Our rugby season came to a close on Friday evening when our Seniors took on a Naas RFC selection in the annual Michael Higgins Memorial Game in Forenaughts.
Played in front of a large crowd, both sides tried to play entertaining rugby from the off. Naas started the better and took a 5 0 lead coming courtesy of some generous defence on our part. This seemed to get us going as we scored two tries through Cormac Meylor and Jack Cantillon to take a 14 5 lead into half time. In the second half, we added two more tries with Conor Thompson and Sam Coghlan-Murray crossing for the five pointers. Kicker Peter Osbourne was successful with all four conversions to see us win by 28 points to 13. Mike Higgins presented captain James Tracy with the Trophy afterwards while Rob O’Connor was named Newbridge College man of the match.
Some of the boys hoping to make the Senior 1st XV next year headed to Presentation College, Bray to take part in a 7’s competition. In a group with the hosts, Greystones RFC and Newpark Comprehensive, a panel of 12 transition and fifth years with little 7’s experience headed into the relative unknown on Sunday morning.
First up was Greystones RFC. This was a close affair for much of the game but the College pushed away in the final stages. Following the early set back of conceding, two tries from John Jennings, one from Phil O’Neill and a conversion each from Peter Osborne and Jennings saw the College secure a 19-7 win. Although the worked hard, Greystones couldn’t covert possession into points. This was in part due to some very good tackling back from the College.
Still trying to get to grips with the differences from the 15-a-side game the College next faced the hosts, Presentation College, Bray. Pres. got off to a great start with a try from their sprinting winger. The College fought back and a try from David Rigney and conversion from Osborne leveled the score. Pres. scored again but tries from O’Neill and Chris Deane, both converted by Osborne, pushed the College to a 21-14 win.
The final group match saw the College take on a skillful and well-drilled Newpark Comprehensive team. Although conceding first, the College looked to be getting into the grove of the 7’s game and an excellent try by Cathal Murtagh and conversion by Osborne put the College 7-5 up. In a game that could have gone either way, the spoils went to Newpark who scored their second try with 2 minutes remaining. Despite of giving their best efforts, the College would lose this one 10-7.
The disappointment of the final group game was compounded by the news that the College had been knocked out of the Cup competition on points difference. On the plus side a Plate semi-final awaited. The opposition was Presentation College, Cork. It was in this game that the College clicked and hit their stride in the 7’s game. Craig Grant showed great pace and set the College up for a great result with an early brace of tries. William O’Brien secured a brace of his own, the second seeing him run in from 40 metres after a fine interception. Deane denied Pres., Cork a score in their best scoring opportunity with a great steal five metres from the College line. Osborne then added a try and the scoring was wrapped up by Cillian Dempsey who weaved his way through the defense to dive over. Osborne added four conversions and the game ended 38-0 to the College.
And so to the Plate final. The opposition would be CBC Monkstown. Although having lost Glen Tai to a semi-final injury, and thus some pace out wide, the College went into the final confident. The game started well for the College and Grant went close on two occasions, each time being tackled just short of the CBC try line. But as the game went on the College took control and a first half brace from Rigney and a try from Jennings saw the College take a healthy lead to the break. The second half saw Jennings grab his second try and Osborne pick himself up his second and third tries of the competition. With him adding four conversions the College repeated their semi-final score line beating CBC Monkstown 38-0. Peter Osborne, who captained the side, had the honour of lifting the Senior Rice Plate. Well done to all who played. Finally, a word of congratulations and thanks to Pres. Bray for putting on great and well run tournament.
Squad: Chris Deane, Cillian Dempsey, Ciaran Fagan, Craig Grant, John Jennings, Robert Mullen, athal Murtagh, William O’Brien, Philip O’Neill, Peter Osborne, David Rigney, Glen Tai.
Also well done to the Inters and their coach Mr.Evesson on retaining the Junior Rice Cup also played in Pres Bray yesterday. They beat CBC Monkstown 22-5 in the final.
Well done to Mark Sutton’s team (Sutton’s Sea Lions) on winning the 43rd Doyle Cup Final on a score line of 29-10. Hard luck to Matthew O’Connor’s team (Matt’s Mafia) who were worthy runners-up!
Congratulations to Alyssa O'Neill who won the All Ireland Inter schools Senior Individual open show jumping championsip held in Wexford on Saturday. Congratulations also to Leanne O'Sullivan who cam 4th in the same championships, Ashley O'Sullivan who came 8th and Carolyn who came 12th. 70 competitors took part from all over Ireland including Northern Ireland. Of these only 23 made it through to the final round.
Congratulations to our two representatives Donal Delahunt and Kate Hensey in the Junior Individual showjumping championships. Both qualified for the final round and Donal came 4th overall and Kate came 18th. 52 competed and only 20 qualified for the final round.
The College was represented by 3 teams in the Team Championships. A total of 60 teams took part. Alyssa, Leanne, Ashley and Carolyn finished in 10th place. Una Delahunt, Aisling Doyle, Donal Delahunt and Clare Manning finished in 16th place and Hannah McDonnell, Emily Beere, Katye Hensey and Holly Hannigan came 19th out of 60. Congratulations to all.