A hat-trick from winger Mark Patton helped ease Glenavon to a 6-0 victory over PSNI in the League Cup on Monday evening.
It was just reward for a great display – Patton’s work-rate impressive and quality on the ball proven by his finishes.
Striker Guy Bates also bagged his fourth goal in four games while Ciaran Martyn and James Singleton were also on the scoresheet.
It was all too easy in the end for a Glenavon side that had six changes from the team that drew with Coleraine. New signing Shane McCabe made his first appearance of his second spell at the club and looked to add some bite to the side’s midfield.
It didn’t take long for the Blues to get into their stride as Ciaran Martyn slammed home the opener just four minutes in.
A neat exchange between strike duo David Rainey and Guy Bates opened the defence, Bates squared to Martyn and he smashed a first time shot past PSNI stopper Matthew Quinn.
It could easily have been two on 21 minutes when Rainey tried a 20-yard curler that would have been a close match to his strike against Coleraine. This time, however, the keeper was match to his effort.
Guy Bates was next to see his effort saved but on 30 minutes, he turned provider. Rainey’s neat chip set him clear of the defence, he rounded the keeper and unselfishly squared the ball to Mark Patton for the simplest of tap-ins.
In the second half, the Blues went up another gear and they really looked like scoring at any opportunity.
They even managed to bag two in a minute shortly after the re-start. Firstly Mark Patton’s in-swinging free-kick was headed across goal by James Singleton and Guy Bates was on hand to bag a deserved goal.
Seconds later, Singleton got on the score-sheet himself when he glanced a header in from Gary Hamilton’s telling cross to make it 4-0.
The pick of the goals came soon after as Patton bagged a delicious second. Cutting in from the right side, the left-footer curled a superb effort past Quinn and into the opposite top corner.
It was a delightful goal and on 72 minutes, the former Portadown man bagged his hat-trick. A long ball forward by new signing Shane McCabe was seized on by the swift winger and nicked past the exposed keeper Quinn.
At the other end, John Connolly made his first Glenavon appearance between the sticks. For much of the game though, he may as well have been in the stand. He was forced into only one save as he stopped Peter Steele’s second half effort.
It was an accomplished performance from Glenavon as they showed just why they’re two leagues above their opponents. Six of the best and onwards to Dungannon.
GLENAVON: Connolly, McCallion, Lindsay, Singleton, Marshall, McCade, Martyn (McIlveen 73), Patton, Hamilton, Bates (Mitchell 59), Rainey.
Subs: Neill, Murphy, Kilmartin, Mitchell (Neill 67), McIlveen
PSNI: Quinn, Scott (Holden 57), Robb (Gray 57), Brennan, McCrory, Berry, McWilliams, N Anderson, Steele, M Anderson, Leitch (MacAuley 73).
Unused Subs: Holden, Lawson, MacAuley, Gray, Hunter.