Larne v Lisburn Distillery (BetMcLean League Cup 1st Round) – Tuesday 13th September 2022
Lisburn Distillery travelled to Inver Park on Tuesday night to take on Premiership opposition for the second time in a week, this time in the shape of Larne.
As was the case in the Glentoran game last week, the home side started the game seeing most of the ball and the first sight on goal of the game came in the fifth minute when a promising attack down the left for Larne ended with Andrew Scott shooting over the bar.
Three minutes later the Distillery defence had to be alert to clear inviting crosses from Scott and Dylan Sloan and with just over ten minutes played, the post came to the Whites rescue to prevent Scott from giving the Invermen the lead after he beat Justin Grattan out on the Distillery right.
Larne eventually broke the deadlock in the 20th minute when Daniel Kearns outpaced the Whites defence down the Larne right and crossed into the box, finding Matthew Lusty in space who buried the ball in the back of the net.
At this point, Whites fans may have feared the floodgates opening but much to the surprise of most, the Whites did level the game up just two minutes after going behind. A free kick was awarded against the home team in the Distillery half and the Whites opted to take this quickly. The high ball forward was easily headed away by a defender but only as far as Matthew Swann, the striker took the ball on his chest and volleyed it goal wards from all of 30 yards with the ball nestling in the back of the net. A superb goal and the deadline day signings first since returning to the club, hopefully a sign of things to come.
Unfortunately, the sides were only level for five minutes and it was Larne who regained the lead when Lusty capitalised on a poor clearance from Ethan Carry and shot his side back in front and four minutes after that it was 3-1 as Sean Brown scored after a Kearns cross was only partially cleared.
Larne saw the rest of the half out seeing plenty of the ball but only really managed to threaten the Whites goal once with Carry making a good save to prevent them adding to their lead.
Half Time: Larne 3-1 Lisburn Distillery
Larne almost added to their lead five minutes after the break when a cross came into the box and Carry seemed to collect the ball but then spilled it, fortunately the Whites goalkeeper spared himself any blushes by making a strong block from the resultant shot and soon after did well to push another powerful cross away for a corner.
Larne had made a number of changes at half time and the Whites made changes throughout the second half and as players perhaps settled into the game there were few talking points for much of the second half, though Larne as expected continued to dominate things possession wise.
The fourth goal did come for Larne in the 70th minute, when Carry blocked another cross but could not hold the ball and when attempting to clear the danger substitute Stephen Curley unfortunately scooped the ball into his own goal.
Distillery had a bit of a resurgence after this and Dylan Sinnerton forced a good save from Jack McIntyre after cutting in from the left and shooting from range in the 72nd minute. Two minutes later Swann did well to turn a defender 20 yards from goal but struggled to find the room to get a shot off and was dispossessed but the ball came to Lewis Higginson who shot wide from 30 yards.
Alas, there was to be no comeback for the New Grosvenor men as seconds after Higginson’s effort went wide the ball was in the back of the Distillery net again, when the home side quickly countered from the goal kick and Lusty completed his hat trick scoring the rebound after another save from Carry.
The rest of the game passed with little action of note, though five minutes from time Carry was forced into another fine save from a headed effort.
Unfortunately, the full time whistle sounded and Distillery exited their second cup competition in the space of seven days but attention now back to important league action on Saturday week against Tobermore.
Full Time: Larne 5-1 Lisburn Distillery
Lisburn Distillery; Carry ©, Grattan, Murray, Morgan, Patton, Angus, Higginson, Lynch, Swann, Sinnerton, Robinson.
Lisburn Distillery substitutions; McGuinness (for Lynch, 52 mins), Curley (for Grattan, 52 mins), Elliott (Sinnerton, 77 mins), Shearer (for Murray, 65 mins), Fleming, Warnock (for Angus, 52 mins), Scott.
Report by Cameron Moore (@cameron2604)
David Hunter’s Picture gallery from this game is online @ https://flic.kr/s/aHBqjA7hWU