Mannion clinches Garbally double
Garbally College 31 CBS Roscommon 6
Garbally College head coach Kevin Tierney says his experienced players made the difference as the reigning champions retained their Connacht Schools Senior Cup crown at the Sportsground.
The 18-year-old out-half Stephen Mannion, son of former Ireland international Noel, was only standing in at out-half but he gave a stunning personal display.
Just like last year he controlled the game as Garbally completed the double on a day when the Ballinasloe school secured a 47th senior crown.
"We have a lot of Leaving Certs playing there, and size matters in this age-group. It paid off in the end," said Tierney.
"Our out-half, Cian Treacy, got injured and missed today but Stephen really stood up in a tough place to play."
Garbally were 14-0 up at half-time after playing with the breeze, and when CBS Roscommon's comeback fell short Mannion and Oisín McCormack showed their class for a comprehensive victory.
The reigning champions dominated the opening half but had to settle for just two tries from Seán Horkan and Shea Hennessy.
By half-time, scrum-half Matthew Devine was yellow-carded and two penalties from Mark Purcell reduced the arrears as CBS Roscommon gave themselves a chance.
The first-time finalists couldn't sustain that and Mannion raced down the left wing to score in the 51st minute, before two further efforts from McCormack.
Garbally College - S Jennings; S Hennessy (C Goode 69), S O'Carroll, J Carry, S Horkan; S Mannion, M Devine (C Finn 60); S Egan (J Ryan 70), C Dolan (O Dooley 57), J Curley (J Dempsey 39); F Finneran, P Galvin (J Claffey 39); M Mitchell (J Noone 64), O McCormack, P Grehan (K Blackweir 70).
CBS Roscommon - M Dunne; R O'Keeffe (A Lyons 53), C Glennon, M Purcell, C Walsh; T Lambe, A Hession; T Farrell, R McGuinness, J Tucker; C Rohan, L Maher; J McDonnell, J Martin, J Keegan (R Lambe 64).
Ref - J Cairns
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