Healthy Constitution dish out defeat to off-colour 'Tarf
Munster Academy starlet Shane Daly crossed for one try and set up another as Cork Constitution continued their impressive form with a 24-17 win over Clontarf yesterday.
Off-colour champions 'Tarf fell to their fifth defeat in seven games on a day when former Ireland international Joy Neville made history as the first woman to referee an Ulster Bank League Division 1A fixture.
An entertaining first half at Temple Hill ended 17-14 in the north Dubliners' favour, centre Matt D'Arcy darting through from halfway for their fifth-minute opener after an initial break by Tony Ryan.
Full-back Daly, 19, responded with his fifth try of the campaign for Constitution just four minutes later, but the visitors were back in front when D'Arcy's brother, flanker Adrian, touched down from a close range ruck in the 24th minute.
'Tarf full-back Conor Jennings added a penalty to both conversions, keeping Andy Wood's men in front for half-time despite a well-taken try from Con flanker James Murphy.
However, 'Tarf winger Mick McGrath, was well marshalled by the Con defence and the visitors were held scoreless through the second period.
Six minutes in, the in-form Daly broke through and flung an excellent 20-metre pass out for centre Ned Hodson to cross in the corner. Out-half Tomas Quinlan maintained the hosts' high standards with a terrific touchline conversion for 21-17.
The Leesiders, pressing for their fourth successive win, gave themselves a seven-point cushion with a Quinlan penalty, following Clontarf replacement Peter du Toit's 64th-minute sin-binning.
Both sides failed to turn pressure into points during the final quarter of an hour, Constitution coming under severe pressure late on but their determined defence thwarted 'Tarf's valiant efforts.
Young Munster maintained their two-point lead at the top of Division 1A after coming from behind to beat Terenure College 31-23 at Lakelands Park yesterday.
Flanker Niall Lalor's first-minute try set Terenure on their way to a 13-7 interval lead.
Munster recovered well, though, as winger David Gleeson was freed up for a 19th minute run to the line. However, two well-struck penalties from 'Nure full-back Jake Swaine, had the hosts in front at the break.
The Cookies' powerful pack was to the fore as the Limerick men responded with two tries in the space of six minutes, centre Jack Harrington and hooker and captain Ger Slattery both crossing the whitewash for a 21-13 turnaround.
Winger Marc Hiney's 65th-minute converted effort made it a one-point game and although Swaine took his impressive place-kicking tally to 13 points, 'Nure agonisingly fell short of even a losing bonus point.
Dublin University bounced back in fine style to claim a very impressive 27-7 win over Old Belvedere, running in four tries in the process.
Sean Coughlan's early sin-binning for a high tackle left Belvo shorthanded.
James Fennelly slotted over the resulting penalty for a 3-0 Trinity lead, and his half-back partner Daniel Joyce was instrumental in the first try which saw hooker Paddy Finlay plunge over.
Fennelly converted and the visitors added a second try before half-time through full-back Jack Kelly.
Turnovers were proving costly with Pierce Dargan snaffling his third lineout steal for the students, and winger Colm Hogan's timely defensive read near his own try-line saw Trinity win the ball back and centre Michael Courtney raced the length of the pitch for a seven-pointer.
Belvo salvaged some pride with a late attacking spurt that yielded a try for winger Aaron Sheehan beside the posts.
Garryowen threw off the shackles and ended their low-scoring run with a thrilling 43-38 triumph over St Mary's College at Dooradoyle.
The Light Blues tallied up seven tries to halt their three-game losing slide in the top flight.
Conan Doyle's charges had failed to score more than 16 points in any of their last five outings, but they were 22-7 in front by half-time as a stunned St Mary's struggled to keep up, and set the pace for a five-point deficit in the end.
Sunday Indo Sport