- Result: Galwegians Firsts 10 - Armagh 26
- Venue: Crowley Park on Sat Sep 23rd 2017
- Competition: AIL Division 2A
Galwegians came crashing back down to earth in their first home fixture in Ulster Bank League Division 2A, when they were roundly beaten 26-10 by newly-promoted City of Armagh at Crowley Park on Saturday. Having won their first outing on the road at Cashel the previous Saturday, Wegians came into this game in confident mood, but they never really got going against a cuter and more efficient opposition who made their dominance pay with scores at the tight times.
Playing with a very strong first-half breeze, the visitors took an early lead with a 3rd minute penalty by Cormac Fox. The Ulstermen continued to pile on the pressure regularly breaking the first tackle, however Wegians’ defence managed to hold out until the end of the first quarter when lock Peter Starrett dived over from a rolling maul for the opening try and an 8-0 lead.
Despite playing against the elements, Wegians did have their chances in the first-half but they spurned two real opportunities. The first came from a 5m lineout which was lost in the swirling breeze, and then a blind side move from a 5m scrum ended with a wayward pass which blew their chances of crossing the line. The visitors then rubbed salt into the wounds by working their way upfield, and Fox soon added another penalty. Then just before half-time Armagh landed a killer blow when winger Andrew Willis finished off a concerted period of dominace when he crossed and ran under the posts for a converted try to put them 18-0 clear.
It was still very retrievable for Wegians at this stage who used the wind advantage to go on the attack from the restart, however they failed to take two crucial early chances. Scxrum-half Rory Gaffney launched an excellent box kick to put their opponents deep inside their 22, and despite living on the Armagh line for a passage of phases, the Blues were simply unable to cross the whitewash, knocking the ball on over the line on one occasion. They eventually opened their account through a Morgan Codyre penalty in the 53rd minute.
However the visitors gained in confidence as they comfortably withstood all that their under par hosts could throw at them. Fox then restored their 18-point advantage after the hour mark, and on 70 minutes a superb breakout from inside their 22m line and some deft handling led to Willis scoring his second try to put the game beyond the reach of the Blues.
A late consolation try from Brian Murphy converted by Codyre was a case of far too little too late, and Wegians have much to work on to improve before they take on a winless Blackrock College at Crowley Park this Saturday 2.30pm to haul themselves back into early contention.