Ballina 19 – Sligo 19
Sligo U16s travelled to Ballina RFC last Saturday for the hotly anticipated Connacht Cup quarter final and local derby. Ballina U16s took to the field full of confidence after a great year of results, having only lost a single game all year and having had comprehensive victories over Sligo both home and away. However, this was cup rugby and the script was promptly thrown out the window, as the weather played its part in upsetting the favourites.
From the first whistle the home side quickly showed their dominance and put 7points on the board. However, Sligo kept their heads and patiently worked their way up the field to score under the posts and level the scores.
Both sides tried to gain the upper hand with the Ballina scrum having the upper hand and the Sligo lineout having more success.
Ballina made the most of the wind behind their backs and proceeded to put another converted try between the two sides. The visitors again kept a level head and soon after crossed the whitewash to level it. Possession continued to change hands and both sides were battling the elements, as well as each other. Again, it was the home side that put another try on the score board, but the strong wind pushed it wide of the posts and the difference between the teams was 5points. With the clock ticking by, Sligo knew they had to make one last determined push for the Ballina line. The strong Sligo pack set up a maul and drove for the line, the Sligo scrum half broke down the blind side and touched down in the corner to even the scores.
The difficult conversion drifted wide, much to the relief of the home crowd. This was a hugely entertaining game and the quarter final replay will now be played in Hamilton Park on
Sligo: Adam Fox, Adam Hunter, Ben Garvey, Brady Lynch, Ciaran Cawley, Ciaran Dolan, Conal Kennedy, Cormac Fahey, Conor Mullaney, Dara Foy, Eoin Ryan, Evin Ballantine, Ewan Ripon, Fionn Feeley, Fionn O’Hehir, Jim Sweeney, Kian Reynolds, Leo Layden, Liam Candon, Niall O’Connor, Oisin Cregg, Oisin Diffley, Olan Martin, Ronan Gray, Sean Gilvarry, Sonny Muldoon, Eoghan Lang, Hugo Filan.