Loughgall moved up to 2nd place in the IFA Championship thanks to a comprehensive four-goal win over Tobermore United. It was Loughgall’s third 4 – 0 scoreline in the past week with a win over Bangor and last Tuesday night’s loss to Dungannon Swifts.
Boss Colin Malone made three changes from the side that started against Dungannon in midweek with Neil King and Chris Hull coming into the defensive backline in place of Mark Stewart and the injured John Guy. In midfield Stephen Doyle replaced Steven Ferguson, whilst there was an added boost for Malone as Alain Emerson recovered from back injury to be listed on the substitutes bench.
It was the visitors who impressed early on as they forced a couple of good opportunities; first Hugo Batista tested ‘keeper Marc Robinson with a low shot to the front post on 7 minutes before Neil Lamont drew another super save from Robinson on 15 minutes.
The hosts came extremely close to opening the scoring on 26 minutes when Doyle picked up a pass on the left flank and moved inside before unleashing a tremendous 30-yard drive that crashed off the underside of the crossbar, bouncing on the line where ‘keeper Sammy Foster gratefully collected.
The first goal came five minutes later when Dale Malone’s corner was headed home by Paul Keenan from close range for his first goal of the season. Loughgall had threatened one minute prior from another excellent corner delivery as Marty Verner was denied by a great reaction save from Foster.
Loughgall extended their advantage in the 40th minute when Malone, playing in central midfield, broke through the United defence and confidently chipped goalkeeper Foster from range.
The home side continued to control the game throughout the second half and limited Tobermore to a few chances; one of which was on 65 minutes when Batista and Lamont combined for the latter to head narrowly wide at the back post.
And they were punished with 15 minutes remaining as Doyle crossed from the byline for Verner to tap home and convert a superb attacking move that substitute Adam Pedlow was heavily involved in. The rout was completed in injury time as a quick breakaway between Pedlow and Verner released Greg Hall who raced through to slot home.
Loughgall: Robinson, Hall, Brady, King, Hull, Malone, Hawthorne, Teggart (Herron 90m), Doyle (Emerson 84m), Keenan (Pedlow 71m), Verner. Unused subs: Stewart, Flanaghan.
Tobermore United: Foster, Donaldson, Millar (Magill 59m), Whiteside, Neil, Stewart (Hennaghan 45m), Kelly, Gardiner, Lamont, Batista (Hassan 80m). Unused subs: McKenna, Maguire.
Referee: Lee Tavinder