League Cup quarter-final: Ballymena United 1-2 Coleraine

Coleraine's Neil McCafferty competes against Eoin Kane of Ballymena
Ballymena lost last year's League Cup final 3-2 to Cliftonville

Two goals by in-form striker James McLaughlin saw Coleraine progress to the League Cup semi-finals at the expense of derby rivals Ballymena.

McLaughlin netted the opener in the 13th minute when Lyndon Kane found Jamie McGonigle who provided the final pass into the danger area.

The second goal came on 71 minutes when McLaughlin went through to coolly shoot under the body of keeper Dwayne Nelson.

Ballymena scored a late goal through defender Kyle McVey.

But it came too late to prevent what was a deserved win for Coleraine who are fourth in the Premiership table.

Oran Kearney's men have gone nine matches unbeaten in the league and now look forward to Saturday's draw for the cup semi-finals.

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Ballymena went into the game without the suspended David Cushley and Matthew Tipton and they were forced on the back foot in the early stages.

Ian Parkhill struck a post with a shot before McLaughlin netted his 13th goal of the season.

Early in the second half Ballymena's Willie Faulkner had a shot palmed away by visiting keeper Michael Doherty.

Sky Blues boss sent on substitutes Matthew Shevlin and Darren Henderson in an effort to change things.

But soon after that McLaughlin made it 2-0 to the Bannsiders.

McVey's 89th-minute tap-in, after Doherty had parried out a long-range Mark Magennis free-kick, gave United brief hope of forcing extra-time, but Coleraine closed out the 2-1 victory.

What they said

Coleraine manager Oran Kearney: "The objective on nights like these is to get through - the big thing is getting your name in the hat.

"The goal for Ballymena gave us three minutes of madness which we could have done without. It was a wee lapse at a set piece.

"But there is a big hunger in the team and they ground it out well."

Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson: "Coleraine deserved to win - we did not put them under enough pressure to get something out of the game.

"We did not have enough quality."

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