Institute laboured to victory at Gordon PF, Lurgan but the result was enough to move the young Colts level on points with league leaders Linfield Rangers whose game against Cliftonville was postponed on a rain disrupted afternoon.
The Drumahoe boys were below par but they still creating the majority of the chances and deserved to take home all three points. It took half an hour for the visitors to create the first real chance of the game when Alex Pomeroy latched on to a ball in the box before being sent sprawling by a defenders challenge. Shane Brennan stepped up to confidently dispatch the resulting spot kick into the net to give Stute the advantage. Five minutes later Matty Lynch saw two efforts cleared off the line in quick succession but within a matter of minutes the home side were level as Stute lost possession in their own half of the pitch and a Glenavon midfielder’s speculative shot crept in at the bottom corner. Lynch almost restored the lead for Institute just before the break but his shot drifted narrowly wide of an upright.
Institute did regain the lead six minutes into the second period following a swift counter-attack. A Glenavon corner was headed clear and Brennan, latching on to the loose ball, found Caillin McLaughlin whose pass set Pomeroy, who had raced from his own area, through on goal. The big striker outpaced the covering defenders but his initial effort was blocked by the home ‘keeper. As the ball deflected high into the air Pomeroy steadied himself before showing great technique to volley the dropping ball into the unguarded net. Stute pressed for a third goal to make the game safe but were wasteful as firstly Caillin McLaughlin sliced an effort wide of the mark before poor final passes, on two separate occasions, saw attacks break down when the Drumahoe boys were in good positions. The final five minutes saw a few nervous moments as Glenavon threw everything forward in search of an equaliser but the Colts defence held on to secure a hard fought victory.
Institute Colts: Eoin Matthewson, Jamie McLaughlin, Cal Ryan, Dylan Forbes, Ethan Canning, Ethan Sweeney, Caillin McLaughlin, Aaron Jarvis, Alex Pomeroy, Shane Brennan, Matty Lynch. Subs: Diarmuid McDermott, Kyle McGuinnes, Cory Hill, Conor McCourt, Reece Adair.