Lead­ing trio pull clear at the top

The Irish Times - Monday - Sport - - Sports -

Di­vi­sion 1A’s lead­ing trio of Cork Con­sti­tu­tion, Clon­tarf and Lans­downe have opened up a gap on the rest of the chas­ing pack, with the de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Lans­downe in third now seven points clear of fourth-placed Dublin Univer­sity.

Cork Con are the new lead­ers af­ter end­ing Clon­tarf’s six-match win­ning streak with a stir­ring 16-13 vic­tory at Cas­tle Av­enue. Trail­ing by 10 points, the boot of Ai­dan Moyni­han kept them in con­tention, and re­place­ment Joe McSwiney’s con­verted try drew them level be­fore Moyni­han landed a de­ci­sive in­jury-time penalty.

Work­horse flanker Aaron Con­neely helped him­self to a brace of tries as Lans­downe made it five wins on the trot with a 32-15 bonus point suc­cess against Shan­non on Thomond Park’s back pitch. Ross Byrne’s younger brother Harry kicked 10 points for the vis­i­tors.

Ben Healy’s four penal­ties steered Gar­ry­owen to a 17-16 tri­umph over Terenure Col­lege. Fresh from scor­ing 22 points last week, the teenager’s right boot proved in­valu­able at Lake­lands, with the Light Blues hold­ing on as James Thorn­ton nar­rowly missed a last-minute touch­line con­ver­sion.

Epic con­test

A late missed con­ver­sion de­nied UCD the win in an epic 11-try con­test with Young Mun­ster in Green­fields. In­stead the stu­dents earned a share of the spoils with a 34-all draw hav­ing been 15 points down at one stage. UCD’s Ro­nan Fo­ley notched his fourth try of the cam­paign, and Mun­ster’s winger Dar­ragh O’Neill his fifth.

UCC recorded their first win in the top flight at the sev­enth time of ask­ing, get­ting the bet­ter of Dublin Univer­sity (28-14) in front of a large Mardyke crowd. Clos­ing tries from James Tay­lor (71 min­utes) and Matt Bowen (78) sealed the deal for UCC in what was their Colours match.

Mean­while, only two points sep­a­rate the top five sides in Di­vi­sion 1B, with Mal­one still at the sum­mit de­spite los­ing 21-11 to Ul­ster ri­vals Ban­bridge, who had tries from Ste­vie Irvine (70 min­utes) and An­drew Mor­ri­son (78).

Sec­ondrow Con­nor Smyth touched down twice to take his season’s tally to four as bot­tom side Bal­ly­mena claimed a much-needed 28-14 vic­tory over Old Belvedere. PWDLFABP 6 6 0 0 144 6 5 0 1 156 6 4 0 2 136 6 3 1 2 154 6 3 0 3 138 6 2 1 3 108 6 3 0 3 108 6 2 0 4 119 6 0 0 6 122 6 1 0 5 72

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