In the end it was a tale of two penalties, one missed and one scored, which helped Coleraine to a third straight win and condemned Carrick Rangers to a fifth successive defeat on their travels.
It cannot be often that the goalkeeper in a team which has won 3-0 is man of the match but Gareth Deane's first-half penalty save and two excellent stops in as many minutes in the last 10 were matchwinners, just as much as the goals from Ben Doherty, Stuart Nixon and Eoin Bradley.
The latter two were both introduced at half-time after a first half dominated by the visitors but, within nine minutes of the resumption, Bradley had won the penalty and he completed the scoring in stoppage time with a goal-line tap-in after Nixon's deflected shot.
The decisive second goal in the 86th minute came when former Gers striker Nixon converted Jamie Glackin's cross in a lightning-quick break as Carrick pushed for what would have been a deserved equaliser.
But both managers accepted it was a harsh scoreline on Rangers, who have now lost all eight of their Premiership trips to The Showgrounds.
"We knew what we were going to get from Carrick," said Coleraine boss Oran Kearney afterwards.
"Niall (Currie) has them well organised and they caused us problems in the first half when we weren't quite at it.
"But we made a couple of substitutions at the interval and got the impact we wanted. Skinner (Bradley) caused havoc and Stuart got a lot of joy as well. We had a 10-minute spell when it looked as if we would score with every attack but didn't take any of them and so there was always the possibility of a sucker punch and Gareth had to make several good saves to keep us 1-0 ahead.
"But he did the same in the wins against Warrenpoint and Dungannon and he has gone from strength to strength. He is now playing games week in, week out and he has really responded and shown what a top keeper he is."
After the horror collapse against Glentoran in their last match three weeks back, this was a much more encouraging display from Carrick.
"Obviously disappointed by the result but really pleased with the performance," said Currie. "I thought we carried a threat all day, defended well for most of the game and it was not a 3-0 game.
"We threw everything at them in the last 10-15 minutes but young Deane made great saves from Lloyd Anderson and Jonny Frazer to keep them in the game and, pushing forward, we left ourselves open."
Both penalties were soft awards but they cancelled each other out, except in the end product; Deane diving to his right to palm away Caolan Loughran's 36th-minute attempt after Jordan Gibson was pushed, but Doherty gave Aaron Hogg no chance after Mark Surgenor's foul.
The one disappointment for Coleraine on the day was the sight of Doherty being carried off after 70 minutes with a broken collarbone which the player last night confirmed will require surgery.