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Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Round Up Saturday 28th February 2015.

Monday, 2 March 2015

The Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy final, featuring Lurgan College and Royal

School, Dungannon was played as a midweek fixture at Banbridge Academy on

Wednesday 25th February.

On the same afternoon there were games played in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’

2ndxv Cup, the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate as well as the Danske Bank

Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup and Plate.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy final the Royal School, Dungannon team

managed to retain the trophy they won last season when they defeated a very

committed Lurgan College team by 29-10. Superbly well hosted by Banbridge Academy,

the game was played in front of a great crowd of enthusiastic supporters from both

schools. It was the Lurgan College team that dominated the opening exchanges with

their pack matching the RS Dungannon pack in the set piece plays and their backs

willing to attack with the ball in hand at every opportunity. However, despite controlling

territory, as well as possession, early in the game the only points the Lurgan team was

able to register came from the boot of their scrum half, Scott Wilson. Scott was

successful with a penalty kick to give the Lurgan College team a 3-0 lead. The RS

Dungannon team recovered from their sluggish start and started to gain some

possession. A well worked “Sara” move, involving Thomas Downing, Patrick Forster and

Peter Doran at a lineout, paved the way for their hard working prop, Jonathan Black, to

run in for a try. Team captain, John Buckley, was successful with the conversion to give

his team a 7-3 lead. The Dungannon team was now starting to emerge as the stronger

of the two sides and Matthew Clarke capitalised on pressure on the Lurgan College

defence to grab a well-worked try. The conversion attempt was unsuccessful but the

RS Dungannon team had built up a 12-3 advantage going into half time.

The Dungannon team extended their lead to 19-3 early in the second half when

Jonathan Black touched down for his second try of the game. This try was converted

by John Buckley. The Lurgan College team then mounted something of a comeback and

might have scored a try when Stephen Logan and Jamie Hunter combined to almost

force their way through. Eventually they did when Jonny Hunter intercepted a loose

pass and raced clear to score under the Royal School, Dungannon posts. Robbie Norton

had the simple task of converting from straight in front and that reduced the deficit

to 19-10. However, the RS Dungannon team raised their game in the final quarter. A

series of strong scrums, five metres from the Lurgan College line, ended with Peter

Doran stretching over the whitewash for an unconverted try to increase the RS

Dungannon lead to 24-10. There was still time for another try and this time it was the

Dungannon full back, Aaron McCammon, who took advantage of good skills from his

inside backs. He finished off a flowing attack with an unconverted try to secure the

29-10 victory for the Royal School, Dungannon team.

 

Following the game the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy Runners-Up medals were

presented to the Lurgan College team by Bobby Stewart, Senior Vice-President of the

Ulster Branch, IRFU. Janice Milligan, representing the Danske Bank, then presented

the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy and medals to the Royal School, Dungannon

team, captained by John Buckley.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup, Sullivan Upper School defeated

Portadown College by 65-5. Meanwhile, Belfast Royal Academy defeated Regent House

by 32-0 in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate, Banbridge Academy 2ndxv lost by 22-

17 against the Royal School, Armagh 2ndxv, Friends’ School, Lisburn 2ndxv defeated

Cambridge House by 26-17 and Antrim Grammar School lost by 39-0 against Belfast

High School.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup, Down High School lost by 55-0 against

the Royal Belfast Academical Institution team.

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate Ballyclare High School travelled to play

the Coleraine Academical Institution 4thxv and came away with a 17-5 victory.

There was one Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup game played on Friday 27th when

Methodist College 4thxv defeated Banbridge Academy by 34-17.

 

There were two Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Shield semi-finals, two Danske

Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate semi-finals as well as the finals of the Danske

Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Bowl and Trophy competitions and two Danske Bank

Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup and 2ndxv Plate games played on Saturday 28th February.

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Shield semi-finals the Royal Belfast

Academical Institution team defeated their Sullivan Upper counterparts by 18-14. This

game was played at Campbell College and both teams would like to thank the staff at

Campbell College for the use of their excellent facilities.

 

Meanwhile, at Osborne Park the Campbell College Medallion team played the Wallace

High School Medallion team in another thrilling encounter. Wallace High School had to

work hard for their 11-9 victory with their points coming from two Conor Rankin

penalties and an unconverted try from James Hayes.

Both teams would like to thank the staff at Royal Belfast Academical Institution for

use of their excellent facilities at Osborne Park.

These results ensure that Wallace High School will play Royal Belfast Academical

Institution in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Shield. This game

will be played at the Kingspan Stadium on Monday 9th March.

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate final, played at Antrim Grammar

School, Coleraine Academical Institution defeated Grosvenor Grammar School by 7-3.

This closely contested game was a great advertisement for the game played at

Medallion level in our schools. Both teams displayed great intent with the ball in hand

and, at times, outstanding defensive skills. Ulster Branch referee, John Adams,

contributed greatly to the exciting spectacle with his desire to encourage the players

from both teams to use the advantage laws positively.

The first half was played with great skill and intensity but the defensive skills of both

team shone through and the score at half time was 0-0. The second half saw the

Grosvenor Grammar School team take a 3-0 lead when Jos McConkey was successful

with a monster penalty kick.

The Coleraine AI team responded immediately and scored a try when Connor Potts

outpaced the Grosvenor Grammar School defence a few minutes later and touched

down for the score. Matthew Mooney added the extras. The Grosvenor GS team went

on the offensive for the remainder of the game but, despite coming close on a number

of occasions, could find no way through a resolute Coleraine AI defence., The final

whistle sounded and it was the Coleraine Academical Institution team that celebrated

their hard earned 7-3 win in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion

Bowl. After the game the players received their medals and the Danske Bank Ulster

Schools’ Medallion Bowl was presented to the Coleraine AI team by Barney McGonigle,

representing Ulster Schools.

 

For the Grosvenor Grammar School team players such as Jake Laverty, Jonny Little and

Ben Davies stood out in the forwards while Dan Whitcroft, Jos McConkey, Nathan Chan

and Rory Elder impressed in the backs.

Callum Beggs led his Coleraine AI team with aplomb before having to leave the field of

play with a leg injury. In his absence the skills and work rate of his backrow colleague,

Matthew Mooney really shone through. Coleraine AI full back, Marc McClelland, was

another player who got through a lot of work, in both attack and defence, throughout

the game.

Both teams would like to thank Michael Ferguson, as well as the Principal and staff at

Antrim Grammar School, for hosting the game.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Trophy final, played at Royal School,

Dungannon, Omagh Academy defeated a gallant Strabane Grammar School team by 22-

0. The Omagh Academy Medallion scrum half, Taine Lagan, scored all 22 points for his

team. Taine would be the first to recognise the contribution made by Omagh Academy

players such as Jake McKay, Glenn McKinley, Matthew Bell, Harry McFarland, Morgan

McKenna and Cameron Clarke towards the winning of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’

Medallion Trophy. Bobby Stewart, Senior Vice-President of the Ulster Branch, IRFU,

and David Marshall, representative of the Danske Bank sponsors presented the Danske

Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Trophy and medals to all the players at a post-match

presentation ceremony. Both teams would like to thank the Royal School, Dungannon

staff for their hard work in hosting this final.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate semi-finals Ballymena Academy

travelled to play the Royal School, Armagh team. In a high scoring game the Ballymena

Academy team emerged as 31-14 winners. Meanwhile the second Danske Bank Ulster

Schools’ Medallion Plate semi-final saw the Friends’ School, Lisburn team dominate

possession as well as territory for large parts of the first half. However, they failed to

turn all the pressure into points and there was no score at the end of the first half.

The Down High School team, playing with the wind in the second half, scored two tries,

one of which was converted, to emerge from the game as 12-0 winners.

 

The Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Plate final is scheduled to be played at the

Belfast Royal Academy playing fields at Roughfort on Wednesday 11th March at 2-30pm.

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup Royal Belfast Academical Institution

travelled to play Sullivan Upper. The Belfast Inst team controlled the game and came

away with a 45-8 victory.

 

Meanwhile, the Royal Belfast Academical Institution 5thxv travelled to play the

Methodist College 3rdxv in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup. The Methodist

College team had too much experience for the Belfast Inst team and won the game by

27-8.

 

In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate competition, the Royal School,

Dungannon team defeated Bangor Grammar School by 32-5 and Wellington College lost

against Carrickfergus Grammar School by 13-12.

There are two Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup semi-finals, as well as the Danske Bank

Ulster Bowl final, due to be played during the forthcoming week.

Coleraine Academical Institution will play Royal Belfast Academical Institution in the

Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup semi-final at the Kingspan Stadium on Tuesday 3rd

March. This match will kick off at 2-30pm.

Dalriada School will face Rainey Endowed School in the final of the Danske Bank Ulster

Schools’ Bowl at Eaton Park, home of Ballymena RFC, on Wednesday 4th March. This

match will kick off at 2-30pm.

 

In the second of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup semi-finals, Methodist College,

Belfast will play Wallace High School at the Kingspan Stadium on Thursday 5th March.

This match will kick off at 3-00pm.