Carrick boss Gary Haveron praised his side’s battling spirit as they succumbed to yet another Danske Bank Premiership defeat. But the Rangers manager also bemoaned a string of defensive mistakes which has seen his side go without a league win since the 3-1 success at Ballinamallard on September 12.
On Saturday, Oran Kearney’s Bannsiders - one of the form teams in the top flight - showed no sympathy for Carrick’s plight, moving up to second with second-half strikes from Lyndon Kane and Jamie McGonigle.
Haveron’s side kept going and almost snatched something from the game after Aaron Harmon had pulled a one back with his first of the season on 81 minutes.
Post-match, a frustrated Haveron said: “It was another gutsy performance by us but we’ve ended up with no points. That’s been the story of our season, unfortunately.
“Coleraine are on the crest of a wave, momentum is really with them and they got the breaks. But at the other end we’re not getting the breaks; it’s what happens when you’re down there.
“The boys could have thrown the towel in at 2-0, but they rallied and ... were unlucky not to come away with something.”
He added: “We had numerous chances to stop the first goal. Lyndon Kane picks the ball up in his own half and there’s no way he should be able to get into our 18-yard box. There was two missed tackles, we should deal with the cross when it comes in, it’s a mistimed clearance, but the lad finished it well.
“The ball fell to him, it could have gone anywhere, but our boys have to clear their lines.
“I watched the Coleraine and Ballymena match in midweek and Steven Douglas showed exactly how you defend those types of situations: you put the ball into Row Z and ask questions later.
“Their second goal is a dubious handball. Doyle flicked the ball on, he got caught a bit underneath it, and he says, clear as day, their player (McGonigle) handles the ball before finishing it.
“We rallied and pulled one back through Harmon, but he probably should have got an equaliser for us just before the end.”