Trinity 48pts – Buccaneers 14pts, 7th March 2015
Trinity returned to a sunny and warm College Park on Saturday and produced possibly their best performance of the season. Buccaneers were up for the fight and fielded a team loaded with Connacht players. Both teams played a physical but wide open game plan which led to some breathtaking running rugby. The score line might look like Buccaneers did not put up a fight but they were clearly up for the physical contest as their defence in the first half portrayed.
Trinity made a positive statement off the opening kickoff when they attacked for just under three minutes, only to be called back for a forward pass metres from the visitor’s line. They gained a penalty, kicked it into the corner and a line out drive put them in for an early try.
The Students continued to attack. Wing Tim Maupin broke free from deep after Angus Lloyd had put him away with some wonderful skill from a turnover. After a big hit by No.8 Tom Ryan, Maupin beat several defenders to put Michael Courtney away who in turn fed the outside backs-the ball was spilled, but regained and Tom Ryan was put in under the posts. 12-0 up and into the brisk breeze Trinity looked good for a big win. But Buccaneers came back and scored from close in after some heavy pressure on the student line. 12-7 at half time and the University team still had a huge challenge in front of them.
In the second half Trinity upped their game to a new level- a level that Buccaneers could not continue to keep up with. Out half Tommy Whittle seemed to have the ball on a piece of string as he hit the corners with Ronan O’Gara precision. From this good field position Trinity helped themselves to some well taken tries. Brian Du Toit was the first on the score sheet in the second half when he came off the back of a driving maul and incredibly kept his feet pumping to score out wide.
Next up was wing Tim Maupin who took a quick tap penalty and cruised through the defence to score by the posts from 50 metres out to give Trinity a bonus point for four tries.
Trinity attacked and counter attacked. Brian Du Toit got in again after his back row partner pounced on to a loose ball off a Buccaneers line out- Du Toit did the hard yards from 3 metres out!
Trinity then had to withstand a massive all out attack by the proud Athlone based team. The tackles were huge and the energy high as the students put their bodies on the line. They were camped on their line for 15 minutes before Buccaneers got in after a quick tap penalty on the line.
Trinity then decided the best way to defend was to keep the ball. This they did, scoring two long range tries:the first, when replacement hooker Patrick Finlay broke out of defence, the backs moved the ball to centre Michael Courtney who broke down the wing before passing inside to full back Conor Kearns who rounded the last man to score under the posts; and the second in similar vein when prop Tom Collis put in a nice counter ruck that turned the ball over, flanker Nick McCarthy sidestepped several defenders before releasing Michael Courtney. Again Courtney kicked a long grubber type kick, and right wing USA Eagle Tim Maupin out-sprinted the cover getting a fortuitous bounce just at the right time to stroll in under the posts.
This was a great win by the students who are still in with a chance of promotion if they can keep winning. They take three weeks off from league action before they play Corinthians on March 28th. They play Oxford University at 5pm on March 18th in College Park-not to be missed!
15 Conor Kearns, 14 Tim Maupin, 13 Michael Courtney, 12 Paddy Lavelle,11 Jack Fitzpatrick (Ruadhan Magee 20)10 Tommy Whittle, 9 Angus Lloyd (Brian Slater 55), 1 George Walsh, 2 Richard Halpin (Patrick Finlay 65), 3 Tom Collis (Andy Keating 45), 4 Jack Burke, 5 Raef Tyrell (Nick McCarthy 45),6 Pierce Dargan, 7 Brian Du Toit, 8 Tom Ryan
In other club games
Lost in College Park to St Marys 19-13, in a game where they had come back to 14-13 with a few minutes to go. Because of this loss Trinity now have to play Clontarf in College Park on Sunday to stay in the Metro 1 league for next season.
Trinity U20s Premier XV
Took the short trip out to Stradbrook to play Blackrock College. They played some tremendous running rugby to win out 48-10. They now take runner up in the Leinster league JP Fanagan and gain a home quarter final for the All Ireland U20s championships.
Lost to Old Wesley 44-20 in Donnybrook on Thursday night.