6 things we learned from Saturday's Irish League action

Tony Kane salutes the Sky Blues fans

Tony Kane salutes the Sky Blues fans

On a day in which Crusaders cemented their place at the top of the table and Carrick boss Kieran Harding called it quits, here's what we learned from the Danske Bank Premiership action.

1. It never rains but it pours for Carrick Rangers

Carrick's woes continued with a 3-0 defeat to Dungannon Swifts

Carrick's woes continued with a 3-0 defeat to Dungannon Swifts

The Gers haven't scored a league goal for the guts of a month and they just can't buy a win at the minute.

Their sixth consecutive defeat spelled the end for boss Kieran Harding who resigned after a 3-0 drubbing to Dungannon Swifts.

There were grey clouds over a Taylor's Avenue on Saturday but a new man at the helm may just lift the gloom and breathe new life into a much-changed squad. There's a big task ahead for the whoever takes it on.

2. Craig's list of 189 games without a goal is over

Craig McClean celebrates his long-awaited goal for the Crues

Craig McClean celebrates his long-awaited goal for the Crues

When defensive stalwart Craig McClean scores, you just know the Crues are well and truly in the groove. The champions' five-star demolition of the Mallards was impressive, but even more impressive is that full-back McClean waited 189 games to net his first for the Seaview outfit.

"To be honest I can't really remember much about it, I was just so happy to score," he told the Beeb post-match before going on to describe in gleeful detail how he glanced home Gavin Whyte's pinpoint corner. One to tell the grandchildren!

3. Clinical Cliftonville

On a day in which all the pre-match chat was about Portadown boss Pat McGibbon's move to axe Sean Mackle and Mark McAllister from the first team, Cliftonville went about their business and reinforced the old cliché that football really is a game of two halves.

The Ports should have been out of sight at the break but it was the north Belfast Reds, decked out in green, who turned the screw after the break. McGuinness, McDaid, Garrett. 3-0. Game over.

Stevie Garrett's strike against Portadown was a bit special

Stevie Garrett's strike against Portadown was a bit special

Lesson for the Ports: opportunities in front of goal are one thing. Sticking the ball in the net is another.

The Shamrock Park men remain marooned at the bottom and former number two Kieran Harding's decision to quit Carrick may not do them any favours either.

Ps. Check out Stevie Garrett's strike. Take a bow.

4. 'Four'tress Windsor
The Blues' 4-0 win over Ards made it six games unbeaten at home in all competitions.

With Paul Smyth causing all sorts of problems in the final third, top scorer Aaron Burns, Stephen Lowry and Kirk Millar rattled home at the Kop end to send Healy's side in 3-0 to the good at the break.

Celebrations as Aaron Burns opens the scoring for the Blues

Celebrations as Aaron Burns opens the scoring for the Blues

Understrength Ards may have topped the table a few weeks back but Linfield had too much for them. And Emmett Friars won't want to see his own goal again either.

5. Sky Blues make Glentoran pay

Ah, the Glens. Brilliant in the first half; ship in four in the second. The managerless men from the East aren't setting the world on fire but there was grounds for optimism at half-time. A lovely little passing move, instigated by Aaron Harmon and finished off by Curtis Allen, gave the Glen men reasons to be cheerful against Ballymena.

But for Jekyll, see Hyde. There must have been a sense of foreboding when big Allan Jenkins drew the Sky Blues level. And the Glens' bubble was well and truly burst when Willie Faulkner pounced. The visitors were resigned to their fate when Tony Kane scored two pens in a row.

Back to the drawing board for this Cock and Hens - and its Linfield next. As for Ballymena? Well, they're sitting pretty in third.

6. It ain't over until it's over

Two up, five minutes to go, Glenavon must have thought they had things sewn up at the Showgrounds but Oran Kearney's Coleraine had other ideas.

Actor Jimmy Nesbitt watched on as his beloved Bannsiders trailed 2-0 after strikes from Eoin Bradley and Kevin Braniff but Jamie McGonigle came off the bench to halve the deficit before fellow sub Jordan Allen made it all square.

Heads I win: Ballymena got the better of the Glens

Heads I win: Ballymena got the better of the Glens

An unlikely point for Coleraine could have been all three had Darren McCauley not steered a last-gasp effort wide.

With Jimmy Nesbitt watching on, Coleraine rescued a point against Glenavon

With Jimmy Nesbitt watching on, Coleraine rescued a point against Glenavon