Coleraine hit seven against ten man Ballynahinch

ON TARGET: Coleraine's Curtis Allen
ON TARGET: Coleraine's Curtis Allen

Coleraine boss Oran Kearney was in seventh heaven as his side eased past Amateur League side Ballynahinch United in the Irish Cup to set up a sixth round tie with derby rivals Ballymena United.

After a goalless first half the Bannsiders ran riot after the break firing in seven without reply thanks to Curtis Allen, Ruairi Harkin (2), Stephen Lowry (2), Paul Owens and Stuart McMullan leaving Kearney a happy man at the end.

“Ballynahinch have played five games to get here and today was their cup final, to me anyone playing in a cup final raises their game,” said Kearney.

“You could see that, they were tremendous in the first half they worked their socks off and battled for everything without really troubling us.

“That progression pleases me as although we saw off Larne Tech last year with three late goals, it was nowhere near the complete performance it should have been as Larne hit the post and created some great opportunities.

“Today was so much better as we were well up for it and bang on our game.

“In games like these the first goal is always vital.

“Once you get it you can go into cruise control.

“You could see the shackles come off when that first one went in, the shoulders went back and there was a bit more calmness to our play.

“We were very professional and went on to score a few goals, which is very pleasing as you can sometimes take your foot off the pedal.

“But ultimately cup games are all about getting your name into the hat for the next round and we’ve done that today and what a tie it’s going to be in the sixth round.

“There will be plenty of excitement about it that’s for sure.

“But it’ll be a busy week for us with our Setanta Cup game sandwiched in between two games against Ballymena.”