Crescent 5 Christian Brothers College 17: Christian Brothers College gained some revenge for their defeats at the hands of Crescent in the first round of the Munster Schools Senior Cup for the past two years as they emerged impressive winners of yesterday’s campaign opener at Thomond Park.
Christians hadn’t managed a single score in the two previous cup meetings of the sides, and so travelled to Limerick with a whole lot to prove. This time they were equal to the task, coming back from a potentially disastrous start to emerge convincing winners after a positive performance of forward strength and decisive midfield running, especially in the second-half.
It certainly was an afternoon to remember for Christians centre Alex McHenry, who scored one superb individual try and finished off a late attack for a second. He was just one of a number of backs on both sides to display admirable footballing skills, and none more so than the Christian full-back Liam Coombes who used his imposing physique to telling effect on a number of occasions. And nobody answered the call up front more than hooker Gordon Good.
Overall, it was a display that must have delighted coach Neil Lucey, all the more because his side found themselves five points behind within 60 seconds of the start. A knock-on from the kick-off led to an attacking scrum for Crescent which saw Jack Lyons, Matthew Hanly, and Billy O’Hora make ground before releasing right-wing Glenn Dickenson for a splendid try in the corner.
Christians took some time to settle but reduced arrears with a penalty by James Taylor and were happy to turn over 5-3 in arrears. However, the strength of their bench told as the second-half developed, and they duly took the lead on 53 minutes when winning possession from a lineout that saw McHenry scorch through a gap in the Crescent defence for a terrific try that Taylor converted.
Christians were forced to stoutly defend their five-point lead before raising the siege and creating the opportunity for McHenry to strike for his second try that was again converted by Taylor.
D Hurley; G Dickenson, C Nash capt, B O’Hara, J Fehilly; M Hanly, J Lyons; J Henchy, J Barry, T Connolly, F Coleman, J Blake, N Mulcahy, P Hickey, B Falloon capt.
C Phillips for Fehilly half time; S Leahy for Falloon, injured, 58.
L Coombes; O Conway, J Harrington, A McHenry, I Casey; J Taylor, R Cassidy; J Humphries, G Good, C Leahy, R Thompson, S Duffy, R O’Neill, R Hyde, D Feeney capt.
J D O’Hea for Conway half time; C McHugh for Humphries 42; D Barry for Thompson, injured, 58; S Bushe for Good, injured, 60; E Cahill for Hyde, injured, 68; C Sisk for Cassidy 69.
T O’Donoghue (MAR).
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