Irish Premiership: A Curtis Allen double fires Glentoran to away win over Newry
Glentoran boosted their European hopes as a Curtis Allen double gave them a 2-0 win over relegation-threatened Newry City at the Showgrounds.
Allen stroked home the opener on 22 minutes and pounced for his second from close range 19 minutes later.
Darragh Noonan had the hosts' only effort of note when he hit the crossbar with a header in between Allen's goals.
The Glens are now four points ahead of Institute in seventh while Newry remain three ahead of Ards at the bottom.
The North Down outfit are away to Institute on Saturday and both sides will have two Irish Premiership games left after this weekend as they bid to avoid finishing bottom and being relegated automatically.
Mick McDermott's Glentoran, meanwhile, have tightened their grip on the Europa League play-off spot, which finishing seventh brings.
In a game of few chances at the Showgrounds, Robbie McDaid had just fired well over for the visitors when his strike partner opened the scoring.
Darren Murray dispossessed a hesitant Thomas McCann and slipped a pass to Allen, who stepped inside Noonan cleverly before calmly rolling a right-foot shot into the bottom corner.
Darren Mullen's side had won their last two league outings but, while they started the match brightly, rarely threatened Elliott Morris in the Glentoran goal.
Their only major chance fell to Noonan who rose highest to meet a Josh Durnin corner in the 35th minute, but his header looped on to the top of the Glentoran crossbar.
Allen doubled the visitors' lead on 41 minutes, displaying his predatory instincts to react fastest in the six-yard box to poke home a Gavin Peers flick-on from a long Murray throw-in.
Allen was twice denied a hat-trick by saves from Andrew Coleman in the second half, with the experienced Newry keeper easily collecting a free-kick from distance and then showing good reactions to save a low shot with his feet.
Murray also came close to extending the lead in the second period, shooting tamely at the keeper after a superb piece of juggling in the box and then going just wide with a header in the closing minutes.
Newry are away to Stute in their penultimate Premiership game on Tuesday night, while the Glens welcome Warrenpoint Town to the Oval.