T he game started with City of Armagh 2XV using the slope and a diagonal breeze. After the team trying to play too much rugby in their own 22, the Armagh forwards made inroads into the Ballyclare half with Jonathan Morton and Con Oliver making strong carries.
On 7 minutes with quick ball from Harry Doyle at 9, Kyle Faloon stepped inside his marker to slice through and beat the covering defender 35 metres out to score a good try. He added the conversion to put Armagh 7-0 ahead. The front row of O’Hagan, Sleator and Andrew Morton were giving the big Ballyclare forwards plenty to think about with Clarke and Magillan competing well in the lineouts.
Ballyclare converted a penalty to close the gap to 7-3 and shortly after on 30 minutes, Robbie Faloon went on a diagonal run to touch down in the corner for an unconverted try, 12-3 to Armagh. With no further scoring, the half time whistle blew.
After the restart, on 45 minutes Ballyclare lost possession on the half way line for Paul Campbell to kick ahead and chase to the line. Matthew McSorley was up in support to pick up and dive over for a try out wide. Kyle with a well struck kick into the breeze added the conversion, 19-3 to Armagh. Ballyclare started to use the elements and slope to gain territory and on 50 minutes they used their big forwards to rumble over at the posts, 19-10 to Armagh.
There was a sense of urgency now with the visitors realising that this game was still to be won. With Gareth McNeice urging his players on, Armagh went on the attack into the Ballyclare 22 where a high tackle by a home forward gave Kyle an easy 3 points in front of the posts, 22-10 to the visitors. Ballyclare didn’t give up and added a further try to finish the scoring, 22-15 to Armagh.
This was an error strewn performance with numerous handling mistakes evident throughout, however on the positive side the team were well worth the away win.
Photo Credits: Ken Redpath