REPORT Maxol Sponsored Carrickfergus RFC I XV 9 v Omagh RFC I XV 15

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Maxol-sponsored Carrick 1st XV were beaten by 15 points to 9 away to Section 2
winners Omagh in their last League match of the season on Saturday 11 April.
Although the destination of the title was already decided, and Carrick confirmed
in second place, before Saturday’s encounter, the match was fiercely contested
and tempers boiled over a few times before the end. The weather conditions were
awful, however, with a bitingly cold breeze and frequent hail showers, so
despite the intensity of the contest the rugby never reached a high standard.
Carrick were dominant in the scrum but their line-out malfunctioned for most of
the first half and, partly as a result of this, and some poor decision making,
they were not able to take advantage of the wind at their backs, territorial
dominance, a high Omagh penalty count and two (over-lapping) Omagh yellow cards.
The home side got just one try-scoring chance and took it and so led by 7
points to 6 at half-time, Carrick’s points coming from two Luke Whittall
The second half was dominated by the deteriorating weather
conditions and was marked by the high error count for both sides and a lot of
injury stoppages. A Luke Whittall penalty offset one for Omagh to make the score
10 points to 9 in the home side’s favour going into the last ten minutes but
Omagh grabbed a try when they caught the Carrick defence napping on the blind
side of a scrum with five minutes of normal time remaining. This left them
leading by 15 points to 9 and, despite more than ten minutes of injury time,
Carrick were never able to threaten the Omagh line and this remained the score
until the final whistle was blown.
A disappointing end to the 2014-15 season
for Carrick but they can take heart from the fact that they had their best
season in more than a decade, finishing second in the League and recording some
excellent wins, including those away to Coleraine, Enniskillen and Academy. For
this much credit must go to Warren McLean, Neil Hanna, Captain Johnny Cullen and
senior players Aaron McKinney and Andy Kinkaid.
The Carrick team against Omagh
A. McKinney; R. Crymble, J. Cullen(Capt), J. Sheriff(E. McBrien), P.
Simpson; L. Whittall, K. Topping; M. Smylie, N. Hanna, R. Williams, A. Kinkaid,
C. Rodgers, R. Marsden, M. Fisher, R. McGonigle.

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