HOLDERS Pres overcame a strong Rockwell College challenge to qualify for the semi-final of the Pinergy Munster Schools Junior Cup at Musgrave Park on Wednesday.
The champions, led by scrum-half Frankie Og Sheahan, son of former Munster and Ireland hooker, Frankie, had a fine blend of power in the front five, mobility in the back-row and plenty of talent behind, as well.
Pres struck first for the opening try after 10 minutes following a spell of pressure in the Rock 22.
Right-wing Michael Browne popped up on the left only to be held short of the line at the Sundays Well corner.
The Cork still managed to pilfer the Rock line-out and flanker Cormac Bohan crashed over from close range with Daniel Murphy converting for 7-0.
The Tipperary’s response was immediate and impressive, a barnstorming run by centre Danny Morris only halted by a determined Daniel Mellerick tackle, but the Rock were in a promising position from where flanker Jonah McCarthy barged over with Sean Kovacs converting 7-7.
They missed a couple of opportunities of edging ahead and Pres capitalised to close out the half with a couple of quick-fire tries.
Rockwell lost wing Gavin Neville to a yellow card three minutes from the break and Pres took full advantage with a try from prop Fionn O’Sullivan, 12-7.
And it got better for the Mardyke school with a third try in almost the same spot, number 8 Tom Murray taking a quick penalty and proving unstoppable with Murphy adding the extras to leave it 19-7 at the interval.
Rockwell dominated the early second-half exchanges and while Pres defended their line well the pressure eventually told with a try from prop Ian Ryan, converted by Kovacs to reduce the lead to four points after 38 minutes.
Pres hit back to surge further in front with a Murphy penalty from in front of the posts before Bohan bagged his second try in the 45th minute, pouncing on a loose ball on his own 10m line and sprinting clear to touch down for a 27-14 advantage.
They closed out the tie on the front foot even though Rockwell were always game and willing and almost claimed a third try in injury time only to be held up on the line.
Tries: C Bohan (2), F O’Sullivan, T Murray Cons: D Murphy (2) Pen: D Murphy.
Tries: J McCarthy, I Ryan Cons: S Kovacs (2).
S Clarke; M Browne, D Murphy, C Hill, D Mellerick; O Healy, F Og Sheahan; D Sheehy, J Healy, F O’Sullivan; O Dillon, C Bruhn; C McLoughlin, T Murray, C Bowen.
R Twomey, R Cahill, M Fitzgerald, D Ryan, R MacFarlane-O’Shea, O Healy, D O’Leary, L Neenan, B Kelleher, B O’Callaghan.
J Stokes; M Fitzgerald, D McCarthy, D Morris, G Neville; C Molony-Ryan, A Russell; J Owens, R McMahon, I Ryan; B Phillips, S O’Brien; J McCarthy, Mateo Gutierrez, S Kovacs.
E Thompson, B Molumby, D Lambe, S Tooman, R O’Brien, A O’Sullivan, K Barry, J Kelly, P Hanrahan, N Brennan.
C Dona (MAR).