U16s Secure Hard Fought Victory Over Strong Omagh Opposition.
Overnight rain left the Omagh pitch in soggy conditions despite bright and dry conditions on Saturday morning. Virginia knew they’d need to match the bigger Omagh team with aggression if they were to keep their winning run going.
The visitors started the game on fire, with Mark Gibney and Robert Lochaden hitting every breakdown with all they had, and the ball being flashed wide through David Gibney to Paddy Gordon, whose great run was well supported by Conor Nulty who crashed over for the opening try. After that the next period was all Omagh. They camped for a long time in the Virginia twenty-two, but despite their best efforts they couldn’t break the Virginia line superbly led by Adrian Lynch. Then in a flash, a sneaky bit of robbery by Niall Carolan saw him run the length of the field to score Virginias second try and deflate the Omagh side somewhat. Despite the size disadavantage Virginia were comfortable at the set piece, with Jamie Osbourne, Killian Collins, and Ryan McGuigan giving a stand out performance in the front row of the scrum. This possession and more quick back play from John Dolan and Cormac Monaghan almost saw a third try, but the resulting ruck saw Thomas Sheridan cap a stand out performance as he barged over to touchdown to end the half. Two conversions from Niall made the half time score 19-0.
Omagh again started the second half strongly, with Virginia again forced into some desperate defence, but as the half wore on the threat dissipated and the visitors gained better field position. Fresh blood was introduced into the pack, with James Smith, Luke Morris, Diarmuid O’Reilly, and Ryan Moloney all giving good accounts of themselves. As Omagh started to tire space appeared out wide and again Paddy offloaded for Conor to score again. Luke Doyle and Alfie Jackson came off the bench to freshen up the back line, both keeping the tempo going. A fantastic move off a line out saw Cai Walker just held up as the game drew to a close. A very creditable performance from the whole squad, with a final score of 24-0, and a 100% record still in tact.
Next week sees the squad in the road again as they travel to Monaghan RFC.
Virginia U14s Suffer First Loss in South Ulster League
Virginia travelled to Omagh to play their sixth game in the South Ulster League. A few key players were missing due to injury, but Coaches were convinced they had the players to produce a good result.
Virginia were the first to get on the scoreboard after 10 minutes. It arrived from great forward play by Gordon Lochaden & Darren Kavanagh, the ball was passed out wide to the backs where eventually a try was scored by Malachy Walker who also converted. Sadly, five minutes later when putting in a fantastic tackle to stop Omagh scoring, Malachy had to be replaced due to injury, and was replaced by Killian Smith. Virginia tried to keep Omagh at bay with some great tackles by Jack Carroll & Rian Stafford but they scored the next try, and It wasn’t long after Omagh had scored once more. Virginia dug deep, but were finding it difficult with decisions going against them and after a hard first half they trailed Omagh 24-7.
There was a change at half time as Declan Burns replaced Aidian Kiernan. Virginia were first to score in the second half after good play by the forwards, the ball passed out to Nathan Tobin, who burst through the middle to touch down. Virginias confidence started to grow and it wasn’t long until they added to the scoreboard. A great ball was passed out to the backs for Tyrone Tynan to score in the corner, duly converted by Patrick Sheridan to bring them back within 3 points. The next score was a fantastic try after the ball was robbed by the forwards in the Virginia half, passed to Nathan who went through three missed tackles to score under the posts. Patrick converted again to make it 3/3 and Virginia led by 4 with 11 minutes left on the clock. After a terrible first half was it going to be Virginias day after all? Sadly it wasn’t meant to be as Omagh piled on the pressure keeping Virginia in their half, finally getting over the whitewash for a winning try, making the final score 31-28 to the hosts.
Squad: Darren Kavangh, Gordon Lochaden, Eoin Bogan, Matthew Buyers, Conan Fitzpatrick, Patrick Sheridan, Glen McCabe, Oscar Erikson, Jack Carroll, Killian Smith, Nathan Tobin, Malachy Walker, Ben Curran, Tadgh Barry, Cameron O’Reilly, David O’Reilly, Declan Burns, Rian Stafford, Aidian Kiernan, Aaron O’Dowd, Tiernan Walsh.