Institute 2 – 0 Loughgall

A understrength Loughgall side lost out to two second half goals from Niall Grace and Michael McCrudden as Institute bounced back from their League Cup exit.

Loughgall were missing Ricky Copeland, Nicky Hudson, Stuart Mallen, Aaron Canning, Jack Upritchard and Peter Campbell from selection.

The first half provided little in the way of clear cut chances. The closest either side came to opening the scoring was on the stroke of half-time when Ciaron Harkin volleyed just wide from 20 yards.

The Villagers threatened four minutes in the second period when Warner Mullen flashed a free-kick into the sidenetting.

The deadlock was broken in the 56th minute when the ball broke for Niall Grace on the edge of the area and the powerful striker fired low into the corner beyond the diving ‘keeper Gareth Buchanan.

Loughgall missed a gilt-edged chance to level on 65 minutes when Francis McCann’s corner caused confusion in the Institute penalty area. The ball fell to Josh Finlay however ‘Stute goalkeeper Martin Gallagher denied him at point-black range.

Stute sealed the win with 8 minutes remaining when a long ball from goalkeeper Gallagher was flicked by Grace into McCrudden’s path and he chipped over the outrushing Buchanan.

Institute: Gallagher, Morrow, O’Donnell, McDermott, McFadden; McCrudden, A Harkin, C Harkin, Doherty (S Curry 56m); Grace (Cooley 86m), Brown (Armstrong 67m). Unused subs: McLaughlin, Doherty.

Loughgall: Buchanan, Devlin, Taylor, Finlay, McCann (Uprichard 72), Dallas, McMaster, Ferguson, Mullen, McConnell, Elliott. Unused subs: Wright, Stretton.