City Of Armagh RFC Notes: A Superb Season For the U13 Squad!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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A superb season came to a slightly disappointing end for Armagh U13s last Saturday when they lost the U13 Cup Final at Ravenhill to a strong Lurgan side , conceding a late try to lose by 17 points to 12.
The final was a close affair and great credit must go to both teams for the ability and determination on show but the essential difference was Lurgan taking their chances when they got their runners into space whereas Armagh played a slightly more expansive and inclusive game , but just couldn`t take the chances created .
Lurgan settled more quickly into the game , bringing their left winger into the game at every possible opportunity .Despite some territorial gains , Armagh managed to hold Lurgan at bay and after a short period of pressure created the first real opportunity of the game when an overlap was unfortunately ignored with a try in the corner on offer . Lurgan bounced back with two tries in quick succession , firstly when their inside centre ran an excellent line to breach Armaghs first line of defence and showed great strength to hold off a couple of tacklers and go over at the posts , followed closely by their No8 making a break off the front of a line out to go over in the corner – the first of these was converted and the half time whistle blew soon after with Lurgan looking strong at 12-0 in front .
It was vital that Armagh scored first in the second half if they were to attempt a comeback , and some excellent handling and interpassing from the forwards saw Armagh held just short of the line – the Lurgan backs came up offside and a penalty was awarded but the Armagh No 10 Cormac Fox ignored the three points on offer , took a quick tap and forced his way over beside the posts . A successful conversion saw Armagh only 5 points behind and growing in confidence . The move of the match came soon after as Armagh swept the play from side to side , and some excellent passing saw winger Matthew Reaney go over in the corner – with a strong wind against the conversion was missed but it was 12-12 and all to play for . For the remainder of the match neither side could gain the ascendancy and with time running out it looked like the trophy would be shared between two very evenly matched sides . However with 2 minutes to go Lurgan gained possession just inside the Armagh 22 and a strong run from their centre saw him evade a few tackles and go over in the corner for what proved to be the winning score as in the final 2 minutes Armagh just couldn`t break through again .
While defeat is never pleasant this young Armagh team deserves great credit for their determination and the style of play they have exhibited all season and much credit also goes to the coaching team of Antoine Finn and Niall Chapman who have encouraged this attractive and expansive style .

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