U20s v Munster900Connacht came into this U20 Interpro fixture needing a victory after last weeks 27-7 defeat at the hands of Ulster in Kingspan Stadium.
Connacht started well and twice had the Munster line-out under early pressure with excellent territorial kicking from out-half Aidan Moynihan and scrum-half Conor Lowndes.
Munster were struggling to string phases together but made their first inroads into the Connacht half when number eight St. Leger made a superb break down the blindside from a scrum.
St. Leger then found winger Greg O’Shea on the right flank but the ball was knocked forward in contact and the chance was gone.
Connacht scored the first try on 14 minutes with a well-worked backline move as Ben Ridgeway and Dwayne Corcoran combined in the middle.
The ball was then shifted out wide for full back Anthony McGivney and he showed great pace to take the defence on the outside before slipping a pass back inside for Oisín Leahy to cross.
Moynihan added the conversion and Connacht led 7-0.
Munster replied soon after when Lyons kicked the first Munster points with a well-struck penalty from the left to make it 7-3.
Lyons’ kicking from hand was exemplary with full-back Stephen Fitzgerald solid under the high ball but Connacht were on top at the breakdown and preventing Munster from building any momentum.
Munster came out after the break eager to make up for a lacklustre first half performance and were rewarded within five minutes as Stokes touched down.
The try came from the first period of concerted pressure on the Connacht line. St. Leger initially made the break off another solid scrum with Stokes eventually diving over under the posts with the forwards central to the effort.
Lyons added the easy conversion to make it 10-7 to Munster.
Connacht were reduced to 14 when tight-head prop Conan O’Donnell was sent to the sin-bin for consistent infringement in the scrum.
They managed to weather the storm, though and made it 10-all on 61 minutes with Lowndes long-range penalty just about sailing through the posts.
The game was on a knife edge now but the pendulum soon swung Connacht’s way when Stokes was sent to the bin for an infringement at the breakdown on 68 minutes as Connacht returned to their full compliment.
With just eight minutes remaining, Connacht regained the lead after Munster were pinged for not rolling away and Lowndes showed great composure to put his side back in front.
Lyons missed a very difficult penalty shortly afterwards and Connacht showed great discipline to keep Munster at bay and hold onto their well-merited victory.
Connacht Out Half and former Munster graduate,Aidan Moynihan grabbed the MOTM award at the end of the game.
Connacht finish their U20 Interpro campaign next Saturday at The Sportsground with the visit of Leinster at 4pm.

Munster: Stephen Fitzgerald (Capt.)(Shannon); Greg O’Shea (Shannon), Paul Kiernan (UCC), Will Leonard (Shannon), Stephen McMahon (Garryowen); Gearóid Lyons (Young Munster), Jack Cullen (Shannon); Liam O’Connor (Christian Brothers College), Sean McNulty (UCD), Liam McMahon (Old Crescent); Frank Bradshaw-Ryan (Shannon), Glen Stokes (Cork Constitution); Conor Barry (UCC/Bandon), Luke O’Leary (Cork Constitution), David St.Leger (Presentation College Cork).
Replacements: Luke O’Halloren (St Munchin’s College), Brendan Quinlan (Cork Constitution), Greg Roche (Cork Constitution), Aaron Hogan (UCC), Cormac Blake (Crescent College Comprehensive), Jason Higgins (Christian Brothers College), Tomás Quinlan (Cork Constitution), Ed O’Keefe (Young Munster).

Connacht: Anthony McGivney (NUIG); Joseph D’Arcy (Galwegians RFC), Dwayne Corcoran (Corinthians), Ben Ridgeway (Galwegians), Oisin Leahy (NUIG); Aidan Moynihan (Galwegians), Conor Lowndes (Galwegians); Conor Kyne (Galwegians), Rory Litchfield (Galwegians), Conan O’Donnell (Sligo); Cian Romaine (Buccaneers), James Doyle (Capt.) (Galwegians); Marc Kelly (Corinthians), Alex Penny (NUIG), Stephen McVeigh (Buccaneers).
Replacements: John Healy (Westport), Conor Doyle (Buccaneers), Ryan O’Meara (Buccaneers), Roy Stanley (NUIG), Joshua Pim (Buccaneers), Ricky Dixon (Buccaneers), Andrew Shanahan (NUIG), Dylan Kelso (Buccaneers)


U18 and U19 matchday squads named for Interpro openers vs Ulster