Crusaders see off battling Institute at Seaview in Danske bank Premiership

Crusaders celebrate taking the lead
Crusaders celebrate taking the lead

Crusaders 3 Institute 2

Crusaders huffed and puffed at Seaview before beating Institute 3-2 in the Danske Bank Premiership after a tight battle.

It had looked so good for Stephen Baxter's side as they took an early lead through a strike from Rory Patterson but Stute had other ideas as they fought back through a Michael McCrudden penalty in the second half - before Paul Heatley scored near the death to hopefully seal the victory.

But Institute had other ideas and McCrudden scored to make it 2-2 before Patterson scored from the penalty spot in the eighth minute of injury time to seal the victory.

It was a strange performance for the Shore Road side as they started brightly but seemed to run out of ideas as the match progressed before Heatley scored their second and Patterson the winner.

Institute on the other hand showed spirit and commitment as they didn't let their heads drop after Patterson's early strike and they kept going as McCrudden scored near the end to nearly earn his side a share of the spoils.

The Crues had the first chance of the match in the second minute. Ross Clarke found striker Rory Patterson who headed over.

It was 1-0 three minutes later as Patterson rifled a shot past Stute keeper Martin Gallagher from the edge of the box. It was a thunderbolt from Patterson and Gallagher had no chance.

Patterson had a chance to get another one in the 12th minute. His effort taking a huge bounce off the surface before going over the bar.

Institute had a chance from Joseph McCready in the 15th minute. The striker making ground before his effort was blocked wide by keeper Harry Doherty.

The visitors had another chance just before the break. Skipper McCrudden trying his luck from distance.

Institute were coming more into the game while the Crues seemed to have taken their foot off the gas.

Six minutes in to the second half Stute had another chance. Colm McLaughlin passed across goal for McCrudden, who screwed his effort wide.

A minute later Crusaders nearly made ot 2-0. A passing move resulted in Ross Clarke who hit the bar with his rasping drive.

Institute were awarded a penalty in the 55th minute as McCrudden was brought down in the box.

And McCrudden picked himself up to fire home from the spot and no-one can say Institute didn't deserve to be level.

McCready then went on a mazy run in the 60th minute. His shot however was well saved by Doherty but the home support were far from happy with what they were watching.

Institute hot the post in the 74th minute. Ronan Doherty hit a curling shot that beat keeper Doherty but not the woodwork.

Eight minutes from the end Clarke twisted and turned in the visitors box but his shot was inches wide.

It was 2-1 to the home side in the 86th minute as Heatley raced clear to shot past the advancing Gallagher. A good finish from Heatley who seemed to have got his side out of jail.

But that was not the case as McCrudden shot home to bring his side back into the game at 2-2.

However in this rollar-coaster on a match Crusaders were awarded a penalty in injury time and Patterson scored to give his side a 3-2 victory.

CRUSADERS: Doherty, McChrystal, Coates, Ward (Burns 62 mins), Carvill (Cushley 78 mins), Forsythe, Owens, Snoody (Lowry 62mins), Heatley, Clarke, Patterson.

Subs not used: O'Neill, Glackin, Ruddy, Thompson.

INSTITUE: Gallagher, McLaughlin (Dunne 90 mins), Bonner, Curry, Doherty, Harkin, McCrudden, Scoltock, Jarvis, Wilson, McCready (Brown 90 mins).

Subs not used: Curry, Moorehead, Morrow McIntyre, Henderson.

Referee: Ian McNabb


Nicky Fullerton