Rory Donnelly bagged a double as Cliftonville stormed to a 4-2 victory over Glenavon at Solitude this afternoon.
Ahead when Donnelly opened the scoring early on, the Reds were pegged back when a deflected Conor McCloskey drive drew the visitors level ahead of Andy Mitchell putting the Lurgan Blues in front.
Stephen Garrett’s equaliser fired Cliftonville’s belief ahead of Donnelly making it 3-2 before Conor McDonald put the seal on a superb result.
Cliftonville edged in front as early as the fifth minute when, after Aaron Donnelly had done well to cut out a dangerous ball over the top at one end, Levi Ives delivered one at the other and Rory Donnelly raced through to confidently fire beyond goalkeeper Jonny Tuffey.
Glenavon levelled just after the half-hour mark in fortunate circumstances when McCloskey’s shot was deflected into his own net off Jamie Harney, whose outstretched boot lifted the ball well out of the reach of Brian Neeson.
The visitors then moved in front a couple of minutes into the second half after Mitchell guided Andy Hall’s cross home from close range, but Garrett equalised for the Reds moments before the hour with a deft header after Ryan Catney had found him with a cross from the right.
Two goals in five minutes later in the game then made sure Cliftonville claimed the points.
Donnelly doubled his tally on 78 minutes with a tap-in after Tuffey had repelled an effort from McDonald, who would go on to wrap things up after being found by a great ball from Ryan Curran.
Cliftonville: Neeson, McGovern, Ives, Harney, Garrett, R Donnelly, McDonald, Catney, McConnell, Gormley, A Donnelly. Subs: Breen, R Curran (McConnell, 71 mins), Rocks, Lavery, Maguire (Garrett, 90 mins), McMenamin, Casey.