Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Round Up Saturday 9th September 2017
Monday, 11 September 2017
There were two games played on Friday 8th September in the lead up to a full list of games played on Saturday 9th September.
The East Antrim “Derby” game featuring Larne Grammar School and Carrickfergus Grammar School was played on Friday 8th with the Larne GS team recording a 29-12 victory. The game was played out over 3×20 minute sessions with both coaches using the occasion to make use of extended squads of players. The young players on view from the Carrickfergus Grammar School team thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The Carrickfergus points came through tries from David Doherty and Josh Clements with Josh taking advantage of a clever off-load pass from his outhalf, Daniel Curley. Daniel added the conversion to one of the tries. The Larne Grammar School points came through tries from Lee McKee, who ran in two classic tries, Jack Withers, who ran a great line of a clever pass from his outhalf, Euan Glenn, and Robbie Simpson. Euan Glenn was successful with three conversions as well as a penalty kick.
Meanwhile, on the same afternoon Friends’ School, Lisburn hosted the Royal School, Dungannon team at the Magheralave Road venue. In an entertaining game it was the Friends’ School team that snatched victory from the jaws of defeat when a conversion, the last kick of the game, was sufficient to secure a 22-21 win for the Lisburn team. The RS Dungannon team had controlled the game, in terms of both territory and possession, for long periods of the first half. They had taken complete control of the game and raced into a 21-0 lead with three tries from David Maxwell, Calvin Nelson and Jonny McCammond. All three of the tries were converted by Luke McMullan. Bradley Mulholland reduced the arrears just before the interval when he ran in for a try, which George Pringle converted, to leave the Royal School, Dungannon team with a 21-7 lead at the interval.
The Friends’ School team started the second half strongly and an unconverted try from Jack Harte which further reduced the Friends’ School deficit to 21-12. Both teams were playing the game at a high tempo with all the players determined to play with the ball in hand. A series of clever off-loads from the Friends’ School team pressurised the RS Dungannon team into conceding a penalty. George Pringle stepped up and somewhat fortuitously converted the kick to further reduce the Friends’ School deficit to 21-15. With the final play of the game Bradley Mulholland paved the way for George Pringle to run in for a try. George converted the try with the last kick of the game to leave the Friends’ School team as 22-21 winners at the no-side whistle.
The game showed that both teams have a number of very talented players within their squads. For the RS Dungannon team Jono Shrestha, Josh Fegan, Jonny McCammond and Luke McMullan impressed with their performances while Alex Hall, Henry Tolerton, Ross Stewart and the two Jack Hartes all impressed with their performances for the Friends’ School team.
With the age grade Inter Provincial games in full swing quite a few schoolboy players were missing when their school teams played on Saturday 9th September
Dromore High School, having had a run out in the IH Graham Trophy Tournament last weekend, continued their preparation for the season with another series of round robin games fixture against Portadown College and Banbridge Academy. Portadown College defeated Dromore High School by 19-7 with tries from Christopher Thornberry, Peter McAdam and Dylan Nelson. Adam Speers added two conversions.
Dromore High School then drew 0-0 with the Banbridge Academy team. In the final game of the morning the Banbridge Academy team defeated the Portadown College team by 7-5. Outhalf, Tom Flanagan, scored all the Banbridge points in that game while Year 12 Flanker, scored the Portadown College try. All teams found the games enjoyable despite the difficult weather conditions that prevailed with all members of the three extended squads getting game time.
Antrim Grammar School continued their recent run of good form with a 26-0 victory against Wellington College, Belfast. Having defeated a Campbell College 3rdxv by 14-0 in a midweek fixture, with tries from Joe Griffith and Dylan Woods, both of which were converted by Ben McDonagh, these players went on to lead the charge against the Wellington College team. Dylan Woods and Joe Griffith were joined by Callum McComb and Adam Carville in scoring tries against the Wellington College team with Ben McDonagh adding three conversions.
The Ballyclare High School team has started the season in a positive manner and this continued with a 12-8 victory against Belfast Royal Academy. Callum Davidson struck a first half penalty to give the Belfast Royal Academy team a 3-0 lead at the interval.
Jack Gamble and Matthew McCullough then scored one try each for the Ballyclare team and, with Adam Clarke adding one conversion, the Ballyclare High School team took a 12-3 lead in the course of the second half. Callum Davidson then ran in for an unconverted try to reduce the BRA deficit to 12-8 going into the final quarter. Try as they might, the Belfast Royal Academy team could find no way past a resolute Ballyclare High School defence which ensured the Ballyclare HS team finished the game as 12-8 winners.
Belfast High School hosted Limavady Grammar School in a game the Limavady Grammar School team won by 17-12. Captain, Ethan McConkey and Ryan Gibson scored tries for the Belfast High School team with Brandon McMinn adding one conversion.
The Limavady Grammar School points came through tries from Ben Riley, James Howe and Jamie Young. Jamie was successful with one conversion.
Dalriada School recorded a confidence boosting 29-0 victory against Grosvenor Grammar School. Luke Pollock scored two tries for the Dalriada team with Paddy Carson, James McCormick and Matthew Kennedy touching down for one try each. James was also successful with two of his conversion kicks.
The Omagh Academy team had two key forwards missing due to an Ulster Schools’ training session while the Down High School team was missing one when the teams met in a game the Down High School team won by 10-0. Greg Hutley kicked a penalty opportunity to give the Down High School team a 3-0 lead early in the game. Josh Hanlon then scored a try, which Greg Hutley converted, to see the Down High School into a 10-0 lead at the interval.
Difficult weather conditions played havoc with the rhythm of the game in the second half with both teams unable to add anything to the score board in the course of the second period of play.
Foyle and Londonderry College hosted a rampant Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team in a game the Enniskillen team won by 40-3. The game took place in difficult overhead and underfoot conditions but the Enniskillen RGS seemed unfazed. Reece Barrett scored an early unconverted try to give the Enniskillen RGS a 5-0 lead. Keelan Coyle converted a penalty opportunity for the Foyle College team to leave the Enniskillen RGS team with a 5-3 lead at the break.
The visitors lifted the pace of the game in the second half and their enterprising approach was rewarded with tries from Ewan Haire, two from team captain, Jack Rutledge, James Hooker and another from Reece Barrett. Reece Smyton converted all five second half tries to secure the 40-3 win for the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team.
Rainey Endowed School and Regent House were both missing key players who were on Ulster duty when the teams met in a game the Rainey ES team won by 12-8. Jack Smith kicked a penalty to give the Regent House team a 3-0 lead at the end of the first half.
In the second half Jack Bresland took advantage of a great break from Harry Evans to touch down for a try. Harry added the conversion to see the Rainey team into a 7-3 lead. Back came the Regent team with Jack Smith touching down for an unconverted to see the Newtownards boys take an 8-7 lead going into final stages of the game. The Rainey Endowed School team displayed great endeavour in the final few minutes and got rewarded when Aidan McDonald touched down for a try which ensured the Rainey ES emerged as 12-8 winners at the end of the game.
Armagh Royal school continued with their impressive start to the season when they defeated Bangor Grammar School by 34-7. Nicolas Jennings ran in a hat=trick of tries with Zac Thompson touching down for two tries and Archie McAlpine touching down for one. Zac was successful with two conversions.
For Bangor Grammar School Daniel Young scored a try as well as a conversion.
Campbell College, Belfast entertained the St Gerard’s College team that was making it’s second visit to the province in the course of a week. Having lost against Wallace High School last week they team from Bray succumbed this time to the Campbell College team by 17-12. The Campbell College points came through tries from Jamie Brennan and Rex Tinsley with Dara Gaskin converting both. Conor Rankin sealed the win for the hosts with a long range second half penalty kick.
The Ballymena Academy team was missing quite a number of players when they hosted Wallace High School in a game the Wallace team won by 25-0. The Wallace team scored five unconverted tries through Jamie Peters, who touched down twice, Peter McRoberts, Jack Bailie and Dylan Sedge.
Lurgan College travelled to play a Royal Belfast Academical Institution “Select” team and came away with a 12-0 win. Year 12 hooker, Luke Forsythe scored both tries with Josh Best adding one conversion.
Meanwhile, on the main pitch at Osborne Park the Royal Belfast Academical Institution 1stxv hosted Belvedere College from Dublin a game the Belvo team won by 23-5.
Meanwhile in Dublin quite a few schoolboy players featured in the Ulster U19 squad that played against Leinster U19’s at Donnybrook. It proved to be yet another disappointing day out for the Ulster U19 team with the Leinster team running out as 59-15 winners.
The early feeling out process produced a penalty for Leinster in the 3rd minute. They went through their phases and Ulster lost their patience at a ruck for centre David Ryan to kick the penalty.
The concession of two quick penalties was all the invitation Ulster needed to come forward.
They were relentless in their driving game, the ball finally moved right for wing Mark Thompson to dive in at the corner for 5-3 in the seventh minute.
Strong pressure from loose forwards Scott Penny and Dan O’Donovan resulted in a knock-on for an attacking scrum which was well defended by Ulster.
The visitors blew the chance to extend their lead when fine counter-rucking was undone by a player speaking out of turn to the referee.
The remarkable capacity of out-half David Hawkshaw to withstand a hit and keep going created a penalty when full-back Michael O’Neill didn’t release after the tackle for Ryan to edge Leinster back in front.
Second row Adam Melia’s failure to hold the restart was compounded by Ryan Baird instinctively playing the ball from in front, only for out-half Bruce Houston’s kick to slide right of the posts.
A cracking tackle from loose-head Niall McEniff was matched by the burst of Ulster captain Clayton Milligan.
The visitors were growing into the game, illustrated by the short passing of their forwards, like prop Paul McGookin.
They came calling with intent and forced a 5-metre lineout which flanker Matthew Crowther could not gather.
The Ulster centres David Lyttle and Stewart Moore were proving a real handful, the latter spinning a miracle ball for left wing Jonny Hunter to require Adam La Grue to be sharp in defence.
When Leinster did react, Penny could not quite break free of the clutches of fly-half Houston.
It took a stupendous piece of work on the floor by Liam Turner to garner a penalty, Hawkshaw finding touch inside the 22.
There was a fine take from Ryan Baird at the lineout, a controlled maul, significant drive from O’Donovan and sure hands across the line for Ruairi Shields to fly to the left corner.
Ryan’s conversion from the left touchline was a thing of beauty on the half hour.
The response was swift, Ulster moving well enough to force a penalty which Houston nailed for 13-8 right on half-time.
At the start of the second half it was all to play for and Baird’s thundering carry took Leinster out of trouble.
The intervention of Reuben Pim and soft hands of Melia put scrum-half Cormac Foley through a hole to step the last man, Ryan’s conversion making it 20-8 in the 38th minute.
The game was put beyond recall when Leinster mesmerised with their movement and passing from Foley, Ryan, Turner and La Grue for prop Niall McEniff to seal the deal.
Ryan’s conversion made it 27-8 in the 45th minute.
They had solved the puzzle by moving the ball wide instead of into the guts of the Ulster midfield, their next foray drawing another three for Ryan before the centre got on the end of another sweeping move for the fourth try for 35-8 in the 48th minute.
The impact of prop Michael Milne was immediate, combining with McEniff for ground gained and rifling through the middle for the fifth try converted by Ryan.
It wasn’t long before Ryan’s inside ball had Penny strolling over without a care in the world for another seven points.
Ulster did manage their second try from Stewart Moore’s interception only for replacement Declan Adamson to send wing Shields in for his second in the 63rd minute.
Finally, one lock Melia was there to pick up the pieces when the other Baird came up short of the line to complete the eight try haul.
Robert Russell (St Michael’s);
Adam La Grue (Terenure)
Liam Turner (Blackrock) / Brian O’Donnell (Gonzaga) 46 mins
David Ryan (St Michael’s)
Ruairi Shields (St Mary’s);
David Hawkshaw (Belvedere, Capt) / Conor Kelly (Cistercian, Roscrea) 52 mins
Cormac Foley (St Gerard’s) / Garrett Fitzgerald (Tullow RFC) 56 mins
Niall McEniff (St Mary’s) / Aziz Naser (St Fintan’s HS) 57 mins
Richard Bergin (St Mary’s) / Declan Adamson (St Fintan’s HS) 26 mins – temp & 54 mins
Conan Dunne (Kilkenny RFC) / Michael Milne (Cistercian, Roscrea) 41 mins
Adam Melia (Terenure)
Ryan Baird (St Michael’s)
Reuben Pim (Kilkenny) / Ronan Watters (St Mary’s) 41 mins
Scott Penny (St Michael’s)
Dan O’Donovan (St Michael’s) / Ruadhan Byron (Belvedere) 46 mins.
Michael O’Neill (Rainey RFC); Mark Thompson (Ballymena Academy), Stewart Moore (Ballymena Academy), David Lyttle (RBAI), Jonny Hunter (Wallace High); Bruce Houston (Ballymena Academy), Callum Harkin (Malone RFC); Jack Walters (Exiles), Clayton Milligan (Down High, Capt), Paul McGookin (Ballyclare RFC), JJ McKee (Antrim Grammar), Josh Young (Ballyclare High), Oisin Jordan (Ballymena Academy), Matthew Crowther (Campbell College), Jamie Macartney (Campbell College).
Replacements: Oisin Kiernan (Campbell College) for Young 30 mins; Evin Crummie (City of Armagh RFC) for O’Neill 41 mins; Niall Armstrong (RBAI) for Harkin 49 mins; Zach Kerr (Bangor GS) for Lyttle 50 mins; Jack McIntosh (Rainey RFC) for Walters 57 mins; Ben Heath (Dromore HS) for Jordan, Neil Saulters (RBAI) for Milligan both 61 mins; Ben Savage (Ballymena Academy ) for McGookin 66 mins.
Referee: Rob O’Sullivan, IRFU.