Following last week’s heroics against MCB, Coleraine Grammar School 1st XV were on the road again for their latest encounter.
This time they were off to County Tyrone to take on Royal School Dungannon.
On a cold, wet and blustery morning, it was the Coleraine men who started strongest. Excellent game management from scrum-half Ryan Gillan and accurate kicking from the boot of out-half Calum Smyth forced Dungannon deep into their own half from the outset.
With only five minutes on the clock, Coleraine were able to turn pressure into points with impressive back rower Hugo Mawhinney barging over the try line to open the scoring. Smyth coolly added the extras.
Shortly after the restart, Coleraine continued where they left off and soon found themselves back inside the opposition half. Props Christy Hamilton and Mac O’Neill provided a solid platform at the scrummage which allowed Coleraine’s back line ample time and space to show their lethal attacking potential with speedster Thomas Lavery touching down in the corner.
Again, Coleraine rallied after the restart and put multiple phases together with Messrs George McKeag and Peter Wisener making inroads into the Dungannon defence. From a penalty, influential captain David Greatorex threw caution to the wind and opted to kick to touch.
From the lineout, the formidable Coleraine pack formed a destructive rolling maul from which Mawhinney crashed over for his second try of the game.
Coleraine continued to show their dominance when, with 28 minutes on the clock, they were awarded a scrum on the opposition 22 metre line. Once more, the Coleraine pack drove forward as one giving the backs another opportunity to attack. A dizzying combination of intricate running lines and handling tore Dungannon’s defensive line apart with winger Alistair Telfer touching down in the left hand corner to increase Coleraine’s lead to 22 points.
Despite falling behind on the score board, Dungannon refused to give up and after a lengthy stoppage, the home side rallied and put multiple phases together inside the Coleraine half before their replacement tighthead prop barged his way over the try line. The home side’s scrum-half added the extras leaving the score at 22-7 at halftime.
The second half proved to be a scrappy affair with most of the rugby being played in the middle third of the pitch. Consequently, it wasn’t until the 60th minute when Coleraine’s standout centre Matthew Norris grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and used his size and strength to force his way over the opposition’s try line. Smyth’s conversion dissected the uprights leaving the score 29-7.
With minutes and after numerous phases, the ball found its way once more to the hands of the illusive Telfer who weaved his way through Dungannon’s hapless defence to touch down for his second and the final try of the game. Final score: RSD 7 – 34 CGS.
All in all, another clinical performance by CGS who are proving to be a side to be reckoned with this season. Flanker Hugo Mawhinney stood out in the pack and Matthew Norris and Alistair Telfer showed their class in the back line. A special thank you should go to James Carson who refereed the game to a very high standard and to RSD for their kind hospitality. The question is: can CGS make it four wins on the bounce when they entertain BRA?
In other results, the 2nd XV and the Medallion ‘A’s both lost out to RSD, however the U14s and the U13s both recorded hard fought victories. Well done to all the CGS players who did their school proud and thank you to all the coaching staff who continue to work tirelessly for the betterment of their respective teams.