SCHOOLS’ CUP RUGBY: Carrickfergus Grammar avenge early season defeat by Lurgan College


Carrickfergus won the one that mattered with this success over Lurgan College in the first round of the Schools’ Cup.

Carrick's Christian Robinson  in action with Lurgan's Jonathan Hunter

Carrick's Christian Robinson in action with Lurgan's Jonathan Hunter

The Co Armagh side had won a friendly earlier in the season.

The game, played in blustery conditions at Irwin Park, started with the Carrickfergus dominating the early stages with the wind advantage.

Adam Urquhart and Reece Berry got through a lot of work.

These players managed to stifle the speed of the ball the Lurgan team required from the rucks which, in turn, ensured the visitors were unable to mount positive front foot attacks.

Indeed, it was the Carrickfergus Grammar School team that took a 5-0 lead when Christian Robinson displayed some great footwork, allied to his pace, to outwit the Lurgan defence and go over for an unconverted try.

Carrick missed two penatly chances before Lurgan scored.

It was Ryan Wilson, the scrum half, who put the next points on the board, when he was successful with a penalty kick, to reduce the deficit to 5-3.

Somewhat against the run of play, Carrickfergus increased their lead to 10-3 just before the break.

Team captain, Jake Porter, combined with his fellow centre, Christian Robinson, to put David Carse in for a try.

The conversion was missed but Carrick had a 10-3 lead and it was to give them confidence in the second.

When they began to dominate at scrum time Lurgan were having to dig in deep.

Off scrum ball, fullback Fionn McCormack, ran in for a try and Marc Ellison converted for a 17-3 advantage.

Lurgan mounted something of a revival with Victor MacKenzie, Nathan Moffett and Harry Simpson leading the way.

In spite of their best intentions, they ran up against a well-organised Carrick defence which ensured the visiting midfield attack of Jamie Hunter, Jonny Hunter and Stephen Logan was stifled.

It was the home team that finished the stronger when the combined efforts of Scott Henderson, Paul Nelson, David Stewart and Tom Gilpin created the space for Christian Robinson to touch down for his second try of the game.

The conversion was unsuccessful.