AIL rugby: Students’ losing streak continues despite brave effort

AIL rugby: Students’ losing streak continues despite brave effort
UCC's Rory Suttor keeps hold of the ball as James Taylor takes a conversion in windy conditions at The Mardyke. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

UCC 12 Terenure College 14

UCC suffered their 11th successive defeat in Division 1A of the Energia All Ireland League losing out to Dublin visitors Terenure College in a closely fought game at the Mardyke.

In another tight finish, the Students managed to pick up their seventh losing bonus point which shows how close again they came to getting their fourth win of the campaign.

Credit to College who showed great courage and commitment throughout the 80 minutes but they were again dejected when the final whistle sounded.

College are just a point above bottom side Ballynahinch and two behind Dublin University with only four games remaining, but they play both these sides in their final two games.

The numbers of the Terenure jerseys were very difficult to identify even for their own large travelling support.

Despite playing into the strong wind in the opening half the students led 12-7 at the interval but were unable to press home their advantage in the second half.

UCC played it tight in the opening exchanges and when Cian Barry who dominated the line outs won a ball close to the line a wild pass saw the visitors clear their lines.

Several times College got into good scoring positions but were unable to capitalise.

UCC's Ryan Murphy gets off his pass against Terenure College. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
UCC's Ryan Murphy gets off his pass against Terenure College. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Mid-way through the half, a great break by Murray Linn saw him link up with Cian Bohane and Bohane found a gap to send Linn in for a try which James Taylor converted.

The lead did not last long as Terenure laid siege to the College line with several pick-and-goes and their patience was rewarded when Niall O’Sullivan barged over and Jake Swaine converted to level.

With Taylor directing operations Louis Bruce made a great drive for the Terenure line and Bohane was always dangerous with ball in hand.

A great burst by Bohane saw him link up with Taylor and Harry O’Riordan to send Michael Clue in for College’s second try in the corner for a 12-7 half time lead.

College started on the front foot in the opening stages of the second half but were unable to add to their tally the closest being a penalty by Taylor which went wide.

Terenure began to grow into the game with Mick Melia, Paddy Thompson, Niall Lalor and Eoin Joyce been prominent in the forward exchanges.

The visitors hit the front on 56 minutes when Caolan Dooley found a gap to score and Swaine’s conversion made it 14-12.

A break by Bohane saw him kick ahead but the Terenure defence beat Clune to touch down.

College tried desperately to save the game but Terenure held firm.

Scorers for UCC: M Linn, M Clune tries, J Taylor con.

Terenure College: N O’Sullivan, C Dooley tries, J Swaine 2 cons.

UCC: M Linn; M Clune, H O’Riordan, C Bohane, L Bruce; J Taylor, L Kahn; S O’Hanlon, T McCarthy, B O’Connor; C Barry, R Thompson; D Feeney, R Suttor, R Murphy.

Subs: F Hennessy, J French, A Brien, M McLoughlin, E Monahan.

TERENURE: S Dardis; J Swaine, S O’Neill, C Dooley, C Croke; M O’Neill, T Schmidt; C Classen, R Smyth, L Hyland; P Claffey, M Melia; M Lalor, P Thompson, E Joyce.

Subs: L Vaughan, S McCoy, N O’Sullivan, G Morgan, C Pender.

Referee: J Erskine (IRFU).

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