A round-up of the latest schools’ rugby action, by Ulster Schools’ PRO, Barney McGonigle…
On Tuesday 7th January Antrim Grammar School played Banbridge Academy in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Trophy competition. The Banbridge Academy team had built up a 31-5 lead by the interval before going on to record a 45-5 victory.
There was one Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Group Play Off game played on Wednesday 8th January when Wellington College, Belfast played Antrim Grammar School in a game the Wellington College team won by 39-0. It was the strength of the Wellington College pack that laid the foundations for their victory. The Antrim Grammar School team displayed great commitment throughout the game but there was little they could do to stop the Wellington College team from running in seven tries.
The home team scored three first half tries through Dylan O’Brien, Aaron McNeill and Justin Bingham, two of which were converted by Tom Stanfield, to take a 19-0 lead into the break.
The second half saw the Wellington College, Belfast team run in four more tries through Finn Watts, Chris Beattie and “Man of the Match”, Dylan O’Neill, who completed his hat trick. All of the four second half tries went unconverted but the Wellington College, Belfast team had ensured their progress into the last sixteen of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl competition with their 39-0 victory.
In the 3rd Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2nd XV Cup Methodist College, Belfast 2nd XV played Down High School 2nd XV. The Methodist College, Belfast team won the game by 45-0.
Wallace High School 2nd XV played the Royal Belfast Academical Institution 2nd XV in the 3rd Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2nd XV Cup. Following a closely contested and hard-fought game it was the Royal Belfast Academical Institution which emerged as 21-12 winners.
On the same afternoon Banbridge Academy played Portadown College in the 1st Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2nd XV Trophy competition. The Portadown College team won the game by 17-10.
Dalriada School 2nd XV played Limavady Grammar School 2nd XV in the 1st Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy and it was the Dalriada School team that won the game by 10-0. Jonny McLaughlin and Lewis Hegarty each scored an unconverted try for the Dalriada School 2nd XV team.
In the 2nd Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rd XV Cup Methodist College, Belfast 5th XV played Down High School 3rd XV and it was the Methodist College, Belfast team that won the game by 29-5.
On Saturday 11th January there were games played in various Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ competitions as well as a number of 1st XV friendly games.
Our Lady and St Patrick’s College Knock played Carrickfergus Grammar School in the second and last of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Group Play Off games. With the Wellington College, Belfast team having already qualified to play in the Last Sixteen of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl competition they will now be joined by Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock who defeated Carrickfergus Grammar School by 31-0.
The Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock team, for whom full back, Finn Rodgers was outstanding, scored their points through tries from Jamie McConville, who touched down for a brace, Cian Fitzsimmons and Thomas McDevitt. Thomas added all four conversions as well as kicking a penalty.
For the committed Carrickfergus Grammar School team players such as Matty Baxter, Josh Dimbleby, Adam McIlroy and Jack McConnell impressed with their performances.
Regent House School played Omagh Academy in the 3rd Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Medallion Shield in a game the Regent House School team won by 11-10.
At 1st XV level Ballymena Academy played the Royal School, Armagh team and, following their recent defeat by Wallace High School, the Ballymena Academy team got back to winning ways with a 23-14 victory. The Ballymena Academy team had taken a 17-0 lead into the break through tries from Paul Gocher and Adam Lamont alongside two conversions and a penalty from Ross McKay.
The Royal School, Armagh team scored two early second half tries through Ryan Finlay and Ethan McAtarsney, to which Ethan added both conversions, thereby reducing the Royal School, Armagh deficit to 17-14. However, two late Ross McKay penalties, into the teeth of a gale, secured the 2314 victory for the Ballymena Academy team.
Banbridge Academy played Down High School in a well contested game the Down High School team won by 19-5. Jake Houston, who along with Ben Bradshaw starred for the Banbridge Academy team, scored an unconverted try for the Banbridge Academy team.
The Down High School points came through tries from Joe Charles, Craig Agunda and Rory Wilson. Two Luka Graham conversions secured the 19-5 win for the Down High School team.
Belfast High School played Grosvenor Grammar School in a very closely contested game the Grosvenor Grammar School team won by 12-9. The Belfast High School points came through three penalties from Aaron Douglas.
The Grosvenor Grammar School points came through two tries from Rhys Worthington and Shane Laverty, and a conversion by Adam Moore.
Campbell College, Belfast hosted the Clongowes Wood College team from Clane in Co Kildare and it was the Clongowes team that returned to Co Kildare with a well-earned 31-5 victory.
Paddy McAllister scored a consolation unconverted try for the Campbell College, Belfast team.
Enniskillen Royal Grammar School hosted Bangor Grammar School in a game the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team won by 21-7. Callum Smyton impressed with his two try performance for the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team and the team scored a third try through David Stinson. George Foster displayed great accuracy with his trusty boot by converting all three tries.
Conor Lusty scored a consolation unconverted try for the Bangor Grammar School team.
Friends’ School, Lisburn played the Royal School, Dungannon team and got back to winning ways with a 38-24 victory. Ethan Terris and Fergus McEwan scored tries in the first half for the Friends’ School, Lisburn team to which Reece Malone added one conversion.
The Friends’ School tries in the second half came through Fergus McEwen, Reece Malone, Kyle Gormley and team captain, Jack Harte. Reece Malone capped a fine personal performance when he added three more successful conversions.
The Royal School, Dungannon points came through tries from Logan McIlravie and Jonny McCammond, both of whom touched down twice. Jack Girvan was successful with two conversions.
Limavady Grammar School played Lurgan College in a closely contested game the Limavady Grammar School team won by 12-7.
The Lurgan College points came through a try from Ryan Allen which was converted by Justin Burns.
Methodist College, Belfast entertained Blackrock College, Dublin and won the game by 22-19.
The Methodist College, Belfast team scored three unconverted tries through Matthew Humphreys, Adam Reid, the Methody captain, and Callum Davidson. The team was also awarded a penalty try.
In response the Blackrock College, Dublin team scored three tries, two of which were converted.
Portadown College hosted Foyle and Londonderry College in a game the Portadown College team won by 46-7. Rhys Heasty and Ethan Williamson each scored two tries for the Portadown College team with Joe Orr, Cody Black, Charlie Logan and Jay Lismore each scoring one try. Adam Speers added three conversions.
The Foyle College points came through a converted try from Callum Gillen.
Rainey Endowed School played Ballyclare High School in a game the Ballyclare High School team won by 29-0. Scott Martin scored two tries for the Ballyclare High School team with Matthew Orr, Owen Warren and the very impressive Jack Gamble each scoring one try. Mark Jackson added the extras to two of the tries to secure the 29-0 win for the Ballyclare High School team.
Sullivan Upper School played a Coleraine Grammar School team that had not played a lot of rugby in recent weeks and the game finished with the Sullivan Upper School team recording a 24-7 victory.
The Sullivan Upper School team scored four tries with Harry Sheridan touching down twice and Rory Carson and Matthew Martin each touching down once. Adam Whiteside was successful with two of his conversion kicks.
The Coleraine Grammar School try was scored by Rory Telfer and converted by Harry Caskey.
Following the final play-off games in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Group being completed the draw took place for the 1st Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl competition. The draw was completed by Gary Leslie, President of the Ulster Branch, IRFU.
The results of the draw are as follows:
Rainey Endowed School v Omagh Academy
Portadown College v Lurgan College
Wellington College, Belfast v Dalriada School
Royal School, Dungannon v Dromore High School
Regent House School v Banbridge Academy
Strabane Academy v Belfast High School
Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock v Foyle and Londonderry College
Limavady Grammar School v Larne Grammar School
These Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl 1st Round games MUST be played on/before Saturday 25th January