Schools Rugby: James Wixted hat-trick points Pres to 31st Senior Cup in rout of rivals CBC

Mardyke school grabbed the bragging rights with strong second-half display at Musgrave Park
Schools Rugby: James Wixted hat-trick points Pres to 31st Senior Cup in rout of rivals CBC

James Wixted grabbed a hat-trick at Musgrave Park. Picture: Dan Linehan

PBC 24 CBC 0 

JAMES Wixted wrote himself into the history books with a second-half hat-trick of tries to help PBC lift the Pinergy Munster Schools Senior Cup title for the 31st time at Musgrave Park on Tuesday.

While the left wing emerged as the hero, number 8 and captain Rory O’Shaughnessy and full-back Ben O’Connor, who were on the losing side last year, were central figures all through as better-balanced Pres again underlined their scoring potential out wide.

 PBC captain Rory O'Shaughnessy punches the air after his side's victory. Picture: Dan Linehan
PBC captain Rory O'Shaughnessy punches the air after his side's victory. Picture: Dan Linehan

Wixted pounced for his first in the 46th minute after O’Shaughnessy and O’Connor attacked in broken play to sweep Pres 12 points in front and one hand on the Garrett Fitzgerald Memorial Cup.

The Mardyke school surged further ahead just after the hour following a lung-bursting run down the right by O’Connor, who sprinted from his own 22 and was only halted in his tracks five metres from the line. The move finally got its reward with Wixted touching down at the Dolphin corner.

And two minutes later, Wixted completed his hat-trick after O’Connor, yet again, and centre Gene O’Leary-Kareem created the opportunity with O’Connor converting.

Pres bagged the only score in a tension-filled opening half dotted with handling errors and little continuity though the Mardyke school carried the greater threat will ball in hand.

Both sides had opportunities to break the deadlock in scoreless opening 20 minutes, Christians missing out from a promising position in a line-out close to the Pres line only to lack the required composure to capitalise as Pres escaped with a relieving penalty.

Then, it was Pres’s turn, Wixted darting down the flank before scrum-half Liam Tuohy was held short of the line when Christians were awarded a penalty to clear their lines.

But, they eventually obliged with a try from O’Leary-Kareem after 21 minutes following a spell of pressure which also yielded a yellow card for Christians second-row Michael Foy. O’Connor converted for 7-0.

Pres strengthened their grip on proceedings immediately on the resumption with another of class of 2022, Fionn Roussel, prominent in setting up another attack and after that it was the Wixted show.

 Picture: Dan Linehan
Picture: Dan Linehan

Scorers for PBC: Tries: G O’Leary-Kareem, J Wixted (3) Cons: B O’Connor (2).

PBC: B O’Connor; J Wixted, G O’Leary-Kareem, J O’Leary, T Coughlan; H Murphy, L Tuohy; M Minogue, M O’Sullivan, T McCarthy; D Noonan, C Murphy; F Roussel, R O’Shaughnessy (c), A Alderson.

Subs: M Dillon, G O’Keeffe, P Wall, O Squires, R Skuse, D Foley, O Nangle, S Kelleher, J Wiggington Barrett, L Sisk-O’Mahony. 

CBC: B Lynch; C Barrett, A O’Connell, G O’Riordan, C Foley; CP O’Shea, J Casey; S Loftus, captain, S O’Shaughnessy, D O’Callaghan; C Kennelly, M Foy; M Skelly, D Rock, O Prenter.

Subs: L O’Leary for O’Riordan injured 28, C Walsh for O’Callaghan and J O’Shea for Rock 40, G Good for O’Shaughnessy 42, M Doyle for Kennelly 53, J Barrett for Prenter 56, H Foster for Loftus, J O’Callaghan for Lynch and E Cahill-Murphy for Foley 66.

Referee: E Cross (MAR).

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