BLEAK WEEKEND FOR BALLYCLARE RUGBY I XV AS PROMOTION HOPES DAMAGED: U19 XV suffer 2 defeats, II XV game halted but IV XV win a tight game

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BALLYCLARE 1st XV play Donaghadee at the Cloughan on Saturday and had hoped they could put more pressure on the Fishermen in the race for second place in Qualifying 2 and possible promotion. The Dee the previous week had suffered a second defeat and still have four very tough fixtures ahead. Ballyclare went to Woodlawn to meet local rivals Carrick but with two key men unavailable,a serious shoulder injury to flanker McKinstry early in the second half plus an inept performance they suffered a big setback in a 26-14 defeat.
In the first half the visitors played up th eslope and into the breeze and Jackson had a good run leading to a penalty. Clotworthy`s kick seemed good as both touch judges raised their flags only to be ruled out by the referee ! But the Clare attacked again with good play from Collie Morrow and another penalty was converted by Clotworthy for a 3-0 lead. Another run by Jackson who was one of the few visitors to impress threatened but lacked support. McKinney pushed the Carrick pack up to the Clare 22 and really they should have scored.

The home side broke through a brittle Clare mid field defence and got a try to lead 5-3. Good work from the home pack allowed McKinney to breach the Clare defence for a second score which was converted for a 12-3 lead. McKinney the home fly half kicked deep forcing Russell to clear and a break by the Clare backs ended with Weatherup going in for a try but the conversion rebounded off the post.A surge from Logan led to a penalty and from well out and into the wind Clotworthy did well to slot it home which left it 12-11 at the interval to Carrick.
Early in the second half Clare flanker Graeme McKinstry sustained a bad shoulder injury and had to go off for hospital treatment. They had a penalty but Clotworthy was wide from a good position. Collie Morrow despite also being injured kicked to the corner but the pack began to struggle and skipper Logan was yellow carded to leave them two men short. Carrick had a try disallowed but Marsden then broke clear to score on the left and the conversion put the home side 19-11 clear. A run by Weatherup forced a penalty which Clotworthy kicked to reduce the lead to 19-14.The visitors backs produced a late run but the ball was lost and McKinney counter attacked for a late final try which was converted to give them a deserved win and tarnish the hop;es of the visitors .It was 26-14 to Carrick at the end to give them two wins during the week as they beat Grosvenor 14-7 on Wednesday night.
Ballyclare G.Byers;J.Reid,J,Jackson,G.Clotworthy,G.Weatherup;I.Russell,C.Morrow;A.Boyd,A.Wylie,C.Coburn;I.Heaney,R.Boyd;N.Moore,W.Logan (capt),G.McKinstry

Ballyclare U.19 XV played Ards in the Nutty Krust Floodlit Trophy at Portadown on Wednesday night and were unlucky to go down 19-13 as they had two tries strangely disallowed.In the first half Ards did start well and got in for an unconverted try after only five minutes . But the Clare boys hit back as centre and top scorer Craig Wallace raced clear to go over for a try converted by Chris Harvey which put them 7-5 up. The Co.Down side countered with a score from their backs to lead 12-7. But before half time time two successful penalties from Harvey gave the Clare a 13-12 lead.
In the second half Ballyclare dominated the lineouts through Jonny Gillan but failed to break a resolute Ards defence. It was at this stage that they did get over the line but sadly the official failed to give the decisions and a late penaty to Ards allowed the latter to run in a try and the conversion put them 19-13 ahead . Coach Robin Byers was disappointed not only by the disallowed scores but also said that there were some missed tackles in mid field.
Then on Saturday at the Cloughan the U.19 XV played Portadown in the second round of the U.19 Plate. They went down 17-5 with the sole try coming from scrum half Beasant but again missed tackles allowed the visitors to get in on three occasions.
Ballyclare Seconds took on Cooke 2nds in a Junior1 league game at home and were 7-0 up when the match was halted as the referee sustained a torn leg muscle.At this stage of the season perhaps the result will stand though only 21 minutes had gone—but neither side seems to be facing relegation.
The Clare fourths played Malone 5ths but each club had travelled to the opposite venue and so it was the Clare lads who ended up racinc up the motorway to the opposit e venue again. In a scrappy affair the Fourths came out on top 24-18. The fourths had tries by Brian Kane,Noel Smith,John Wasson plus one by the U.19hooker as well as two conversions from skipper Wasson.
1st XV v Donaghadee (home)–Prior to this game club President Ian Morrow has asked that as many past Presidents as possible and their wives should attend the pre-match Lunch;
2ndXV vBallynahinch 3rds (home); 4thXV v Instonians 4ths (away) .


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