Rainey II 20 Dungannon II 26
There was a very entertaining spectacle at Hatrick Park on Saturday, when Dungannon Seconds clashed with their Rainey counterparts.
Conditions were perfect and both sides obliged in a closely fought contest.
Plunkett McCallan fielded the kick-off and Dungannon made an early visit to danger zone. Alas, a crooked throw gave the scrum to Rainey and they cleared the danger.
Undeterred, Dungannon remained on front foot and, when Robert McLean was obstructed. midfield Ben Matchett drilled to the corner. With the experienced trio of McCallan and the Smith brothers in the forward unit, the resultant drive saw Peter Smith crash over. Matchett added extras.
Rainey bounced back to test the defence but the visitors went further ahead on. Timmy Smith went close with a drive before McCallan proved unstoppable at two metres. Dungannon looked set for a third but a turnover saw Rainey’s Gavin McGuckin race away, 5-12 at the break.
Rainey, with breeze advantage, soon took advantage as Dungannon made a clumsy start. Winger Aidan Walsh skipped in to make it 10-12.
With the lead now two points Dungannon upped the ante and a chip and chase from Andrew Lee saw him collect and race away for Matchett to add the conversion.
Going into the final quarter Rainey moved the ball right for Paul Dillon to touch down, Aaron Murphy converting to make it 17-19. Eight minutes from time the hosts grabbed a first time lead when Murphy hit the target with a penalty.
But the visitors went back in front following a drive as Rainey infringed with the referee dishing out a penalty try and a yellow card to a forward. McLean popped over a simple conversion and Dungannon, now 26-20 in front, managed to hold on until final whistle.
Ballymoney III 10 Fourths 14
Dungannon Fourths are through to Forster Plate final via a hard-fought battle at Kilraughts Road on Saturday.
Richard Wright sped away from a ruck, his try converted by Matthew Rodgers giving the visitors a perfect start.
’Money hit back strongly and it was another 20 minutes before Dungannon increased their lead, the hosts turned over at a lineout and Jeremy Baird quick to scored from a 20m run. Again Rodgers converted and the half ended 0-14.
In the second half big tackles and even bigger hits kept the crowd entertained during a scoreless third quarter.
Then ’Money came into it when Andrew McNaugher touched down in the corner, conversion missed but signalling a tense final quarter.
Baird was victim to a yellow card and the home side added pain via a second try per Andrew Skelton, 10-14 time to close the game down as visitors showed qualities in defence in the face of a late rally - to meet CIYMS III in final.
Team manager Ali Moore was delighted: “The character, desire, passion and pride in jersey was at forefront of ta performance second to none”.
Ulster Senior League
Dungannon 31 Harlequins 19
Dungannon’s final SONI game has left them as likely runners-up in the league, scoring four tries to three in a game that started brightly for city men with a try within five minutes, winning a penalty lineout and John McConnell driven over, fly-half Tim Emerson converted for 0–7.
From a super scrum James McMahon touched down, Paul Armstrong’s conversion levelling and then, after phases involving forwards and backs, Matthew Montgomery streaked in to give for the lead, Armstrong converting, 14–7.
A neat chip over the top started a move that led to their second try, Emerson collected his kick, evading a defender and sending Ollie Loughead away for a try, 14 – 12. A Gerard Treanor kick put Dungannon into 22, their scrum-half infringing for Paul Armstrong to increase the lead via penalty.
In second half Armstrong Stephen Leyburn got a try, Armstrong converting, 24 –12
Quins hit back, Mark Glover over for a try converted by Adam White, Dungannon reacting well with redoubtable Timothy Smith forcing his way over for the bonus point try converted by Armstrong.
Team: Paul Armstrong. Darren Simpson, Matthew Montgomery, Mark Faloon, Jonathan Toal, John Buckley, Gerard Treanor. Glen Sinnamon, Daniel Maxwell, Philip Fletcher. John Joe Kane, Ross McCaughey. David Leyburn, Mark Riddell, James McMahon. Jamie McNeill, Sean O’Hagan, Timothy Smith, James Bates, Seamus Mallon
Dungannon Ladies 26
Dungannon Ladies travelled to in-form Enniskillen, Lucy Turkington scoring the opening try before the home side hit back with seven-pointer. Klara Wiggins regained the lead for Dungannon when she touched down for Turkington to convert. Katie Burns set the scene alight with a 70m dash, Turkington converting, 19-7.
In second half Sarah Shrestha dotted down for a converted try before Enniskillen replied in similar fashion.
Dungannon: Lucy Turkington, Katie Burns, Laura Saunders, Kacy Robinson, Klara Wiggins, Sarah Shrestha, Megan Roberts, Shannon McCaul, Caitlyn Lynch, Kim Johnston, Hannah Scott-Burrows
In the quiz Fork Handles edged out Just Us in a tiebreak, this week’s quiz on Wednesday in aid of Cycle Against Suicide.