- Result: Galwegians Firsts 26 - Highfield 10
- Venue: Cork on Sat Apr 13th 2013
- Competition: AIL Division 2A
Galwegians ended their League campaign season on a relative high with a bonus point win away to Highfield in Cork on Saturday. In a game played in horrid wet conditions, Wegians were facing the elements in the first-half. But they made the brighter start when they opened the scoring in the 5th minute with a try by prop Doran McHugh. The Blues had to defend against a torrent of home attacks for the next 20 minutes, struggling to clear their lines into the strengthening wind.
However they eventually lifted the siege, and the game was effectively decided in a two minute spell midway through the half. In the 25th minute, Wegians capitalised on some spilled ball by the hosts and captain Colin Conroy raced home to score a second try. And shortly after the restart, it was déjà vu as the home side were again punished for losing possession, and this time lock Anthony Ryan finished a move to get over for try number three.
Full-back Darragh Leader was wide with all three difficult conversion attempts into the stiffening breeze, but he found his range with a penalty just after the half-hour mark to give the Blues a comfortable 18-0 cushion heading towards the break. However Highfield did manage to get on the scoresheet just before the break with a try from Willie Ryan to reduce arrears to 18-5.
In the second-half Leader added a second penalty to stretch the margin to 16 points. However when stalwart flanker Ivan Muldoon was binned on 51 minutes, the hosts lifted their game and they were rewarded with a second try on the hour from Phil Lyons. The remainder of the contest was scrappy, with conditions not improving and the ball becoming a bar of soap. But the dominance of the Wegians pack was again the determining factor. And in the 75th minute their strong scrum once again provided the platform for a try, with Leader getting over the line to touch down for the bonus five-pointer.
This ensured a comfortable win in the end for the Blues who finished the season in sixth place in Division 2a. They will reflect on a season of missed opportunity where they clearly failed to deliver on their potential, with their three opening away defeats proving their undoing. But if they keep their youthful squad intact and can bring on some of their exciting under 21 players, they have every chance of dominating this division and reclaiming their Division 1 status next season.