Date: 14th April 2012
|Under 17||No Game|
Carrick Under13s finish season on a high………
Carrick Under13s travelled to the Mid Ulster Sports Complex in Cookstown last Saturday to play Portadown in the final of the Ulster Bowl competition. He game itself was to be played on the new 4G artificial surface at the complex which allows for a fast free flowing style of rugby to be played.
At the end of an intensive warm the Under 13 coaching staff had asked the players to make this game the best performance of the season and it was quickly evident that the players were going to respond to this challenge with both the forwards and the backs from Carrick starting the game in dominant fashion. Within the first 15 minutes Carrick had 3 unanswered scores on the board and were looking like running away with the game.
In the forwards both props Cameron McClean and Matthew Ellis were providing great go forward ball and the back row of Kyle Bell, James Heyburn and captain Gareth Hartley were turning over a large percentage of any ball the opposition did win. In the backs outhalf Matthew Carson and Matthew Dalton at inside centre in particular were causing the opposition great difficultly with frequent line breaking runs and by the end of the first have Carrick had scored another 3 unanswered tries, leaving the score 34 -0 at the interval.
The second half saw Carrick continue to dominant all facets of the game and the large crowd watching the game were treated to a festival of running rugby from the East Antrim side. Stand out tries from Conor Gascoigne, Matthew Dalton and Curtis Hoban helped Carrick seal an emphatic 64-0 win on the day. Apart from the magnificent attacking display the foundations of this great performance were based firmly on a superb defensive display which never allowed Portadown to really find a foothold in the game. This defensive effort was optimised by back row player Kyle Bell who put in what can only be described as the tackle of the season.
Captain Gareth Hartley led his players up to receive their medals and the players then travelled back to the clubhouse at the Tom Simms Memorial Park for a lunch sponsored by Forever Living Products.
A great way to end the season and a fitting reward for all the hard work the squad has put in at training. Once again a big thanks to our Youth sponsors NK Ltd for all their support throughout the year.
Squad: C McClean, J Mitchell, M Ellis, M Tweed, I Dick, R Davis, K Bell, J Heyburn, G Hartley, A White, M Carson, M Dalton, I Woodside, C Gascoigne, C Hoban, E Corry, L Bell, N McErlean, L Bell.
Carrick U15s Two Point Deficit
Virginia RFC U15s 12 Carrickfergus RFC U15s 10
In this, Carrick’s penultimate game of the season it was too little, too late to redeem a two point deficit against their Co Cavan opponents.
The game played at a bright & sunny Rifle Park Banbridge was the league playoff decider with Virginia taking the honours in what was always going to be a closely contested affair.
For all of that both teams tried hard to avoid showing their skills in what was often a mistake strewn game with only flashes of brilliance from two very capable sides.
The failure of players to recognise the importance of gaining & keeping position & possession led to frequent poor decision making.
Virginia had an early grip on the ball but Carrick’s major line speed & firm tackling prevented them from making progress, the Virginia forwards however insisted on trying to pummel the Carrick pack but got no joy with some good groundwork forcing turnovers.
A sustained Carrick attack saw them gain a foothold In Virginia territory & for once a structured build-up saw clean ball reach out half Wallace. Not for the first time this season slick passing & neat footwork in the 10-12 channels saw Jake Porter burst through for the score which the centre richly deserved for his determination alone.
Wallace added the conversion & Carrick were 7-0 ahead.
As would be expected this added a bite to the next Virginia attack. Carrick were unable to control the ball & the possession allowed their energetic & elusive centre to set off on a strong run.
Carricks scrambling defence went up a gear & when the attack was halted Virginia transgressed at the breakdown & Carrick cleared.
On resumption of the second half Virginia kept on the offensive & were rewarded when Carrick surrendered the ball 40 metres out , the ball was transferred to their ever elusive number 12 who crossed for the try which was goaled for a 7 all game.
This stirred Carrick who attacked strongly from the kickoff exerting great pressure in the Virginia danger zone.
As before Virginia transgressed on the ground & Wallace stepped up to kick the penalty restoring Carricks lead to 10-7.
This should have been the moment for Carrick to kick on to victory but once again poor decision making & inaccuracy prevented them from stepping up the gear needed.
One such inaccuracy in attack allowed Virginia turnover ball which they hoofed in to the Carrick 22, poor defensive discipline gave Virginia two penalties on the trot and when unable to breach the Carrick line close in they moved the ball left.
With Carricks defensive line in disarray Virginia were able to touch down wide on the left for the decisive score.
With several minutes remaining it was all set for Carrick to return to claim a winning score but the gremlins of poor decision making & lack of accuracy were not to be banished & Virginia held on to the slenderest of leads for a well deserved victory.
This was easily one of Carrick’s poorest performances of the season but they were manful & dignified in defeat congratulating Virginia for the win & applauded them through the tunnel with three rousing cheers. Virginia’s response, for victors was somewhat less effusive perhaps in the knowledge that they had possibly got off the hook.
Final score Virginia RFC U15s 12 Carrickfergus RFC U15s 10