Carrick Rugby Club Notes: I XV 38 v Lisburn Rugby I XV 28 & 32 v Ballynahinch Rugby II XV 5

4 minutes, 45 seconds Read

The Maxol-sponsored Carrick 1st XV finished their League programme on Saturday 9 April with a 31 points to 28 away win against Lisburn. The victory means that, as well as completing the double against Lisburn, Carrick finish the season with nine League wins out of eighteen matches, a better record than seemed likely before Christmas. In an entertaining, if error riddled, match, there were signs of end of season defensive generosity on the part of both teams! Carrick did well playing into a stiff breeze in the first half and led by 14 points to 7 at the break.

They then failed to take advantage of the wind in the third quarter and let the home side back into the match before re-asserting themselves to win the game with a late penalty. For Carrick, the half-backs, Aaron McKinney and Michael Patterson both kicked well out of hand for most of the match and McKinney produced three great line breaks. The front row of David McKeen, Paul Greenaway and Richard Higgins put in a lot of work, both in defence and attack, and the second row pairing of Stuart Currie and Chris Ferris provided a steady flow of good line-out ball. Andy McKeen did his usual competent job of tidying up at the base of the scrum and carried more than any other Carrick player. The vwo Under 19s players, full-back Andy Armstrong and open-side Nathan Greenwood, who had made their debuts against Ballynahinch in mid-week, again put in very solid performances.Credit must be given to centre David Kirkpatrick who, although not a regular place kicker, converted all of the Carrick tries and put over the winning penalty from an awkward angle in the dying minutes of the game.
Both sides had chances in the early stages but it was the visitors who took the lead in the sixteenth minute when Andy McKeen danced over from quick ruck ball in front of the Lisburn posts. The No 8 had made the initial break himself and the move was carried on by Aaron McKinney and Craig Jordan to set up an attacking line-out to Carrick. They then took the ball through several phases before McKeen went over. David Kirkpatrick added the points from the conversion. Lisburn hit back five minures later when out-half Crothers ran back a loose Carrick kick and fed right wing Hooke with a scoring pass. Crothers converted the try. Matters continued with Carrick, thanks to some excellent kicking into the wind from McKinney and Patterson, playing a lot of the game in their opponents half. In the thirtieth minute they deservedly took the lead when Captain, Stuart Currie, forced his way over following a line-out catch and drive. David Kirkpatrick again added the points and Carrick held their 14 points to 7 lead until half-time.
The third quarter definitely belonged to the home side and they got back on level terms after eight minutes of the second half when Hooke was allowed to make ground from inside his own half, breaking a couple of tackles, before feeding Hill who scored just to the left of the posts. Crothers added the points to tie the scores. Lisburn then took the lead three minutes later when blind-side Thompson went over off quick ruck after they had once again been allowed to make too much ground from inside their own half.Crothers converted the try to give the home side the lead for the first time. This prompted Carrick to shake off their lethargy and , in the seventeenth minute, they levelled matters when Chris Ferris went over following three phases close to the Lisburn line. The attacking position had been set up by another excellent line break by McKinney. The out-half then gave Carrick the lead five minutes later when he took a quick tap penalty and virtually walked over while Lisburn were still trying to organise themselves. Kirkpatrick again put over the conversion. Lisburn were not finished however and, in broken play, their hooker Graham ran right through some very slack Carrick defence in the twenty-seventh minute to score near the posts. Crothers converted to tie up the scores.The game looked to be heading for a draw but, following another break by McKinney, Carrick were awarded a penalty with only two minutes remaining and David Kirkpatrick calmly put the kick over to give Carrick a narrow 31 points to 28 victory.
This was a satisfying end to the season for Carrick after a difficult first half to the campaign with the retirement of a number of senior players and injuries forcing them to field sides with significant changes from week to week. However, a more settled side emerged in the new year and depite one or two hiccups, the improved results reflect that.
The Carrick team against Lisburn was:
A. Armstrong; C. Jordan, J. Wady, D. Kirkpatrick, D. Crothers; A. McKinney, M. Patterson; D. McKeen, R. Higgins, P. Greenaway, S. Currie(Capt), C. Ferris, N. Marsden, N. Greenwood, A. McKeen.
On Wednesday 6 April,a Carrick side showing eight changes from the previous Saturday, including two Under 19s-Nathan Greenwood and Andy Armstring- making their 1st XV debuts, put up a brave performance before going down by 32 points to 5 to Ballynahinch II in a Conference game. The visitors more or less totally dominated the first half and only brave defence by Carrick, with Gareth Clarke particularly prominent, restricted them to three tries by half-time. The home side competed more strongly after the break and Craig Jordan, with excellent foot-work, drbbled the ball over the line in the fourth minute of the second half to get Carrick’s only try. Ballynahinch, forced to play much more of the game in their own half ,only pulled away in the last ten minutes as Carrick tired.

Similar Posts