Top Oil Connacht Schools Junior Development Cup Final

Calasanctius Oranmore 5

Presentation Headford 0

In extremely challenging weather conditions at the Sportsground on Wednesday, Calasanctius Oranmore captured Top Oil Junior Development Cup title with an impressively organised performance against a spirited Presentation Headford side.

Junior Dev2 500The cold winds were made worse by driving rain as the game kicked off at the College Road venue and both schools were in for a tough afternoon as a result, In what was a fully committed forwards battle from start to finish neither side were found wanting in the commitment department.

The winning of the game came in how each side used the elements, Calasanctius might may have taken a while to make a breakthrough but they controlled possession for large swathes of the first half and made sure that the majority of the game was played in the half of the Headford school playing in their first ever schools rugby final.

The breakthrough for Oranmore arrived six minutes before half time after a spell of close to ten unbroken minutes in the Headford 22. Headford’s influential openside flanker Cathal Ruddy saw yellow for infringing at the ruck and within a minute, Calasanctius’ strong and athletic winger Brian McSweeney had burrowed over for a try that would prove to be the games only score.

Turning around with the elements, the Headford school appeared to be well placed but in difficult conditions their set piece suffered and as a result they couldn’t build the kind of platform that was required to get a score against a strong defence. Patrick Loughlin, Darragh Nee and Mark Jennings carried well but a pre game injury to their number eight Colm Joyce worked against them.

Junior Dev 500As the half wore on, the Oranmore school frustrated their opponents with strong ball retention and good work at the breakdown. Morgan O’Brien played a key role in this at svn as did captain Cian Huxford at eight and Cillian McCarthy at six. It was a day for back rows and by a small margin, the Oranmore school had the edge.

Calasanctius College: Kealon Darcy; Brian McSweeney, Jerry Durkan; Thomas McFarland, Oisin Lyons; Declan Gill, Ciaran Whelan; Daniel Hano, Mark O’Brien, Conor Gillespie; Iarlaith Morrin Laheen, Jamie Kelliher; Cillian McCarthy, Morgan O’Brien, Cian Huxford.

Replacements: Jack Egan for McFarland; Eoin Ryan for Ciaran Whelan.

Presentation College Headford: Gerry Column; Jamie Toher, Darren Higgins, Carrick Roberts, Gavin Lee; Cian O’Toole, Evan Mohan; Cian Camplisson, Mark Jennings, Colin Bolton; Ronan Walsh, Darragh Nee, Patrick Loughlin, Cathal Rodd, Darragh Morrin.

Replacements: Colin O’Reilly for Morrin.

 

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