- Result: Galwegians Firsts 26 - Ballina 20
- Venue: Heffernan Park on Sat Sep 7th 2019
- Competition: Connacht Senior League
Galwegians Seniors got their first win of the season away to Ballina on Sunday in the Connacht Senior League, notching a winning bonus point in the process.
This game gave new Head Coach Andrew Browne a chance to blood some more new players as he fielded a few debutants. The Blues got off to a bad start conceding a converted try in the first four minutes. However they soon settled into their stride and gained a foothold, although the slippy ball made handling difficult.
Captained by lock Eoin Tarmey for the first time, they had to wait until the half hour mark before getting on the scoresheet. It came after a clever kick from scrum-half Stephen Browne set up a 5m lineout, and flanker Mike O'Donnell finished off a set of pick and goes to cross for their opening try. Out-half Dylan Hamill landed a great conversion to level the game.
A penalty for Ballina soon put the hosts back in touch, however it was short-lived as Wegians took the lead in first-half stoppage time. It followed a well-placed kick in behind the defence from Hamill and winger Sanz Sibande was on hand to gather and cross for his side's second try, again converted by Hamill to give his side a 14-10 half-time lead.
As in the first half, the hosts opened the second-half scoring, this time with another penalty to reduce the margin to a single point. the Blues were now on top and at the end of the third quarter they landed a killer blow with their third try.
It came from another series of pick and goes following a secure lineout, with substitute Abe Afalobi getting on the scoresheet this time. Hamill again converted to give the Blues a two-score lead at 21-13. They had a chance to make the game safe when they had another attacking lineout late on. However when reduced to 14 men, they had to endure a late scare when the hosts scored a converted try to leave it a one-point game entering added time.
This young Wegians side showed great composure to see the game out, and they had the final say when winger James 'Junior' Kennedy crossed for the bonus score to give the Blues a well-deserved win.
Next up for Wegians is a tough one at home to Buccaneers at Crowley Park on Saturday 14th 3.30pm.