All systems go for a re-match of the 2013 Leinster Schools Senior Cup final after holders Blackrock College were drawn against St Michael’s College in the quarter-final draw at Old Wesley RFC yesterday.
After a shaky start to their much-delayed opening round tie against CBC Monkstown at Donnybrook, ’Rock eventually broke the deadlock courtesy of a 13th minute try from David O’Connor. With out-half Seán Kearns on hand to expertly secure the bonuses on offer, before adding a routine close-range penalty 18 minutes in, Peter Smyth’s charges developed a firm grip on proceedings.
Monkstown finally opened their account with a similar effort from full-back Ben Mahon, but this only momentarily halted the ’Rock momentum. Further five-pointers from captain Nick Timoney and Cian O’Dwyer gave them an unassailable 24-3 cushion at the interval.
Monkstown battled admirably throughout the second period, but a second O’Connor try on 48 minutes (supplemented by Kearns’ fourth conversion of the tie) helped the holders to ease into the next phase with a comfortable 28-point triumph (31-3).
Their opponents in the last-eight stage, 2012 winners St Michael’s, had earlier overcome the determined challenge of Terenure College with four points to spare (17-13). With the help of five points from the boot of the reliable Matthew Gilsenan, the Ailesbury Road boys opened up a 10-3 lead, but their opponents – who included Tim Schmidt, son of Ireland coach Joe, in their squad – managed to restore parity with a fine seven-point salvo. However, a converted try by the impressive Max Deegan ultimately proved to be the difference between the two teams, and despite splitting the posts with their second penalty of the encounter at Templeville Road, Terenure were narrowly ousted in the end.
Amidst a host of re-fixtures, there was also a replay between St Andrew’s College and Castleknock College in Cill Dara, six days after their 15-15 meeting in the same venue. Castleknock’s Geoff Brookes was again on song from the boot, but Andrew’s prevailed with a 13-9 success.
Elsewhere, in Lakelands Park, St Mary’s College emerged victorious from a low-scoring showdown with St Gerard’s Bray (7-3), and will face a highly-rated Newbridge College in the next round.
Senior Cup results: Blackrock College 31 CBC Monkstown 3; St. Michael’s College 17 Terenure College 13; St Mary’s College 7 St Gerard’s Bray 3 Replay: St Andrew’s 13 Castleknock College 9
Leinster Senior Cup quarter-final draw: St Andrew’s College v Gonzaga College/The King’s Hospital; St Michael’s College v Blackrock College; Clongowes Wood College v Belvedere College; St Mary’s College V Newbridge College
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