Creggs Rugby 7, Buccaneers RFC 5
Creggs Under-15’s had a very good victory over Buccaneers of Athlone in Division 1 of the Connacht Under-15 League on Sunday in Creggs.
Playing against a much more physical and bigger pack, this game was always going to be one where discipline and committed tackling were going to be so important. So it proved and the Creggs players were not found wanting on either count.
Buccaneers started the game well carrying through their large pack and they rarely spread the ball wide. And Creggs forwards were doing well to gain any type of possession.
There were good carries from Jack Keegan and especially John McDonnell early on who then moved the ball through the hands to Aodha Hession, Mark Purcell, and first centre Sam Sullivan who did very well in gaining yards up the centre of the pitch until he had to retire with a shoulder injury after 15 minutes.
Creggs had lost their big ball carrier but were very brave in defence with Jack Hanley, Tom Farrell and Lorcan Maher very prominent in stopping the visitors.
However, after 17 minutes Buccaneers took the lead when after a penalty 5 meters out their big forwards carried and a couple of phases later Jack Scouler broke through the Creggs defence who had eventually run out of numbers and they took the 5-0 lead to half time.
It would have been easy for Creggs to let their heads drop but in the second half Aaron Hannon and Ciaran Neil Smith were doing well in midfield and Karl Healy was cleaning up at number 15 and they limited the Buccaneers chances to a single effort where Scouler dived for the line but the referee deemed that Creggs had held the ball up and Creggs eventually cleared their lines.
Creggs were now beginning to counter ruck well and protect their own ball better and this allowed Mark Purcell to put them down in the Buccaneers half with some good kicking. Eric O Doherty, Adam Downey, Eoghan Browne and Ryan O Keeffe did well on their introduction and gave the Creggs effort some extra energy.
6 minutes before the end, some very committed defence and tackling from all Creggs players was rewarded when some super tacking in Midfield led to the ball breaking loose. Jack Tucker did very well to keep the move alive by kicking ahead on a couple of occasions and with the help of Jack Hanley turned the ball over and when Aodha Hession picked up and tried to feed his back line.
Then when a score looked very likely the Buccaneers defender who was standing offside grabbed the ball and the referee was left with no option but to award a penalty try which Mark Purcell converted to give Creggs a 7-5 lead that they held until the end.
Creggs Squad: Aaron Hannon, Karl Healy, Leigh Doyle, Ciaran Neil Smith, Sam Sullivan, Mark Purcell, Aodha Hession, Eoghan Browne, Ryan O Keefe, Diarmuid Quinn, Eric O Doherty, Adam Downey, Jonathan Whyte, Jack Keegan, John McDonnell, Jack Hanley, Lorcan Maher, Jack Tucker, Tom Farrell, Evan Comiskey, Thomas O Brien