Derry secured first win in six games, to see off North West neighbours Finn Harps.
Striker Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe started the scoring just after the half-hour before Ciaron Harkin’s stole the show by scoring a hat-trick and became the first Derry player to score a treble in this fixture since Alex Krstic in 1987.
Derry should have done better on nine minutes but centre-back Josh Kerr blasted well over from close range, after Peter Burke could only parry away Greg Sloggett’s initial header.
Harps first chance came just before the half-hour mark as Tony McNamee’s long throw-in was only half punched clear by Peter Cherrie, but fortunately for the City keeper Daniel O’Reilly’s follow-up header was deflected wide by Eoin Toal.
City took the lead on 32 minutes as Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe’s left wing cross to the back post would have picked out David Parkhouse, but for O’Reilly’s push in the back, referee Tomas Connolly pointed to the spot.
After the Harps protests were waved away, Ogedi-Uzokwe’s awful penalty was saved by Burke, but the man on loan from Colchester, made no mistake with the rebound blasing home.
Ogedi-Uzokwe thought he scored a stunning second on 42 minutes but his overhead kick was ruled out by referee Connolly.
Derry did add a second moments later in outstanding fashion as Ciaron Harkin’s thunderbolt free-kick from 20 yards, gave Burke no chance as it fizzed into the keeper’s top left hand corner.
The Brandywell men should have a had a second penalty but referee Connolly felt Ogedi-Uzokwe’s fell too easily inside the box. Ogedi-Uzokwe was back in the thick of things in the second phase of the move, but his shot was cleared off the line by Sam Todd.
Harkin netted his second of the night on 67 minutes as the midfielder was quickest to reaction to the loose ball inside the Harps box, blasting home from 16 yards.
Harps went close to scoring a consolation goal on 88 minutes but substitute Nathan Boyle, saw his shot well saved by Cherrie.Deep into stoppage time Harkin completed his hat-trick firing home at the back post after Aidy Delap’s cross picked him out.
Derry City: Cherrie, McDonagh, Toal, Kerr, Coll; Bruna (S McNamee 81), Sloggett; B McNamee (Malone 76), Bruna; Parkhouse (Delap 74), Ogedi-Uzokwe.
Finn Harps: Burke, Deasy (Boyle 56), Todd, Cowan, O’Reilly; Russell, Coyle, McNamee (Borg 56), McAleer; Cretaro (Place 76), Boyd.
Referee: Tomas Connolly (Dublin).