Tonight at the rain-touched Riverside Stadium, Paul Kee’s Institute hosted Tobermore United in the semi-final of the North West Senior Cup.
The Sky Blues sailed through to the final of this competition last year, before being beaten by underdogs Newbuildings United, but tonight they proved easy winners, and now face Moyola in this year’s final.
Stephen O’Flynn put his side into the lead on 32 minutes, pulling the ball onto his left foot, before striking at goal from considerable range, the ball floating into the back of the Tobermore goal past net-minder Gareth Maguire.
The game continued on, with Stute maintaining their dominance, and on the stroke of half-time, defender Dean Curry blasted home after a scurry inside the box, to double the lead for the Drumahoe outlet.
The scoreline remained 2-0 at half-time, but the second-half had much more action to come.
For the first period of the second stage, little noteworthy incidents occured, but Stute were piling on the pressure, and on 79 minutes their workrate paid off with Ronan Doherty scoring a great goal past the United keeper Maguire.
The win was confirmed at this point, but still Stute continued to work hard to increase the lead, and this was made easier when Tobermore defender Stuart Forrest was sent off for a sliding challenge which the referee deemed late despite his disputes.
In the final seconds of the game Stute won a freekick on the edge of the area, and playmaker Robbie Hume stepped up to take it, swerving the ball around the wall into the top, hand corner of the net, the keeper left with no chance – the scoreline cemented at 4-0 as the final whistle blew.
Institute’s next match sees them travel to Belfast in order to play Crusaders in the league, and a supporters’ bus will leave the city at 6pm on Friday for anyone who wishes to attend.