City Of Armagh RFC Notes: Power NI III XV 44 v Ards RFC III XV 14: Report Live HERE

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Armagh PowerNI 3rd XV vs Ards 3rd XV

On Saturday, Armagh PowerNI hosted a strong Ards side at the Palace Grounds. With Mark Laverty returning from injury, the young Armagh side were bubbling with confidence from last weeks win against Newry. Ards won the toss and elected to play with the strong winter sun at their backs. Armagh kicked off and the big Ards pack immediately started strong wth some big carries into the Armagh half, but with some great defence from James Knox and Stuart McMahon the smaller home pack turned the ball over and started to press with some aggressive carrying from Paul Cully, Andrew Morton and Sam Knipe. Play was now in the Ards ‘22’ and the strong running continued with Matty Allen and Robert Straghan carrying well. Armagh eventually made a break through with Stanley Hamilton braking from the scrum and beating his opposite number to score out wide. He converted this to make it 7-0.

From the restart, the home side continued the hard running with captain Chris Wallace taking a line off outhalf Andrew Knipe and then feeding Staghan who in turn fed Lewis Morton but the sun was in their eyes and unfourtunately they could not convert the pressure. Armagh turned the ball over at the next scrum and the pack took over with some strong pick and go’s from John Fletcher and Jude Parr, but Morton made the final blow corssing the line near the posts. Again Hamilton converted 14-0.

Armagh again started to pressurise the Ards pack picking the ball up from their own ‘22’ and gaining momentum eventually leading to Cully grabbing the score. Hamilton missed this one leaving the score 19-0 at half time.

At the start of the second half Armagh were put under pressure by a renewed Ards side, but their defence held strong and they managed to turn the ball over and move it wide with Laverty claiming the try. Hamilton converted 26-0.

Armagh again made their way back to the visitors half and earned a penalty with some good work on the ground from Mark Allen. Hamilton converted this to leave the scoreboard ticking over at 29-0.

Ards weren’t beaten yet, and their nippy outhalf broke the line and chipping through for their winger to score. 29-7. With the next play Ards again scored with some loose tackling from the young Armagh side they scored in the corner, able to convert. 29-14.

Armagh needed to buck their ideas up and did so with some more hard carrying from the pack and they were rewarded with a penalty in front of the posts. Wallace pointed for Hamilton to take the points and he did so with ease. 32-14.

Armagh were not to lie down yet and went on to score another two tries one of which Hamilton converted leaving the final score at 44-14. This was a solid win for the young side, but there is still room for improvement with some tough games coming up either side of Christmas.

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