Irish Premiership: Coleraine 4-0 Portadown

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Coleraine 4-0 Portadown

Darren McCauley scored a hat-trick as Coleraine subjected Portadown to another resounding defeat and continued their own impressive Premiership form.

McCauley fired home from 10 yards out in the 42nd minute and then a James McLaughlin glancing header from Garth Falconer's cross made it 2-0 after 48.

McCauley executed a delicate lob over Billy Brennan on 57 and completed his treble with a right-foot finish on 75.

The fourth-placed Bannsiders are now unbeaten in eight league games.

In contrast, the Ports, who indicated on Thursday that Ronnie McFall's reign as manager was approaching an end, have now lost their last six fixtures in all competitions, including four straight defeats in the league.

Darren McCauley

Coleraine signalled their intentions early on as McLaughlin lobbed Brennan but the ball bounced off the top of the bar.

At the other end, Michael Doherty, the Northern Ireland Football Writers' Player of the Month for October, guided Ross Redman's deflected shot wide and also made a fingertip save to deny Gary Twigg's low effort.

McCauley broke the deadlock with a fine finish after good build-up play by Ian Parkhill and Jamie McGonigle.

Two goals in the early stages of the second period saw Oran Kearney's side assume complete control and McCauley increased their lead after going past a defender, cutting inside and shooting in from the edge of the box.

Coleraine manager Oran Kearney: "Portadown started well and then we took over. Credit to our lads. It was a great performance.

"We have some good experienced players in our squad, and some very promising young lads. We are in fourth place on merit and we want to stay there."