Ten-man Glenavon will feel they deserved at least a share of the spoils against Glentoran on Tuesday night.
It wasn’t to be though, as the Glens edged out a 3-2 victory, holding on by the skin of their teeth.
New signing Tiarnan Mulvenna came on during the second-half, bagged his first Glenavon goal and came close to levelling the scoring late on but Glens keeper Aaron Hogg beat him to the ball.
It would certainly have been a warranted point for the plucky 10 men, who held their own after Andy Coleman was sent off on just 29 minutes.
He had been rightly given a straight red card after coming out of his area and instinctively reacting to push away Jordan Stewart’s goal-bound effort.
At that stage it looked like there would be no way back for Glenavon, who had already gone a goal behind thanks to Glentoran’s new signing Curtis Allen’s third goal in two games. His sweetly-struck effort flew across Coleman into the bottom corner after Stephen McAlorum’s cross-field ball found the forward.
It could have been 1-1 but Ciaran Martyn’s shot was superbly tipped round the post by birthday-boy Hogg. That was just 60 seconds before Coleman’s dismissal, after which Brian McCaul went into the Glenavon goal.
He went on to concede two but, all-in-all, he didn’t do too badly, dealing with any Glentoran crosses and the majority of their shots on goal.
Allen should have tested him early in the second half but his header flew wide of goal.
The ten men then drew level, even if it was only for a matter of seconds.
After Gareth McKeown had a rifled free-kick deflected just past the top corner, Guy Bates was brought down outside the box. It was Kyle Neill who hit this one and he couldn’t have struck it any sweeter, curling his effort round the wall into the bottom corner against his former side.
Suspended Gary Hamilton had barely retaken his seat before his side were behind again, the impressive Marcus Kane’s shot squirming past the unfortunate McCaul and going in off the post.
Jay Magee then headed home Stewart’s corner as Glentoran looked to have the game sewn up at 3-1.
However, the ten-men made it a very nervy finish when Mulvenna tapped over the line after Shane McCabe’s shot fell to the substitute.
He could even have grabbed that elusive equaliser, as could Andy McGrory but his finish from a tight angle went wide to ensure it was another frustrating evening for Glenavon despite a positive performance.
Glenavon: Coleman, Neill, Murphy, Marshall, McKeown, McCaul, McCabe, Martyn, McGrory, Rainey, Bates. Subs: McCallion, Lindsay (McKeown 85), Kilmartin, Patton (Rainey 62), Mulvenna (Murphy 69).
Glentoran: Hogg, Garrett, Hill, Birney, Addis, Kane, McAlorum, Henderson, Allen, Stewart, Boyd. Subs: McGuigan (Hill 73), Bradley, Magee (McAlorum 46), Clarke, Morris.
Referee: Andrew Davey.