A round-up of the latest schools’ rugby action, by Ulster Schools’ PRO, Barney McGonigle…
The last of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate 1/4 Final games was played on Monday 3rd February when Wallace High School 2ndxv hosted Foyle and Londonderry College 2ndxv. Wallace High School 2ndxv won the game by 29-5.
On Wednesday 5th February, Omagh Academy played Strabane Academy in the 1/4 Final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy competition. The Omagh Academy team dominated proceedings for long periods of time and emerged as 57-7 winners. With players such as Joel Smyth, Alex Clements, Scott Wilson and Harry Stephenson leading the way the Omagh Academy team scored nine tries in the course of the game. Oisin McBride scored a hat trick; Sam McLaren scored a brace with Joshua Kyle, Joel Smyth, Matthew Keys and Harry Stephenson each scoring one. Jake Reid was successful with four conversions and Joshua Kyle with two.
The Strabane Academy team displayed great commitment throughout the game and got some reward for their endeavours when John Cummings scored a try which was converted by Tom Harpur.
On the same afternoon, Ballymena Academy 3rdxv played Royal Belfast Academical Institution 3rdxv in the 1/4 Final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup. Following a closely contested game the Ballymena Academy team emerged as 15-14 winners.
Meanwhile at Pirrie Park a Methodist College, Belfast “Derby” game took place when the Methodist College 3rdxv defeated the Methodist College 5thxv by 38-14 in their Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup ¼ Final game.
Campbell College, Belfast 3rdxv hosted Royal School, Armagh 3rdxv in the 1/4 Final of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Cup and won the game by 28-5.
In the 1/4 Final of the Danske Bank 3rd Plate Belfast Royal Academy 3rdxv played Ballyclare High School 3rdxv in a game the Ballyclare High School team won by 43-5.
In the Preliminary Round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate competition Royal Belfast Academical Institution 5thxv defeated Sullivan Upper 3rdxv by 14-12.
On Thursday 6th Enniskillen Royal Grammar School 3rdxv played Royal School, Armagh 4thxv in the preliminary round of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 3rdxv Plate competition. The Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team won the game by 38-0.
On Saturday 8th February there were eight games played in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup, four games played in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl 1/4 Finals and three games played in the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy 1/4 Finals.
In the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup Ballyclare High School hosted Friends’ School, Lisburn in an exciting game that finished as a 17-17 draw. Both team missed early penalty opportunities but the Ballyclare High School team eventually took a 7-0 lead when Jordan Young crossed touched down for a try which was converted by Mark Jackson. The Friends’ School team responded positively to this set back and reduced the arrears to 7-5 when Fergus McEwen outwitted the opposition defence and scored an unconverted try in the corner. Friends’ School then took a 10-7 lead into the break when Stuart Patterson scored the second unconverted try of the game.
Shortly after the restart the Friends’ School team increased their lead to 17-7 when Fergus McEwen touched down for his second try of the game. Reece Malone added the extras and it was starting to look as if there was going to be a major shock. However, the Ballyclare High School team never gave up and two unconverted tries from their danger men, Mark Jackson and Adam Barron, secured the 17-17 draw.
The replay of this Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup game should be scheduled to be played at some stage in the coming midweek.
Bangor Grammar School played Wallace High School, one of the teams being seen as favourites to win the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup this season. Following their emphatic 33-6 victory few would disagree with the tag as favourites being put on the Wallace High School team.
The Bangor Grammar School points came through two Conor Lusty penalties.
The Wallace High School team scored five tries with their outstanding captain, Reuben Crothers, touching down for two, and Harry Maguire, Ben Carson and Nathan Doak each running in for one. Nathan Doak capped a fine personal performance when he was successful with four of his conversion kicks.
Cambridge House Grammar School hosted Methodist College, Belfast and, despite a very committed performance from the Cambridge House team, it was the Methodist College, Belfast team that came through as 32-0 winners.
Adam Reid, Zach Porter and Andrew McMurray each scored a first half try for the Methody team and one Callum Davidson conversion saw them into a 17-0 lead at the interval.
Three unconverted second half tries from Harry McCartney. Luke Simms and Andrew McMurray secured the 32-0 victory for the Methodist College, Belfast team.
Coleraine Grammar School played Sullivan Upper School and, following a well contested game, the Sullivan Upper team won by 27-19.
The Coleraine Grammar School points came through two tries from Rory Telfer, one try from Ryan O’Kane and two conversions from Harry Caskey.
The Sullivan Upper School points came through two tries from Rory Carson, one try each from George Saunderson and Zac Moraghan to which Adam Whiteside added two conversions as well as one penalty.
Down High School played Ballymena Academy in a high scoring game the Ballymena Academy team won by 51-12.
The Down High School team enjoyed a considerable amount of success in the first half and scored two tries through Jonathan Graham and Craig Gunda to which Luka Walsh added one conversion. Simon McWhirter, Alistair McKee and Matthew Corr touched down for first half tries for the Ballymena Academy team and two Ross McKay conversions saw the Ballymena Academy team into a 19-12 lead at the interval.
The Ballymena Academy team played with a stiff wind in the backs in the second half and they took full advantage of the conditions. Ross McKay kicked two penalties to extend their lead to 25-12. Then the strength and power of the young Ballymena Academy team started to shine through. Tries from Adam Lamont, Charles Harpur, Ross McKay and James Wright, with three Ross McKay conversions, secured the 51-12 win for the Ballymena Academy team.
Grosvenor Grammar School entertained Enniskillen Royal Grammar School and, despite the best intentions of the young Grosvenor Grammar School team, it was the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team that finished as 52-0 winners.
David Stinson, Stephen Balfour and Robbie Mills each scored a brace of tries with Callum Smyton and Stuart Brown each touching down for one try. Five Eddie Keyes conversions, and one from George Foster, secured the 52-0 victory for the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School team.
Royal Belfast Academical Institution played Belfast Royal Academy and recorded an impressive 47-12 victory.
The Belfast Inst team scored seven tries through Oscar Lowe, Ronan Boyle, John Dickson, Rory Adair, Jude Postlethwaite, Sam Collins and Jack Leathem. Ronan Boyle added the extras to six of the tries.
The Belfast Royal Academy points came through tries from Rob Sturgess and Ollie Parkes to which Ollie Parkes added one conversion.
The “Match of the Day” was played at the College Hill Venue in Armagh where the Royal School, Armagh team hosted Campbell College, Belfast. With two of the leading schools in the province in action a large crowd had gathered to watch the game which the Royal School, Armagh team won by 34-6.
Two Campbell College, Belfast penalties from Jack Bonnar early in the game gave the Campbell College team some reward for their endeavours. However, once the Royal School, Armagh team got their game plan flowing there seemed little the Campbell College team could do to contain the hosts.
Jude Roberts, Ross Taylor, Niall Carville, Josh Cunningham and Charlie Worth scored the tries for the Royal School, Armagh team. Romain Morrow added three conversions, as well as one penalty, to secure the 34-6 win for the Royal School, Armagh team.
In the 1/4 Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl Banbridge Academy played the Rainey Endowed School and won the game by 19-12.
The Banbridge Academy points came through tries from Marcus McNeill, Jake Houston and Ben Bradshaw. Jonny Martin was successful with two conversions. Adam Hanna, Marcus McNeill and Marc Murphy all impressed with their performance for the Banbridge Academy team.
The Rainey Endowed School points came through tries from Josh Johnston and Sebastian Hastings to which Ross Speers added one conversion.
Belfast High School played Dalriada School and, following a high scoring and closely contested game, emerged as 25-14 winners.
The Belfast High School team scored two tries through Jacob Ogle and Eddie Gorrod with Aaron Douglas adding five successful penalty kicks.
The Dalriada School team scored four tries with James McCormick touching down for two and Paddy Steele and Sam Tweedie each touching down for one. Aaron Gervais was successful with two of his conversion kicks.
Limavady Grammar School played their near neighbours and close rivals from Foyle and Londonderry College and, despite the very difficult playing conditions, recorded an impressive 30-0 victory.
The Limavady Grammar School team scored six unconverted tries with Zavier McCann, Lewis Baldrick, Joshua Howe, Austin Hargin, Matthew Brown and Ben McMillan being the scorers.
Portadown College hosted Dromore High School in an extraordinary game which saw the Portadown College team lead by 10-0 going into the final few minutes only to see the Dromore High School team score with the last play of the game and win by 12-10.
The Portadown College team scored two unconverted tries through their elusive winger, Peter Davison.
The Dromore High School scorers were Adam Mulligan and Adam Whitten with Luke Allison showing nerves of steel to kick the winning conversion.
In the 1/4 Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy
Larne Grammar School played Lurgan College in another very closely contested game which the Larne Grammar School team won by 7-5.
The Lurgan College team took an early 5-0 lead when Ryan Allen sniped over the Larne line for an unconverted try.
The Lurgan College team maintained this lead going into the closing stages of the game until the Larne centre, Jack Withers, took the opportunity to score a try. The Euan Glenn conversion secured the 7-5 victory for the Larne Grammar School team.
Regent House School entertained the Royal School, Dungannon team in a game the Royal School, Dungannon team won by 52-7.
Joe Hopes scored the Regent House School try which was converted by Mattie Gibson.
The Royal School, Dungannon team, for whom Thomas Burns put in a “Man of the Match” performance, scored eight tries in the course of the game. Jonny McCammond scored a hat trick; Jack Girvan touched down for a brace with Michael Tate, James Girvan and Adam Junk each scoring one. Jack Girvan was successful with six of his conversion kicks.
Wellington College, Belfast renewed their season long rivalry with Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock and this time it was the Our Lady and St Patrick’s College that won the game by 5-3.
The Wellington College, Belfast team had taken a 3-0 lead midway through the first half when Tom Stanfield converted a penalty opportunity with a successful kick.
With play going into the last minute of the game that was still the score. The Wellington College team conceded a penalty and it looked as if the Our Lady and St Patrick’s College team was going for the penalty kick option in an effort to draw the scores level. However, Finn Rogers had another idea. He took a quick tap and go penalty and forced his way over the Wellington College line to touch down for an unconverted try which secured the 5-3 victory for the Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock team.
When the results of all the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup, Bowl and Trophy games were known the draws for the 1/4 Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup, 1/4 Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Subsidiary Shield, and 1/2 Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl and Trophy games took place.
The draws were organised by Richard Clingan, Chairman of the Ulster Schools’ Rugby Committee and completed by Mrs Elizabeth Huddleson, Principal of Bangor Grammar School, and Chris Webster, Head of Rugby Development, with Ulster Rugby.
The results of the draws are as follows:-
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup 1/4 Finals
1/Ballymena Academy v Royal School, Armagh
2/Methodist College, Belfast v Sullivan Upper School
3/Royal Belfast Academical Institution v Ballyclare High School/Friends’ School, Lisburn
4/Wallace High School v Enniskillen Royal Grammar School
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Subsidiary Shield 1/4 Finals
1/Down High School v Belfast Royal Academy
2/Coleraine Grammar School v Grosvenor Grammar School
3/Ballyclare High School/Friends’ School, Lisburn v Bangor Grammar School
4/Cambridge House Grammar School v Campbell College, Belfast
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Bowl 1/2 Finals
1/Limavady Grammar School v Dromore High School
2/Belfast High School v Banbridge Academy
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Trophy Semi-Finals
1/Royal School, Dungannon v Omagh Academy
2/Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock v Larne Grammar School
ALL these Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup, Subsidiary Shield, Bowl and Trophy games MUST be played on/before SATURDAY 22nd February 2020
The draws for the Semi-Finals of the Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup, Plate and Trophy competitions took place on Saturday 3rd February 2020.
The results of the draws are as follows:-
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup Semi-Finals
1/Methodist College, Belfast v Campbell College, Belfast
2/Royal School, Armagh v Royal Belfast Academical Institution
These Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Cup Semi-Finals MUST be played on/before Saturday 15th February 2020
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2nd xv Plate Semi-Finals
1/Dromore High School v Wallace High School
2/Bangor Grammar School v Omagh Academy
These Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Plate Semi-Finals MUST be played on/before Saturday 15th February 2020
Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Trophy Semi-Finals
1/Regent House School v Grosvenor Grammar School
2/Friends’ School, Lisburn v Belfast Royal Academy
These Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ 2ndxv Trophy Semi-Finals MUST be played on/before Saturday 15th February 2020