East Kilbride edge past league strugglers Oban
Oban ..................... 8 East Kilbride ....... 10
East Kilbride Rugby Club were grateful to make the long journey back from Oban with four points in the bag following victory in an encounter lacking in skill if not commitment.
The large EK travelling support, most of whom had made a weekend of it, deserved something more inspiring but had to make do with a win to keep them in touch with the leading pack after five rounds.
Oban had endured a torrid start to the season but were almost back to full strength for East Kilbride’s visit and therefore put up far more of a fight than they had in their preceding league encounters.
In truth though, EK should have won far more comfortably than they did and were guilty of not always playing smart.
The Glencruiten pitch carries a hefty slope and too often EK sought to play expansive rugby when they should either have kept it tight and walked up the hill or booted the leather off the ball.
A short range Aidan Stott try was the highlight of the day for the assembled masses and EK were grateful for a missed Oban conversion to hand them victory. This Saturday East Kilbride travel to bottom of the table Irvine.
Meanwhile, the reserves were even shorter of players than the norm and great credit again goes to player/ manager Bruce Beggans for turning up to face league leaders Glasgow Accies with only 13 bodies. Unsurprisingly, EK were second best by a long, long way.
Numbers were also short for some of the Secondary school sides. Although the 18’s did start their game it was called early due to a serious injury to one of the Cumnock boys.
The Under-16’s beat the same opposition 17-7 in a tough encounter. Good work by the pack twice gave scrum-half Rory Blackwood enough of a gap to sneak over for first-half tries, with David McGiven adding a second after the break before Cumnock pulled one back.
The contest at Under-13 level was even tighter, EK edging it two tries to one. Cumnock dominated the first period and it was only resolute EK defence, Sam Munday and Callum Smith prominent, that kept the scoreboard blank after 20 minutes.
EK really stepped it up in the middle period though, particularly in the forwards where second row pairing Lewis Thompson and Kyle Hawkins dominated exchanges. Mark Neilson opened the scoring following great handling by Ri Murphy and Carlos Orenos, Captain Dylan Gardiner converting, before Murphy grabbed the deciding score.
The Under-15 girls followed up last weekend’s first ever victory with a comprehensive win at Kilmarnock.
Travelling with a squad of 16 Ek were too strong for the Ayrshire side and offered a pleasing mix of power, pace and teamwork.
Hannah McMahon and Captain Kirsty Ritchie both grabbed hattricks, while Ellie McKenna, Taylor Bell and Mirren Morton all scored twice. Scrum-half Paige Muir grabbed one as did Cavan Ryan, outstanding in only her second game. Kilmarnock Allan Glens Garnock Carrick EAST KILBRIDE Annan Greenock Wndrs Cambuslang Stewarty Oban Lorne Helensburgh Irvine P 6 5 5 5 5 4 5 5 6 5 4 5 W 5 5 5 4 3 2 2 1 1 1 1 0 L 1 0 0 1 2 2 3 4 5 4 3 5 D DIF PT 0 18226 0 20925 0 39 23 0 12720 0 6 15 0 -33 11 0 -26 10 0 -62 7 0 -66 6 0 -150 6 0 -80 5 0 -146 1
Hard going Patrick Quigg in action for EK reserves against Accies