Cork Con FC 1st XV 22 - 13 St Mary’s College
Venue: Templeville RoadCompetition: Ulster Bank League
Cork Constitution won a tough UBL encounter with St Mary’s College on Saturday. In blustery conditions, both sides made every effort to keep the ball moving, and used their three-quarters extensively. However, the conditions took pace off the play, and in the end, it was the tried and trusted methods that succeeded.
Constitution made a good start, and were rewarded with a penalty by Johnny Holland after 8 minutes. Their line out play was excellent throughout with Nagle, Donnellan and Lawler to the fore. And it was a line out maul that was driven to the line in the 12th minute that gave Constitution the opening try. When the maul was pulled down at the line, St Mary’s Rob Sweeney was sin-binned and a penalty try awarded. Holland kicked the simple conversion for a 10-0 lead.
Gavin Dunne struck a penalty for St. Mary’s on 16 minutes and Jonathan Holland replied with a penalty two minutes later. Rob Clune was sin-binned in the 24th minute for not releasing near the try line, but Dunne missed with the penalty attempt. He was successful with a similar effort just before half time, however, to leave the half time score at 13-6 to the visitors.
St Mary’s players went to the dressing rooms during the break, but it was Constitution who had the better of the third quarter. A Johnny Holland penalty in the 53rd minute extended their lead to 16-3, and with the benefit of a diagonal cross wind they were dominating play. However, an incisive break instigated by Mary’s wing Darragh Fanning took play to the Con 22 metre line, and when a penalty was awarded, scrum half Matt D’arcy took a quick penalty and eluded the defence for an opportunist try. Dunne added the points for 16-13.
In the final 10 minutes there were yellow cards against Keller of St Mary’s and Lawler for Constitution, as the referee struggled to manage the intensity of the breakdowns. However, Constitution forced the play to the St. Mary’s half, and Gerry Hurley secured the points with penalties in the 71st and 81st minutes.
The win boosts Constitution’s placing in the table to fourth, level with Young Munster on 25 points. However, Lansdowne are now nine points ahead after a 23-0 win over second-placed Garryowen, who are Con’s opponents next Saturday at Dooradoyle.
D.Lyons; C.Healy, R.Clune, S.Deasy, N.O’Driscoll; J.Holland, G.Hurley Capt.; B.Cagney, A.O’Driscoll, John Ryan; I.Nagle, P.Donnellan; G.Lawler, B.O’Hara, James Ryan.Con Scorers:
Pen try; J.Holland 3P1C; G.Hurley 2PSt Mary’s College Players:
C.Hogan; D.Hudson, M.O’Driscoll, R.Hidson, D.Fanning; G.Dunne, M.D’arcy; C.McMahon, D.Fawsitt, R.Sweeney; S.Bradshaw, J.Sexton; C.Ruddock, G.Austin, D.Keller.St Mary’s College Scorers:
M.D’arcy 1T; G.Dunne 2P1C.