United hosted Rochdale at Frenchfield Park in the third of their Central League Cup fixtures on Wednesday afternoon, in a competition that has been plagued by postponements.
Goals from Cedwyn Scott (2), Taylor Charters (2) and Sam Fishburn gave United a 5-0 victory at Spotland just before Christmas, complementing the 2-1 away win at Fleetwood in the first of these round-robin fixtures.
Superb early work from Toure saw him take a pass from Barnes wide on the right. He mesmerised Dunne with a stepover before clipping a cross into the mix. Charters was there, but the slightest of touches from Shaughnessy took it away from his head.
Rochdale responded with a slick move with an away trialist moving into space as the spare man in midfield. He was spotted by Wright and he took the ball on with an angled run towards the box. His drilled effort was blocked by Wilson.
Striker Cedwyn Scott was a whisker away on six minutes when a long ball over the top bounced on the 18-yard line. He used strength to shield it, and his volley was crisp as he struck it on the full. Wade was beaten but it whisked just an inch too high.
The lively Toure was involved again just before the quarter hour when he made a run through the middle. Furman picked him out, and the big forward created space to shoot when he dropped a shoulder as he surged into the area. Wade stayed big and he made a vital save as a blistering effort came his way.
The Blues created an excellent opening midway through the half when Furman reacted with urgency to get onto a weak clearance. He had Scott and Barnes in support, and Toure created more panic with good movement. Furman showed again with a neat reverse pass, and a low cross skipped across the surface, inviting Charters to shoot. He opted to try to guide it into the bottom corner but his attempt, from 16-yards, crept the wrong side of the upright.
Midfielder Dean Furman kept snapping at heels and he caused havoc in the box when the away team dallied on a clearance. Possesion was robbed, and a back heel found Scott with his back to goal. Shaughnessy recovered to make an important block.
United took the lead just before the half hour when Charters stepped across to win a tackle, and then bring Furman into play. He released Scott, and a powerful run into the area left two in his wake. He looked up, and he aimed to pick out Furman who had followed the move. The unfortunate Conor Shaughnessy stuck out a boot to stop it and he watched in horror as it bobbled past Wade and over the line.
Charlie Birch sparked another attack as the Blues regained the ball from the kick off, and Furman raced clear to take the pass in his stride. He carried it forward before letting fly, but Wade spread himself to beat it away.
The Dale found their feet on 35 minutes whern Wright and Grant bounced off each other. The trialist asked for it, and he did well to weave past Wilson when he was quickly closed down. Norman dived full length but the ball crashed into the side netting.
United came again when Toure intercepted deep inside his own half. He got his head down to go past two challenges as he hit the afterburners, and he was suddenly inside the visiting box. He unselfishly centred on the run and Scott showed a neat first touch to bring it under control. The defender did enough to protect the target and the keeper.
A second trialist had a header on target from an outswinging corner as Dale asked questions ahead of the break, with Wright also close as he contested the follow up cross. His volley was goal bound until McDonald intervened.
The dangerous attacking trialist made another chance when he looked after the ball before finding McLaughlin on the overlap. The right back cut inside but his cross struck McDonald and spun over the bar.
Carlisle took the game to the visitors once again after the break and Toure had a punt from distance that needed to be diverted wide as it arrowed at the bottom corner.
But Dale had a couple of sighters, with Dunne swiping one wide, and they were back on terms on 55 minutes when they moved the ball along the line of the home area. The trialist front man put his foot through it and it flew into the top corner.
United kept probing and Furman was disappointed when he sliced a difficult volley over the bar from just inside the box.
Both sides looked to find a way through, but solid defending became the order of the half with chances suddenly at a premium.
But the Cumbrians were awarded a penalty on 73 minutes when press after press pushed the visitors deeped. Furman pounced on a heavy touch on the angle of the area and the referee pointed to the spot when Chorlton clipped the midfielder's heels. Taylor Charters picked his spot to put the Blues back in front.
A great save from Norman preserved the lead when Cullen was put through with just the stopper to beat. The connection was clean but the keeper did well to make the spread and the two-handed parry.
Charters had a stinger deflected high late in the day, when he tried his luck from 19-yards, and Norman was in action again at the other end when Scanlon bore down on goal. A dive at the feet of striker completed a second excellent save of the day.
Charlie Birch found himself in an advanced position as the clock ticked down, but his instinctive volley hit Chorlton and flew high. The corner was cleared as far as Lightfoot, and he volleyed low through bodies. Barnes saw it late as it zipped his way, and his touch wasn't quite enough to do the job.
Carlisle United - Shaughnessy (29 og), Charters (73 pen)
Rochdale - Trialist (55)
Carlisle United - Toure, Furman, Barnes
Rochdale - Trialist
Carlisle United - Norman, Barnes, Wilson, McDonald (Walton 70), Leslie, Birch, Lightfoot, Furman, Charters (c), Toure (Fishburn 56), Scott. Subs - Breeze.
Rochdale - Wade, McLaughlin (Chorlton 66), Shaughnessy (Cuillen 63), Mialkowski, Hopper (c), Trialist, Grant, Pye (Nock 82), Trialist, Dunne, Wright (Scanlon 82). subs - Kelly.
Referee - Mr Craig Chatten