McKinney helps Ulster end campaign on a high note
Ulster Ravens 27 Cornish Pirates 23
Ulster Ravens inflicted a first defeat of the British & Irish Cup campaign on Cornish Pirates -- a result that may deny the visitors a home draw in the last eight.
The Ravens, with nothing at stake, were a bit fortunate with a late rally as, like last week at Jersey, they missed kickable penalties.
The Pirates visited the home '22' on three occasions in the first half and each time they scored. A weak tackle allowed Matt Evans in for a try which Angus Sinclair goaled before adding two penalties.
Ulster opened with a James McKinney penalty and he added the points to an Adam Macklin try just before the break to make it 13-10 in the visitors' favour.
Joe Atkinson then touched down to put the Pirates further ahead but the Ravens came back when Stuart McCloskey scored for McKinney to convert, and he later added a penalty to level.
Sinclair added a third penalty to regain the advantage for the Pirates, but McKinney replied with a late try to win it and bring a bright end to a disappointing competition for Ulster.
Ulster Ravens -- P Nelson; R Scholes, R Andrew, S McCloskey, D Busby; J McKinney, M Heaney; K McCall, N Annett, A Macklin; L Stevenson (c), N McComb; C Joyce, L Dow, M McComish. Reps: P Jackson, A Warwick, M Cromie, M Campbell, J Atkinson, D Shanahan, R Adair.
Cornish Pirates -- M Evans; K Goss, T Riley, A Dancer, K Moyle; A Sinclair, M Pope; K Davies, A Carpenter (c), S Cahill; N Patrick, W Graulich; J Parker, J Atkinson, T Duncan. Reps: T Channon, J Andrew, D Barry, M Bolwell, T Kessell, T Hendrickson, M Bodilly.
REF -- L Linton