Clontarf and Lansdowne claim contrasting victories in Ulster Bank League

Nervy finish for Lansdowne as Old Belvedere’s Glynn misses last-minute conversion

Lansdowne’s Tom Farrell tackles Aidan Wynne of Old Belvedere in the Ulster Bank League match last night. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Lansdowne’s Tom Farrell tackles Aidan Wynne of Old Belvedere in the Ulster Bank League match last night. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

 

Clontarf 44 St Mary’s College 15 A strong start and finish saw Clontarf secure only their second try-scoring bonus point of the Ulster Bank League season as they dismissed St Mary’s College 44-15 at Castle Avenue last night.

Outhalf David Joyce played a starring role for the defending Division 1A champions, who are back up to third in the table following this result. The Tullamore man scored a try, kicked four conversions (including two from the touchline) and two penalties for a 19-point haul – his tally for the current campaign now stands at 101 points.

Tries from backs Michael Brown and Anthony McGivney, who profited from an initial break by Leinster’s Colm O’Shea, had Clontarf leading 17-0 at half-time.

Second-from-bottom Mary’s cut the deficit back to just five points after Tom O’Reilly and Ciaran Ruddock – two members of a combative front five – crossed for successive tries in the third quarter.

However, the visitors could only add three more points from the boot of Gavin Dunne as Clontarf found an extra gear or two in the closing quarter. Prop Ivan Soroka’s close range try was followed by Joyce’s bonus point score which impressively saw him collect his own hack-on from halfway.

Joyce then swung over the conversion of centre Brown’s second try of the night, and the sixth and final touchdown saw good hands from David Hegarty and Karl Moran pave the way for lock Tom Byrne to go over.

Scorers: Clontarf: Tries: Michael Brown 2, Anthony McGivney, Ivan Soroka, David Joyce, Tom Byrne; Cons: David Joyce 4; Pens: David Joyce 2 St Mary’s College: Tries: Tom O’Reilly, Ciaran Ruddock; Con: Gavin Dunne; Pen: Gavin Dunne HT: Clontarf 17 St. Mary’s College 0

Lansdowne 21 Old Belvedere 20 Lansdowne survived a late scare to finish as 21-20 winners over Old Belvedere in a tense New Year encounter on the Aviva Stadium’s back pitch.

Mike Ruddock’s men were 21-15 ahead entering the final minutes and although Shane McDonald went over out wide for Belvedere’s third try, fellow winger Josh Glynn missed what would have been a match-winning conversion.

Lansdowne somehow held on to begin 2015 on a winning note, making it six league victories on the trot to move seven points clear at the top of the Division 1A table.

Despite being outscored by three tries to two, Lansdowne had a key contribution from experienced outhalf Scott Deasy who claimed an 11-point haul.

Belvedere benefited from the sin-binning of Lansdowne winger John Coleman on the hour mark. Barely a minute later, prop Adam Howard crashed over for Glynn to convert and reduce the arrears to six points.

Paul Cunningham’s charges kept pressing and got their reward in injury-time when McDonald nabbed a deserved try. However, the kick proved too difficult for Glynn. Scorers: Lansdowne: Tries: Joe O’Brien, Cian Kelleher; Con: Scott Deasy; Pens: Scott Deasy 3 Old Belvedere: Try: Michael Oyuga, Adam Howard, Shane McDonald; Con: Josh Glynn; Pen: Josh Glynn HT: Lansdowne 16 Old Belvedere 8

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