Larne boss David McAlinden hailed his side’s attitude as they dismissed any thoughts of rustiness with a comprehensive 3-0 win away to Dundela.
The Invermen, who haven’t had a competitive game for three weeks, stay in third place after Saturday’s win, while the Duns ended the game in bottom spot.
“They gave us everything that we asked of them, and I thought all of them were on their game today,” McAlinden said after the match.
“Sometimes you have one or two not quite at it, but that wasn’t the case today. They clearly all looked after themselves over Christmas.
“It was especially pleasing after a few weeks without a game, so they’re continuing to answer questions we ask of them.”
Larne were beginning to build up a head of steam shortly before they broke the deadlock on 24 minutes.
Paul Maguire was brought down on the turn inside the box and dusted himself down to slot home the opening goal from the penalty spot.
The lead was doubled just four minutes later as defender Stuart McMullan converted Stuart King’s corner from close range, despite the ball appearing to run out of play in the build-up.
King went close to adding number three a minute into the second half but his free-kick came back off the face of the crossbar.
Maguire had a good opportunity to add his second of the day but his side-footed effort from James McCabe’s cross was too close to Sargeant.
The forward made sure of the points when he was brought down inside the box for the second time, with 11 minutes remaining. This time home skipper Andrew Ferguson saw red for denying a goal-scoring opportunity, as Maguire doubled his tally for the day.
Dundela: Sergeant, Thompson (Simms), Ferguson, Keenan (Murphy), Owens, Gourley, Jones, Herron, Jackson (McClelland), Halliday, Collins. Unused subs: McCain, Clarke.
Larne: Connolly, Irvine (Todd), Smith (Robinson), Reynolds, McClean, McMullan, E Gillan, G Gillan, King, Maguire, McCabe. Unused subs: C Gillan, S Scott, Stitt