Creggs 2nds. 10, Oughterard RFC 40.
The final scoreline does little justice to Creggs in Sunday’s Ard Na Cregg Cup semi-final played in blustery conditions at The Green.
There is no doubt that Oughterard were the more accomplished outfit on the day but Creggs battled right to the end despite being seriously depleted at the end of 4 tough games in consecutive weeks.
The loss of several key players took its toll but each squad member contributed to another wholehearted display against a strong and well balanced Oughterard team.
With former Irish international Jack Clarke proving an inspirational link at outhalf between backs and forwards, Oughterard got off to a great start with 2 penalties by winger James Butler before Clarke cut through for a try in the 18th minute to give his team an 11 nil lead.
Creggs hit back with some powerful rugby with Damien Nolan scoring a fine try which Ger Heneghan converted.
However, Oughterard responded with a slick handling move which gave winger Dan Roche a clear run to the line. Just on the stroke of halftime Oughterard scored again from a lineout and this left Creggs facing an uphill battle.
A Heneghan penalty reduced the deficit to 13 points but a harsh sinbinning proved to be the final straw for Creggs as the visitors ran in 2 tries in quick succession before prop forward James Gibbons completed the scoring with a spectacular try. Oughterard now meet OLBC in the Cup final and look capable of asking serious questions of the League champions.
Creggs can reflect on a successful season which resulted in promotion to Division 1C but the Cup campaign proved to be a bridge too far.
Graham Curran gave a superb display in the Creggs backrow while Ruari O’Brollochain completed a fine season with another powerful display in midfield with Ger Heneghan, Dan Butt, Tommy Curley and Eoghan Cahill also impressing for Creggs.
Creggs Rugby: Barry Egan, Stephen Crehan, Michael Farrell, Ruairi O Brollochain, John Scroope, Ger Heneghan, David Hoare, Tommy Curley, Enda Tully, Peter Heavey, Kevin Rushe, Damien Nolan, Dan Butt, Eoghan Cahill, Enda Garvey, Graham Curran, Paul McNeill, Seamus Collins, Neville Walker, Matthew Butt, Andy Boyle, and Tom Coleman.
Management Team: Sean Brandon (Manager); Coaches: Mattie Corcoran, Bernard Kilcommins, & Vincent Collins.