Bradley and placed his shot wide of the post
With 56 minutes gone, Lynch beat Greg Hall on the wing to cross in toward the back post with McDaid winning the aerial battle with Dunne, but unable keep his header down
Just after the hour mark, substitute Adam McCallum connected his head with Chris Lavery’s corner but Conor Devlin was alert to make the save.
Larne doubled their lead on 71 minutes, with Ben Tilney’s effort taking a deflection off the defender, before ending up in the bottom corner.
David McDaid then got his name on the scoresheet in the first minute of stoppage time as he beat the offside trap to slip the ball beneath the advancing Dunne.
Larne: Devlin, Sule, Ramsey, McEleney (Hassin), McDaid, Donnelly (Stewart), Tilney, Lynch (Scullion), McNally, Cosgrove, Hughes
Unused subs: Dougherty, Tear
Portadown: Dunne, Carson (Salley), McCallum, Larkin, Kilmartin, Braniff, Hall, Thompson, Bradley (Duke), Wilson, Mackle (Lavery)
Unused subs: McKenna, Douglas
Man of the Match: Fuad Sule (Larne)
Referee: Ken Gibbons
Up next for the Invermen is Saturday’s trip to Dundela. Kick-off at Wilgar Park is at 3pm.