Virginia RFC U14s Round Off League Season in Style
Virginia RFC U14s headed to Randlestown RFC for the last game of the regular season on Saturday knowing that only a win would keep their hopes of consecutive Ulster Titles on track. Still smarting from last weeks reverse by rivals Ballinahinch they took to the field in surprisingly mild conditions given the forecast.
The return of John Smyth gave Virginia a strong platform, and combined with James Smith and Killian Collins ensured they would dominate the scrum giving themselves both possession and a dominant field position. Their first try came early when Jamie Osbourne barreled his way over from close range, the conversion being added by Aaron Mannion. Virginia continued to press and great work at the breakdown by Robert Lochaden, and John Dolan meant their was plenty of go forward ball. Mark Gibney broke off the back of one such ruck to force his way through to touchdown. Despite their success going through the forwards the visitors were testing Randlestown out wide too. Jason Henderson at scrum half controlled the game well, and after a great link with David Gibney, full back Adam Sherriff broke through the gap to score. The hosts though were determined to give a good account of themselves, and a strong run cross field just before the break resulted in a try for them in the corner making the half-time score 17-5 to Virginia.
The second half started with a blitz from Virginia. The first try was after a great run up the line by Jack Vaughan, the second after some great hands through the backs saw Conor Nulty rewarded for his excellent performance, and the third after a powerful run through the middle from Adrian Lynch. Two conversions from Aaron making the score 36-5 and giving them clear daylight on the scoreboard. Randlestown continued to defend valiantly for the rest of the game, but towards the end tired. Ryan Kennedy fought his way through to add a try of his own, before substitute Cai Walker finished off the trys with a strong run of his own, Aarons final kick making the full time score 48-5 to Virginia.
After 16 games and just two defeats they finish joint top of Ulster Section 1, and into a play off situation to retain their League title.