Saturday 29 April 2017

Maher brace sends 'Rock storming into semi-finals

Blackrock College 27 Terenure College 7 Leinster Schools Senior Cup

Blackrock’s Alan Francis gets away from Jack Cooke during the Leinster Schools Senior Cup match at Donnybrook Picture: Sportsfile
Blackrock’s Alan Francis gets away from Jack Cooke during the Leinster Schools Senior Cup match at Donnybrook Picture: Sportsfile

Impressive Blackrock College booked their place in the semi-final with a comprehensive triumph over Terenure at Donnybrook.

A brace of Tom Maher tries helped 'Rock to open up an early gap over their south Dublin rivals and, even though 'Nure responded with a much-needed Zac Vaughan score, the 68-time winners dismissed any notions of a shock result with an impressive second-half display.

It took 'Rock just six minutes to break the deadlock, as Maher sprinted over the whitewash after he was picked out on the right flank by Peter O'Reilly.

This score was supplemented by O'Reilly's conversion, and following excellent approach work from full-back Tom Roche, Maher dotted down for his second try on 20 minutes.

Deficit

However, 'Nure reduced the deficit before the half-hour mark, when Vaughan dived over the line at the end of a fine team move.

Mark Fabian's superb conversion made it 12-7 at the break, but 'Rock pushed on again when the action resumed.

'Rock scrum-half Patrick Patterson grounded four minutes after the restart, and when O'Reilly added a penalty in the 59th minute, the outcome was placed beyond any doubt.

Replacement Mark Phelan completed the scoring with a simple finish from the final attack of the game, as Justin Vanstone's charges progressed in emphatic style.

Blackrock join Belvedere in the last four.

Today, Clongowes, who squeezed past surprise packages St Fintan's in the last 16, take on St Mary's College in Donnybrook.

The quarter-final round will be completed tomorrow when Cistercian College Roscrea - who won the title two years ago - square off against Gonzaga.

Blackrock College - PT Roche; T Maher (M Phelan 68), J Moriarty, R Deegan (G Jones 19), D Heavey; P O'Reilly, P Patterson (R Fahy 68); G Coyne (C Delaney 66), S McLoughlin (S Molony 54), T Clarkson (A Savage 66); A Murphy, C Ryan (M Carroll 55); J Fairley (M McGagh 54), A Francis, C Reilly.

Terenure College - S Dardis; L Murnaghan (R McInnes 69), A La Grue, D Henry-Hayes, Z Vaughan; M Fabian, M Eaton (G Morgan 59); A Tuite, H O'Neill (J Boland 69), J Kerins (B O'Hara 44); J Quirke, A Melia; J Cadell, J Cooke, J O'Hare.

ref - B McNiece (Leinster)

Irish Independent

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