Defending champions CBC advanced to the semi-finals of the Clayton Hotels Munster Schools Senior Cup with this 11-point win over Castletroy College.
Castletroy go into the quarter-finals, where they will meet Limerick rivals St Munchin’s.
Musgrave Park was unusually quiet for this round two game as Christians’ students were banned from attending by the Munster Branch over a pitch invasion following their victory over Pres in last year's final.
Lining up without last year’s Cup-winning out-half Cian Whooley, Christians found themselves on the back foot in the opening quarter. Smart tactical kicking by Castletroy scrum-half Jack Oliver, son of former Scottish scrum-half and Munster Elite Player Development Officer Greig, forced errors, which he capitalised on with 3rd- and 17th-minute penalties.
The Castletroy defensive line was quick off the mark, too, with John Toland and Jason Aylward making big hits when Christians began to get a foothold. However, Luke McAuliffe’s piercing carries began to tell, with a succession of penalties leading to a close-range kick at goal for Shane Buckley, which he pulled wide.
CBC came again in a dominant second quarter and two tries in the five minutes before half-time gave them a 10-6 lead. Jack Morehead made the initial break for both tries. For the first, he passed to David Kiely who appeared to be faced with a dead-end but skinned the full-back along the touchline to race in from halfway.
Then, two carries each from captain Finn MacFhlannchadha and Patrick McBarron sucked in defenders, with Buckley’s pass sending George Coomber into the corner. Buckley missed both touchline conversions.
It looked like McAuliffe had their third when he got over after the break but he was held up. However, waves of CBC pressure eventually told as John Moloney and Aylward saw yellow cards for slowing down the ball and a deliberate knock-on respectively, with referee Richard Horgan awarding a penalty try for the latter offence.
13-man Castletroy hit back from the restart, forcing a penalty which Oliver slotted. The gap was back to eight, 17-9.
It didn’t stay there long. CBC pinched a ruck ball and Coomber sent Aaron Leahy away for a long-distance sprint to the corner. Coomber’s conversion attempt hit the post.
Just as the Limerick school looked set to return to 15 men, Jamie McNamara was yellow carded, their third in little over 10 minutes, with Coomber adding the three points.
Dogged in their resistance, Castletroy kicked two penalties to the corner and were rewarded at the second time of asking, with replacement Nesta Nymakazi getting a push-over try. Oliver kicked the tricky conversion to narrow to 25-16.
But another substitute, Alan McDonald, put it to bed diving under the posts from close range, with Coomber adding the extras to make it double scores.
Castletroy never gave up with Oliver adding a stoppage-time try, before hitting the post with the drop-kick conversion.
J Murphy; A Leahy, G Coomber, J Morehead, D Kiely; S Buckley, A O’Mahony; A O’Regan, L McAuliffe, C Hanlon; J Morrison, J Aherne; P McBarron, R O’Sullivan, F MacFhlannchadha (capt).
A Treacy, S Rall, A McDonald, R Kelleher, M O’Connor, T McCarthy, C Lavin, J Moylan, W Waterman, R Shalloe.
E O’Halloran; L Cunneen, S Hanrahan, J Aylward, M Lyons; M O’Hanrahan (capt), J Oliver; R Magill, D McGinn, J McCormack; S Den Dikken, J Moloney; J Toland, S Quirke, J McNamara.
N Nymakazi, P O’Shea, A Walter, O O’Shea.
R Horgan (MAR).