Sunday 21 January 2018

Crosbie magic sinks 'Nure

St Gerard's 13 Terenure College 11 Tony Ward Leinster Schls Senior Cup

It took a touch of real class to see St Gerard's through to the last eight in another highly competitive, no-holds-barred encounter at Donnybrook yesterday.

Trailing 11-6 with five minutes to go, Gerard's needed something spectacular, and it was duly provided by the Crosbie brothers, Steve and Jody.

Out-half Steve slid in the most delicate grubber for centre Jody to storm through, gather and crash over at the posts. Josh Glynn converted and there was no way back for Terenure.

Gerard's began brightly, taking the lead inside three minutes with a penalty from Glynn.

Wing Barry Kelly replied with a penalty in the 12th minute as the 'Nure forward machine warmed to the task. With tactics tailored to meet their ball-handling strength, the close in driving and off-loading in the tackle was exemplary.

It pushed Gerard's to the limit -- but the tackling of Stephen Hackett-Delaney, Jack Conan and Steve Crosbie was heroic. The all-action Hackett-Delaney was the game's outstanding performer.

The only other score of a tense first half was a Glynn penalty following Rian O'Loughlin scorching 50m run.

Terenure upped the ante significantly on the restart. They dominated the third quarter and went 11-6 ahead with a penalty from Kelly and a try from lock Geoff Speiran, who was dominating the line-out.

It was almost curtains for the league winners when Glynn, attempting a crossfield kick, sliced directly to 'Nure speedster Sean O'Loughlin at full tilt. Glynn, though, atoned with an extraordinary match-saving tackle at the corner.

Then came the Crosbies' moment of magic, and Terenure, despite battling ferociously, could not conjure a winning score.

St Gerard's - J Glynn (capt); D Simmonds, R O'Loughlin, J Crosbie, J Desmond (A Carroll 41); S Crosbie, C O'Rourke (R Glynn 55); C McAlinden, C Hayde, C Lyons; F Boylan (A Bowtell 47), R Maxwell; S King, S Hackett-Delaney; J Conan.

Terenure - S Lowe; B Kelly, N Thornton (Captain), D McCormack, S O'Loughlin; N Lynch, N Casey; B Mooney, B Elliott, P Soave; G Speiran, L Cowhig (K Simpson 59); A Clarkin, N Lalor, E Joyce.

Ref - Barry O'Keefe (Leinster Branch).

Irish Independent

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