Trinity 43pts – Old Wesley 17pts; 20th February 2016
Trinity hosted Old Wesley on Saturday at College Park last Saturday. Coming into the game both teams were in the “top four” of the AIBL Division 1B. Trinity played with the wind in the first half and simply blew Old Wesley away running up a 29-3 lead that could easily have been 40+ if they took all their opportunities.
The tempo and accuracy at which the Students played, was great to watch. They incredibly had the bonus point for four tries on the board in 35 minutes.
Old Wesley took the lead in the opening minutes with a well-struck penalty from points scoring machine wing Barry McLaughlin. The home team then took over proceedings for the rest of the half. From a line out on half way the students went ten phases with hooker Patrick Finlay carrying strongly three times, Full back Conor Kearns cut the line before a miraculous off load to *8 Tom Ryan for a wonderful score.
The game really flipped in the students favour when Old Wesley centre Ngwinni looked to have made a break only to be harshly called for ‘crossing’, Trinity scrum half Angus Lloyd quickly tapped the penalty and fed right wing Tim Maupin who beat six defenders before dotting down under the posts for a spectacular individual effort 14-0 Trinity.
The third try followed closely after another break by the ‘on fire’ Tim Maupin who was judged to be held over the line. Trinity received a five-metre scrum and on the second attempt pushed the massive Wesley pack over their line for a hard earned try richly deserved for the forwards hard work.
Trinity clearly on a roll, seemed to break open the visitors defence any time they attacked. Outside centre Michael Courtney made a beautiful outside break and fed left wing Max McFarland a 15M pass, McFarland broke free to pass back inside to Full back Conor Kearns who dotted down, only for the referee (who was in line) to judge a slightly forward pass from Courtney.
From an Old Wesley line out, second row Raef Tyrell got up quickly to pick off the throw, the ball was moved quickly to Paddy Lavelle who cut inside the defence to run 40M before feeding Michael Courtney who passed in turn to Full back Conor Kearns who ran in a fabulous try.
After some more heavy pressure on the Wesley line, Out half Jack McDermott kicked a penalty ras the time ran out on the first half, to give his team a 29-3 lead.
In the second half Trinity continued to attack, and scored an absolutely glorious counter attack try when centre Paddy Lavelle ran back to retrieve a long kick, he ran the ball back, scrum half Angus Lloyd continued the attack before feeding flanker Brian Du Toit who swerved around three tackles before feeding one handed to *8 Tom Ryan who powerfully ran in for his third try and to give his team an impressive 35-3 lead.
To Old Wesley’s credit this game could have gotten really ugly, but they dug in and dominated the last 25 minutes of the game. They scored two well-taken tries to give the score a bit of respect.
Trinity were not to be denied the last score, and from a well worked training field pattern replacement centre Ruadhan Magee broke free to put Tim Maupin in for his second try.
This was an important win for the students against in form and very accomplished opponents. Trinity are now four points behind St Mary’s with four games to play. Ballymena slipped up against Blackrock and are now seven points behind the students.
The top of the 1B league table now looks like this;
P W D L PF PA Pts
St Marys 14, 13, 0, 1, 370, 216, 58
Trinity 14, 11, 0, 3, 380, 202, 54
Ballymena 14, 10, 0, 4, 351, 228, 47
Old Wesley 14, 7, 0, 7, 298, 309, 36
Only the top team goes straight up to 1A, with 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the table playing off with second from bottom of 1A for the runner up spot over a semi final and Final. Trinity’s remaining games are against resurgent UL Bohemians next weekend in Limerick, followed by a hugely pivotal game at home to Ballymena. They take three-week break from league action that includes the small matter of the Colours game V UCD (Wednesday 23rd March in College Park), to come back to play top team St Mary’s on April fools day in Templeville road. They take another week off before they finish their regular season with a game V Blackrock in College Park.
Trinity team; 15 Conor Kearns, 14 Tim Maupin, 13 Michael Courtney (Ruadhan Magee 50), 12 Paddy Lavelle, 11 Max McFarland, 10 Jack McDermott, 9 Angus Lloyd (Brian Slater 50), 1 Eric O’Sullivan, 2 Patrick Finlay (Matt McCann 30), 3 Andy Keating (Fintan Murphy 70), 4 Jack Burke, 5 Raef Tyrell (Cian O’Dwyer 45) 6 Nick McCarthy, 7 Brian Du Toit, 8 Tom Ryan;