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Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Round Up Saturday 10th March 2018

Monday, 12 March 2018

On Tuesday 6th March the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup Semi-Final game, featuring Campbell College, Belfast and Methodist College, Belfast took place at the Kingspan Stadium.

Campbell College booked their place in the 2018 Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup final thanks to an impressive win 17-8 over Belfast rivals Methodist College that was built on a resolute defensive display. Contested in perfect playing conditions on a mild day at Kingspan Stadium, there was very little between the sides in the opening quarter of the game. When Campbell were penalised at the breakdown in the fifteenth minute Methody full-back, Ethan Mcllroy, slotted over the resultant goal kick to get his side off the mark with a 3-0 lead. In the 21st minute Tom O’Doherty, an early replacement for the injured Kevin McNaboe, made a superb break through the midfield but was halted by an excellent cover tackle from Campbell full-back, Conor Rankin, less than five metres from the try line. While Methody recycled play to the right the Campbell rear guard was able to recover and turn over possession before clearing their lines.On twenty eight minutes Campbell made their first real venture into the Methody 22m area. They forced the Methodist College team into conceding a penalty which Conor Rankin confidently dispatched to level the sides up with the scoreboard reading 3-3. Five minutes later a loose Methody pass at half-way was intercepted and, following several phases of patient build up, Campbell winger, Rex Tinsley, was released to score in the left corner. Conor Rankin’s superb touchline conversion extended his side’s lead to 10-3 at the break.

Eight minutes after the restart Methody launched the first meaningful attack when their hooker, Daniel Humphreys, broke away. However, once again the Campbell College defence scrambled back to recover possession. On forty eight minutes Campbell College engineered a powerful lineout maul, making twenty metres, before being pulled down just before the try line. From the resultant 5 metre scrum, play was shifted left before a series of pick and drives from the Campbell forwards eventually broke through the Methody defence. The Campbell College captain, John McKee, eventually touched down for a try which Conor Rankin once again converted from the sideline, to make it a 17-3 lead for his team. In the final five minutes Methody piled on the pressure and were eventually rewarded with the try that their performance deserved. Scrum-half and captain, Matthew Neill, squeezed over from close range to touch down for an unconverted try to leave the scoreboard reading 17-8 in favour of the Campbell College, Belfast team at the no-side whistle.

Campbell College:

(15-9): Conor Rankin, Will Davis, Jamie Macartney, Ben Power, Rex Tinsley, Oscar Yandall, Dara Gaskin;

(1-8): John McKee (Captain), Harry Jenkins, Patrick McAlpine, Oisin Kiernan, John Harrison, Jack Stinson, Sam Robinson, Tobi Olaniyan.

Replacements: John Gildea, Matthew Carlisle, Matthew Poor, James Johnston, Jamie Brennan, Lucas Yandall, Jack McAllister, Kieran Robertson.

Methodist College:

(15-9): Ethan McIlroy, Conor Scollan, Kevin McNaboe, John Fletcher, Chris Larmour, Thomas Armstrong, Matthew Neill (Captain);

(1-8): Daire Morelli, Daniel Humphreys, Ben Crangle, Max Lyttle, Ben Gourley, Conor Kelly, Samuel Bernard, Jonah Bingham.

Replacements: Patrick Johnston, Tom Millar, Luke Sullivan, Adam Reid, Jack Watson, Louis Lowry, Tom O’Doherty, Robbie Armstrong.

On Wednesday 7th March the re-scheduled Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup Semi-Final game, featuring Royal Belfast Academical Institution and Royal School, Armagh, took place at the Kingspan Stadium.

The Royal School Armagh players have booked their place in the 2018 Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup Final, thanks to a thrilling 26-22 victory over reigning champions, Royal Belfast Academical Institution, at the Kingspan Stadium.

The Royal School Armagh, who were bidding to reach their first Ulster Schools’ Cup semi-final since 2004, started the game in determined fashion, immediately forcing a knock-on from the kick-off. On eight minutes the Armagh men had the first scoring opportunity of the game, but centre Zac Thompson’s well struck penalty from near the half-way mark fell just to the right of the posts. Four minutes later Armagh did get off the mark. On their first attempt, the ball was knocked forward off a scrum strike. However, Belfast Inst were unable to clear outside their 22m area. From the resultant lineout, the ball was fed to Zac Thompson’s midfield partner, Matthew Reaney, who powered through to touch down under the posts. Zac Thompson fired over the simple conversion to give his team a 7-0 lead. On fifteen minutes Armagh added their second try in what was their next venture into the Belfast Inst 22m area, when their energetic hooker and captain, Jack Treanor, smashed his way over the whitewash. Zac Thompson added to give the RS Armagh team a 14-0 lead. The Royal Belfast Acasdemical Institution team then lost their inspirational skipper, David McCann, to injury after twenty six minutes. However, his side did get their opening score through a Robin McIlveen penalty to reduce the deficit to 14-3. Belfast Inst continued to grow into the game and their impressive scrum-half, Niall Armstrong, found space off a scrum to dart in behind the posts. Robin McIlveen added the conversion to see the Belfast Inst deficit reduced to 14-10 at the break.

Seven minutes after the restart, Armagh thought they had got over for their third try but Nicolas Jennings was held up over the line, before replacement, Archie McAlpine, also suffered the same fate off the next play. However, it was third time lucky for the Armagh men as their outstanding No 8, Ryan O’Neill, picked off the back of the scrum to drive over and touch down for a well-deserved try. Zac Thompson added the extras to increase the Royal School, Armagh lead to 21-10.The Royal Belfast Academical Institution team responded again on forty eight minutes with their forwards making some big carries inside the Armagh 22m area. Quick ruck ball enabled their half backs to shift play to their left winger, Jude Postlethwaite, who managed to dive over just inside the corner flag to tuch down for an unconverted try to take the score to 15-21. On fifty six minutes, and for a third time, Armagh were held up over the line. From the resultant 5m scrum, a strike right was halted by the Belfast Inst defence. However, play was quickly moved left for winger, Nicholas Jennings, to run in for an unconverted try which increased the RS Armagh lead to 26-15.The Belfast Inst hooker, Connor McCormick, then set the game up for a grandstand finish as he powered over for a converted try with just five minutes remaining, bringing the score-line to 22-26. With the game in the balance as the clock ticked past seventy minutes, Belfast Inst piled on the pressure. With RS Armagh forced to concede a penalty on their 5m line, Belfast Inst took the quick tap and make a drive for the line. However, the Armagh defence managed to hold up the ball, and in doing so, held out for a memorable 26-22 win.

TEAMS:

Royal Belfast Academical Institution:

(15-9): Bradley McNamara, Jamie Mullan, Robin McIlveen, Angus Adair, Jude Postlethwaite, David Lyttle, Niall Armstrong;

(1-8): Ethan Sloan, Connor McCormick, Jared Wait, Daniel Eakin, Tim Lyons, AJ Hussell, Jack Magee, David McCann (Captain).

Replacements: Rory Adair, Robert Curry, Stuart McAuley, Tom Lavery, Alexander Weir, Marco Manso, Kyle McComiskey, James Heyburn.

Royal School, Armagh:

(15-9): Michael Campbell, Oliver Webb, Zac Thompson, Matthew Reaney, Nicholas Jennings, Romain Morrow, Charlie Worth;

(1-8): Jack Chapman, Jack Treanor (Captain), Jonny Agnew, Ryan Finlay, Samuel King, Aaron Woods, Graham Crawford, Ryan O’Neill.

Replacements: Sam Rainey, Adam Edgar, Archie McAlpine, Jude Roberts, Josh King, Alex Johnston, Callum Whiteside, Peter Taylor.

These results now mean the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup will feature the Royal School, Armagh team v Campbell College, Belfast at the Kingspan Stadium on Monday 19th March at 3-00pm.

On the same afternoon there were two postponed Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Subsidiary Shield Semi-Final games played.

Dalriada School hosted Ballyclare High School in a closely contested game the Ballyclare High School team won by 15-12. Dalriada School had taken a 12-0 lead into the break through tries from Luke Pollock and Henry Ross, one of which was converted by James McCormick.

The Ballyclare High School team mounted a second half revival in the second half. Owen Lockhart scored two tries, one of which was converted by Adam Clarke, to draw the scores level at 12-12 going into the final few minutes of the game. The Ballyclare High School team forced the Dalriada team into conceding a penalty. Adam Clarke slotted the kick to secure the 15-12 win for the Ballyclare High School team.

Down High School hosted Coleraine Grammar School and had built up a 21-7 lead by the interval before going on to record a 41-7 victory. Ronan Patterson, Jack Carlisle and Robin Wilson scored the first half tries for the Down High School team with Greg Hutley adding three conversions. The Coleraine Grammar School points came through a try from Hugo Mawhinney which was converted by Pierce Crowe.

Greg Hutley converted a penalty opportunity early in the second half to increase the Down High School lead to 24-7. Alex Martin, Andrew McCoubrey and Ronan Patterson then ran in tries, one of which Greg Hutley converted, to secure the 41-7 win for the Down High School team.

Ballyclare High School will now meet Down High School in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Subsidiary Shield. This game will take place at the Queen’s University Sports Arena on Wednesday 14th March at 2-30pm.

In the second Semi-Final of the Danske Bank 3rdxv Cup Methodist College, Belfast 3rdxv played Methodist College, Belfast 4thxv in a game the Methodist College 3rdxv won by 20-10.

This result means that Royal Belfast Academical Institution Colts will play Methodist College, Belfast 3rdxv in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup Final. This Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup Final has been scheduled to take place on Wednesday 14th March at Campbell College.

In the postponed Quarter-Final game in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate Ballymena Academy 3rdxv hosted Bangor Grammar School 3rdxv. The Ballymena Academy team won the game by 20-0. The winners will now play Campbell College, Belfast 4thxv in the semi-final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate.

In the postponed Semi-Final game in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate Sullivan Upper School played Royal School, Dungannon and won the game by 49-0.

On Thursday 8th March the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Final took place at Campbell College, Belfast when Belfast Royal Academy played Portadown College. Belfast Royal Academy won the game by 26-14. The Belfast Royal Academy team had built up an 18-7 lead by the interval with two tries from Daniel Logan and Nicky Ryan, one of which was converted by Harry Warke. Harry was also successful with two penalty kicks. The Portadown College points came through a try from Ryan Neill which was converted by Adam Speers.

Early in the second half the Portadown College team reduced the deficit to 18-14 when Brett Fleck ran in for a try which Adam Speers converted. The Belfast Royal Academy team then scored an unconverted try through Tom Stewart to go into a 23-14 lead. A late Harry Warke penalty then secured the 26-14 win for the Belfast Royal Academy team.

Following the game, Sir Nigel Hamilton, a former President of the Ulster Branch, IRFU, presented Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl finalists medals to the players from both teams and the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl to the captain of the Belfast Royal Academy team. Sir Nigel congratulated both teams on reaching the final and providing such an exciting game of schoolboy rugby for the many spectators to watch. He thanked the referee and his assistants for the positive manner in which they controlled the game, thanked the Danske Bank for their continued sponsorship of Ulster Schools’ Rugby and thanked the Principal, Governors and staff at Campbell College, Belfast for the provision of facilities and hosting the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Final.

Meanwhile, at the Shaw’s Bridge Sports Complex the Royal Belfast Academical Institution 2ndxv and the Methodist College, Belfast 2ndxv competed in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup. The Methodist College, Belfast 2ndxv won the game with a hard earned 19-8 victory.

Following the game, Stephen Elliott, Senior Vice-President of the Ulster Branch, IRFU, presented Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup finalists medals to the players from both teams and the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup to the captain of the Methodist College team. Stephen congratulated both teams on reaching the final and providing such an exciting game of schoolboy rugby for the many spectators to watch. He thanked the referee and his assistants for the positive manner in which they controlled the game, thanked the Danske Bank for their continued sponsorship of Ulster Schools’ Rugby and members of Cooke/Instonian’s for the provision of facilities at the Shaw’s Bridge Sports Complex and hosting the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup Final.

Close by, at Belfast Harlequin’s RFC, Sullivan Upper School and Royal School, Armagh played in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate. The Royal School, Armagh team won the game by 25-0.

Following the game, Kenny Hooks, former Ulster and Ireland winger, presented Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate finalists medals to the players from both teams and the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate to the captain of the Royal School, Armagh team. Kenny congratulated both teams on reaching the final and providing such an exciting game of schoolboy rugby for the many spectators to watch. He thanked the referee and his assistants for the positive manner in which they controlled the game, thanked the Danske Bank for their continued sponsorship of Ulster Schools’ Rugby and thanked the members of the Belfast Harlequin’s RFC for the provision of facilities and hosting the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Plate Final.

There are four Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ finals on next week.

On Monday 12th March Coleraine Grammar School 2ndxv will play Portadown College 2nd xv in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate. This game will take place at the Belfast Royal Academy grounds at Roughfort at 3-00pm.

The Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Shield Final will be played at the Kingspan Stadium on Tuesday 13th March when Campbell College, Belfast will play Ballymena Academy at 2-30pm.

The Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup Final will take place at Campbell College, Belfast on Wednesday 14th March when Royal Belfast Academical Institution Colts xv will pay Methodist College, Belfast at 3-00pm.

The Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Subsidiary Shield Final will take place at the Queen’s University Arena on Wednesday 14th March when Down High School will play Ballyclare High School at 2-30pm.