26 Jan Rugby Team qualify for JCT
DGS Make History in Qualifying for the Leinster Junior Cup
DGS 7 – 0 The King’s Hospital (KH)
Monday 25th January at St. Mary’s College RFC in Dublin saw the most significant rugby match in the history of Dundalk Grammar School with an ‘in form’ junior team bidding for a place in the Fr. Godfrey Cup Final, their third final of the season. This game, with a successive eleven match unbeaten run at stake, also offered the opportunity of qualification for the prestigious Leinster Schools Junior Cup.
Dundalk Grammar School set the tempo right from the off, attacking their opponents and gaining significant ground inside the half-way line. Within three minutes Flyn Kiernan had an opportunity to put points on the board from a penalty, only for the ball to fall short of the posts. Relentless pressure by the pack and particularly from the back-row trio of Andrew Cox, Daniel Molloy and Sean Fitzpatrick gave their backs an opportunity to put the ball wide, allowing full-back Flyn Kiernan to come into the line and touch down under the posts on the fifth minute. Flyn added the conversion to give DGS a seven point cushion.
KH benefited through a knock-on from the re-start which allowed their powerful pack to test the Grammar defence. Out-half Jack Connolly and centres Max McGloin and David Murdock were solid and managed to break-up their opponent’s forward surge. In the twelfth minute turn-over ball in the ruck by Peter Kerley and Luke McSherry gave their backs another opportunity to attack and David Murdock was almost in for a certain try, only for the ball to be knocked forward. Much of the first half continued with even exchanges by both teams; Zac Coan’s delivery in the line-out was superb given the difficulty the strong breeze posed, while Jake Moran caused havoc for KH on their own put-in. Half-time DGS 7 – 0 KH.
With the second half underway KH began to use their driving maul to good effect, opting to gain ground along the touch-line. Despite their advance Sean Fitzpatrick, Andrew Cox and Tobi Akinseloyian managed to turn-over ball on several occasions and counter. Gerald Boylan was excellent at scrum-time and made a timely interception and turn-over in the 45th minute. Wingers Thomas Clarke and Dillon Dunne were kept busy by KH’s tactic of using the breeze to punt ball in behind them. However both players were on their game and countered very well. In the final seven minutes KH really piled the pressure on to secure a try but DGS, as ever, were resolute in defence, Andrew Cox and T.A. Irwin stood out in securing turn-over ball and alleviating any danger in the dying minutes.
The final whistle by referee Paul Dolan was welcomed with jubilation by Grammar players and supporters, the significance of this hard fought victory becoming apparent in the minutes that followed the end of the game. Final result DGS 7 – 0 The King’s Hospital.
Congratulations to the entire squad of players on another fantastic performance. The team has now qualified for the Duff and Fr. Godfrey Cup Finals (no dates set) and enter the Leinster Schools Junior Cup Competition for the first time ever. Their first round match in the Junior Cup takes place next Monday 1st February against CBC Monkstown at Old Belvedere RFC, kick-off 3.00pm. We hope to see you there.
DGS Junior Cup Team: Tobi Akinseloyian, Zac Coan, Peter Kerley, Luke McSherry, Jake Moran, Sean Fitzpatrick, Andrew Cox, Daniel Molloy, Gerald Boylan, Jack Connolly (Captain), Max McGloin, David Murdock, Thomas Clarke, Dillon Dunne, Flyn Kiernan. Replacement: T.A. Irwin for Luke McSherry (48th minute)
Match Report by Mr. E. Murphy & Mr. A. Norton.