Monday 22 January 2018

Kearns gives Mary's the edge over 'Tarf

Lansdowne’s Scott Gardiner is tackled by Terenure’s Thomas Burke at the Aviva Stadium
Lansdowne’s Scott Gardiner is tackled by Terenure’s Thomas Burke at the Aviva Stadium Newsdesk Newsdesk

St Mary's College claimed the scalp of defending Division 1A champions Clontarf with a fine 23-20 win at Castle Avenue. Young outhalf Sean Kearns played a leading role once again for Mary's, completing his 13-point kicking haul with the decisive penalty in the 77th minute.

Kearns converted tries from tight-head and captain Brian McGovern and scrumhalf Paddy O'Driscoll to give Jamie Cornett's side a 17-12 interval lead. O'Driscoll was the only back to cross the whitewash, with 'Tarf's three touchdowns coming from props Vakh Abdaladze, Royce Burke Flynn and hard-carrying No 8 Tony Ryan.

Ryan's score, coupled with a Rob Keogh penalty in the 74th minute, saw the title holders square things up at 20-all, but Kearns' right boot guided Mary's to their first victory of the league campaign.

Lansdowne pushed three points clear at the top of Division 1A following a 29-5 bonus-point win over Terenure College. Terenure lie bottom of the table. Running out on the main pitch at the Aviva Stadium, Lansdowne quickly established control of the scrum through their front-row of Peter Dooley, Tyrone Moran and captain Ian Prendiville.

The Terenure scrum coughed up three penalties inside 24 minutes and with their loosehead Kieran Moloney in the sin-bin on the half-hour mark, Lansdowne duly forced a penalty try. Scott Deasy converted to add to his earlier penalty, giving the hosts a 10-0 interval advantage. The 2015 champions strung together three tries to claim their second bonus point of the campaign. No 8 Max Deegan crossed the whitewash as did front-rowers Ntinga Mpiko and Dooley. 'Nure salvaged some pride with an injury-time effort from Conor Finn.

At Temple Hill, Robin Copeland touched down twice as Young Munster roared to a 37-15 bonus-point success at Cork Constitution. Copeland's try on the stroke of half-time had the Cookies leading 13-10. A Tomás Quinlan penalty set Cork Con on their way to a 10-0 lead. Shane Daly crossed in the 20th minute. However, Munsters snapped back with successive penalties from David O'Mahony after 23 and 27 minutes. Copeland's first score, coupled with a penalty try, saw the visitors seize control up front and they were 25-10 to the good before Daly hit back for Con with a try. Further tries from replacement Alan Kennedy and Copeland sealed a five-point return.

UCD opened their win account in Division 1A for this season by overcoming Trinity 23-13. At College Park, Tom Foley (13 points) and try-scoring No 8 Peadar Timmins were two key men. Wingers Adam Byrne and Barry Daly bolstered UCD's Leinster contingent, and it was Daly's brilliant surge through the heart of the hosts' defence that led to Timmins' ninth-minute score.

Foley converted and added a penalty soon after for 10-0. A Jack McDermott penalty, 25 minutes in, got Dublin University up and running, and although an extended spell of pressure saw McDermott split the posts again, two more penalties from Foley had UCD 16-6 ahead at the interval.

Trinity's Colm Hogan notched a terrific try in the 53rd minute. McDermott's kick made it 16-13. It was UCD who had the final say, thanks to Jamie Glynn, who came on as a replacement. Glynn finished off a prolonged attack with a try under the posts, converted by Foley for a 10-point winning margin.

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