CHAMPIONSHIP 1: Knockbreda 3-0 Larne

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It’s three league games without a win for Larne after Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Knockbreda.

In truth, this game was done and dusted after half an hour, by which time all the goals had been scored and from then on it was a damage limitation excercise.

The first chance fell to the Reds when James McCabe sent a long range shot over the top. After that it was all downhill for the visitors with the opening goal after three minutes. A cross from the left was allowed to run through to David McMaster who easily beat Larne keeper, Billy Brennan.

It was like the parting of the waves in the Larne defence on 26 minutes. A Jordan Hughes free-kick was allowed to run unchallenged through to Andrew Ferguson who side-footed into the net.

Davy McAlinden’s men were shell shocked at this stage and four minutes later the third arrived. Steven Cockcroft sent a ball down the left flank to Hughes who was allowed to cut into the box and despatch his shot into the net.

Five minutes before the break a Samuel McIlveen corner from the right broke to Larne captain Paul Maguire but his low shot flew inches wide of the upright.

Early in the second half Larne had the bulk of the possession but couldn’t create many clear-cut chances.

Jonathan McManus did deliver a great cross from the left but Ryan McBride in the home goal got to it just ahead of Maguire. The home side then got back into the game with Hughes glancing a header past upright and Steven McCain firing over the top when he should have hit the target.

Larne pressed for a consolation late on but McCabe sent his effort wide when well placed, then Chris Rodgers had a header cleared off the line in the final minute.

KNOCKBREDA: McBride, King, Cockcroft, Ferguson, Hughes, McCain, McMaster, Johnstone, Beggs, J. Hughes, Burns. Subs: Wilson, Johnston, Halliday, Gibson, Templeton.

LARNE: Brennan, Bradley, Calvert (Rodgers 74), Nixon, McMullan, McGrandles (McManus 51), McIlveen, McGonnell, Maguire, McCabe, Robinson (Donnelly 73). Subs not used: Stuart, Stitt.

Referee: T. Clarke (Newtownabbey).