Ballymena United and Cliftonville march on in County Antrim Shield

Ballymena United captain Jim Ervin celebrates with goalkeeper Jordan Williamson after their penalty shoot-out win over Crusaders
Ballymena United captain Jim Ervin celebrates with goalkeeper Jordan Williamson after their penalty shoot-out win over Crusaders
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Holders Crusaders crashed out of the Toals County Antrim Shield at the quarter-final stage on penalties at Ballymena United.

The Crues game was one of three matches to games to go to spot kicks, with Cliftonville overcoming Linfield at Windsor Park.

Glentoran needed extra time to see off Larne in a five-goal thriller at The Oval.

In the remaining tie Scott Davidson’s late goal gave H&W Welders the win against Ards.

Shane McGinty gave the Sky Blues the lead on 12 minutes as he fired past Sean O’Neill from outside the box.

But Ballymena old boy David Cushley levelled things up on 32 minutes.

Neither team managed to find the target in the remainder of normal time and extra time so it was on to penalties with Jordan Owens, Rory Hale and Ross Clarke all missing to send the Sky Blues through 3-2.

The game at Windsor also went to penalties after a dramatic comeback from the hosts.

Cliftonville were seemingly in control thanks to goals from Ronan Doherty and Ryan Curran.

But the home side hit back with strikes from 15-year-old Dale Taylor and Kirk Millar.

There were no more goals scored so it was on to spot kicks.

Ryan Curran, Chris Curran, Aaron Donnelly, Conor mcMenamin all scored their penalties for the Reds, with Taylor and Niall Quinn missing for the hosts.

There was another enthralling encounter at The Oval.

Larne broke the deadlock ten minutes before half time as David McDaid lobbed in the opener.

Navid Nasseri fired in the equaliser for the Glens four minutes into the second half.

Elvio van Overbeek nudged Glentoran in front 15 minutes before the end.

But withing a minute Martin Donnelly had drawn the side level again and take the game into extra time.

Up stepped Darren Murray in the 97th minute to fire home the winner and seal a semi-final spot.