CBS Roscommon 35 St Joseph’s College(The Bish) Galway 19
CBS Roscommon are the Connacht Junior Premier League champions for the first time after a thrilling final played in Tuam last Thursday afternoon. Played in almost perfect conditions this game and was an excellent advertisment for the game of rugby between the two inform sides in Connacht at this level.
CBS began the game very well and had the much better of the early territory and up front Rian Biesty, Melvin Conteh and James Brandon were carrying a huge amount of ball however it wasn’t until the 17th minute that CBS registered their first score through the boot of Shane Purcell the CBS out-half to open the scoring. CBS continued to dominate and were unlucky when a sweeping move after 20 minutes that saw Niall Cunniffe stopped just short of the line, however from the resulting line out CBS regained possession and scrum-half Eoghan Coyle dived over from close in to increase the CBS lead to 8-0 after 22 minutes. The Roscommon students excellent defence insured that The Bish had not made any incursions into the CBS half in the first 22 minutes however in the last 8 minutes of the half they got control of the ball and started to cause the CBS trouble. with the last move of the half CBS were penalised for going offside at the ruck 5 metres out and a quickly taken penalty and an excellent cross field kick allowed The Bish centre Marcus Burke to touch down in the corner leaving the half time score 8-5.
With the 2nd half underway the next score was always going to be vital and CBS got it almost immediately from the restart, Daire Byrne and John Martin were putting huge pressure on the opposing out half Robert Hennessy and when the ball went to ground, inside centre Niall Cunniffe hacked on and showed great composure picking up to touch down which Shane Purcell converted stretching the CBS lead to 15-5.
The Bish needed to gain some territory to get back into this game and their best period came at this point of the game. They were now putting pressure on the CBS set piece and The Galway School’s Captain Hennessy was orchestrating things very well from the number 10 berth. A CBS scrum was turned over and Bish full-back Ewan Heapes found a gap in the CBS defence to score, Heapes converted his own try to reduce the deficit to only 3 points after 10 minutes of the second half 15-12.
From the kick off CBS regained Territory and again were putting pressure on the Bish backline who were finding hard to get out of their own half, when they did kick to the CBS, Cian Gately, Ben McGahon and Tim Lambe were dealing with it very well and running back at their opponents. After 15 minutes Ian Conlon and Melvin Conteh did well taking the ball into contact and near The Bish line and when the ball was recycled James Brandon dived over in the corner for an excellent score which was followed by a conversion from the sideline by Shane Purcell stretching the CBS lead to 22-12
The Roscommon School continued to attack and Shane Purcell slotted a penalty over after 19 minutes stretching the CBS lead out to 25-12. 2 minutes later they stretched the lead even further when ball was carried by Rian Biesty, James Brandon and Gavin Carberry into The Bish 22″ and when Eoghan Coyle passed to Shane Purcell, his dummy was bought by the defender which left Niall Cunniffe free outside to touch down again in the corner giving CBS a very healthy 30-12 advantage.
The Bish, to their credit never gave up and with 3 minutes left they got just reward for their endeavour with an excellent try in the corner scored by Ben Lavelle converted again by Ewan Heapes reducing the deficit to 30-19. CBS were not to be caught on the day however and they had the last word when another good move through the fluent CBS backs allowed Niall Cunniffe to grab his third try and the teams 5th try leaving the final score CBS Roscommon 35 St Joseph’s College 19.
CBS Squad : Melvin Conteh, Anthony Stewart, Eoin Leonard, Gavin Carberry, Ian Conlon, James Brandon, Eoghan Coyle, Shane Purcell, Jason Hoare, Niall Cunniffe, Cian Gately, Rian Biesty, Killian Higgins, Daire Byrne, Dylan Horan, Cian Dolan, John Martin, Tim Lambe, Rory Cunningham, Ben McGahan, Sean Hanly, Kyle Walsh, Patrick Fannon, Tomas Hanley, Conor Rohan, Baryl Kahn.v