Coleraine will find out later this week who they face in the next round of the Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup after a solid win away to Ards on Saturday.
It was a hard fought game but the ‘Cookstown’ sponsored visitors forged an impressive 10-41 victory over their Kukri Ulster Championship, Div 1, hosts.
It means they reach the second round of the competition and are in the hunt for the first trophy of the season.
Speaking after the game Coleraine coach Richard Boyd said: “It is great to get a win away in the Junior Cup against a strong Ards team who have been a league above us for some time.
“However, we were a pretty inconsistent at times, and we have a lot of things to work on, but it’s great to know that when we are not playing well we can still get victories - and a big victory at that, especially away from home.
“We have bigger games to come but I am really delighted to get this win on the board and keep the momentum going.
“Moving forward we will be working hard in training and hopefully we can keep it going and we can turn out more wins.
“Coming up we have games in the league against Donaghadee next week and then Armagh in the Conference League.
“These will be against tough opposition but there is a great team spirit amongst this new bunch of boys and we are up for the challenge.”
In the game on Saturday Coleraine captain Mikey Poskitt opened the scoring with a great sprint to touch down under the posts and then converted for the extras. 0-7
Ards did not take the score lying down and soon played into the visitor’s 22.
A surging scrum set the platform for the Ards No5 to force his way through the Coleraine defence for a converted score. 7-7
With 25 minutes on the clock a turn-over saw the ball move to a charging Brian Cochrane, making good ground before popping the ball inside to Stevie Callaghan.
He stepped around the defence to score under the posts. Poskitt was on target again. 7-14
A penalty opportunity for Ards drifted wide shortly before the break and the half ended with Steven Dickey charging his way through the opposition to score. The conversion attempt drifted just wide.
Half time score 7-19
In the opening phase of the second half both sides claimed three points from penalties. 10-22
Coleraine scrum half Rhys McAuley claimed the next points as he wriggled his way through the defence to score a converted try. 10-29
Coleraine were reduced to 14 men after a yellow card but maintained their hold on the game.
Solid scrummaging created a platform for the backline to attack. Cochrane made much of the ground before passing cleanly to a charging Nial Irwin for a great break up the wing and an unconverted try in the corner. 10-34
The final play of the game saw Coleraine piling on the pressure, Irwin again attacking and feeding Callaghan as he went in for his second try of the afternoon.
Poskitt finished a great day’s work securing the extra points from a difficult angle to leave the final score 10-41 in Coleraine’s favour.
In Coleraine the Seconds romped to a 57-3 win over Ards 2s.
The Thirds game was cancelled when the opposition Larne 3s were unable to provide a team.
This week Coleraine 1s entertain Donaghadee in the league, the Seconds travel to Clogher Valley and the 3s travel to BHSFP in Belfast.
Coleraine First XV: C Nash, D Greatorex, J Blair, A Corbett, D Ramage, R Bonnar, S Dickey, B Hughes, R McAuley, B Carstens, N Irwin, K McAuley, M Poskitt (Capt), S Callaghan, B Cochrane. Sub: M Ferguson.