Roscommon Community College 16 St. Jarlath’s College 15

Roscommon Community College made history when defeating St. Jarlath’s College, Tuam to win their first ever rugby trophy, the Connacht Junior Development League on Wednesday last, November 26 at Ballyhaunis. In glorious conditions, an epic match saw a titanic battle, which was not decided until the very last kick of the game. Jarlath’s began the brighter and early pressure yielded a penalty, which was converted for a 3-0 lead. RCC responded and a long penalty from Michael Egan equalised the match at 3-3.

Jarlath’s had their best spell in the second quarter and were rewarded with a try in the right hand corner to give them an 8-3 lead. Just before half time RCC speeded up the game and massive pressure brought them to the Jarlath’s try line. Despite Jarlath’s losing a player to the sin bin, they defended resolutely and aided by some poor RCC decisions, got to half time leading 8-3.

The second began with early RCC pressure and a penalty was landed by Egan to narrow the gap to 8-6 in the first minute. RCC then raised their game and saw fine attacking play by Michael O’Brien, Mark Clogher and full back Adam Arnold. One such attack by Arnold led to a passing movement, which saw flanker Oisin Campbell run in from halfway for a brilliant try with 15 minutes to play. Egan converted under the posts and the score was now 13-8 in favour of RCC. Jarlath’s had to respond and RCC suffered a blow when captain Danny Arnold saw yellow with about six minutes left for play. RCC were now feeling the pressure and a relieving kick failed to find touch, which allowed the Tuam side to counter attack. A series of rucks saw an overlap created for Jarlath’s fullback to equalise the score at 13-13. The conversion was kicked and heartbreak, it seemed, was in store for RCC. The restart was fielded by Jarlath’s and cleared downfield, only for a following up player to be offside. Penalty on the 22 metre line for RCC and out to the right. Referee Damian Eames signalled the last kick of the game. Michael Egan showed nerves of steel to send the kick straight between the posts and create history for Roscommon Community College. The final whistle was blown and while it was heartbreak for Jarlath’s, celebrations began for RCC.

Roscommon CC: Adam Arnold, Jack Naughton, Kieran Ward, Cormac Conway, Mark Clogher, Michael O’Brien, Michael Egan, Adam Finnerty, Adam Bracken, Oisin Campbell, Tom Fallon, Oisin Keenan, Mark Treacy, Danny Arnold (c), Luca Stratford

St. Jarlath’s College: Michael Collins, Fionnan Cahill, Kane Boal, Adam Brady, Joe Staed, Matthew Fitzmaurice, Jack Ward, Ciaran Gleeson, Regan Warde, Conor Powderly, Michael Mitchell, Cormac Deignan, Alex Walsh, Keelan Greaney, Niall Carney.

Roscommon Community College Team which defeated St. Jarlaths College 16-15 in the Junior Development School’s League Final at Ballyhaunis

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