Our Junior team produced their strongest performance of the season to defeat a good Ballina side in Heffernan Park on Sunday. Both teams were very evenly matched throughout the game with our lads finishing strongly in the last 10 minutes to grab the win and maintain their winning start to the season.
Their was nothing between the teams in the first half with most of the action played outside of both 22's as defense's were proving hard to break down, An Evan Flynn penalty was cancelled out by a penalty from Ballina which had the sides level at 3 points a piece at the interval. Ballina started to get the upper hand from the start of the second half as we found it hard to get out of our own half. Ballina got the first try of the game when they won a scrum against the head and moved the ball wide to score, the conversion was successful to leave the score 10-3. Ballina were piling on the pressure at this stage and they scored a second try to make the score 15-3. A crucial score came next for Corrib to get us back into the game, Some good work down the blind side released Darragh Conneally down the wing from inside our own 22, He outpaced their winger then kicked the ball behind the full back and won the race to dot down in the corner for an outstanding individual try. Evan Flynn added the touchline conversion to leave us trailing by 5.
Ballina came back at us again and were rewarded as they scored their 3rd try of the game to leave the scoreline 20-10. From here our lads dug really deep and showed great attitude to work their way down the pitch, some brilliant carriers from John McHugh and Mikey Loughs well assisted by the rest of the pack set up a great platform inside the Ballina 22 and allowed Evan Flynn to get over for our second try of the game and leave us trailing by just 5 points again. With the minutes counting down we found ourselves again inside the Ballina 22, With every big carry getting closer and closer to the Ballina line and eventually Sean Cunningham spotted a gap at the side of the Ballina ruck to dive over for his first senior try, Evan added the conversion to put us ahead by 2 with only 3 minutes on the clock and we held out for the win which secured our place in the semi-final of the Curley cup.
We had some brilliant performances all around the park and all the subs that came off the bench had a huge impact which shows a great squad mentality. Next up is the first round of the league where we play at home to Dunmore 2 weeks time in what is always a tough bruising encounter.
A special thanks to all at Ballina RFC for a good sporting game and brilliant hospitality afterwards.