- Result: Galwegians Firsts 19 - Dungannon 42
- Venue: Dungannon RFC on Sat Oct 30th 2021
- Competition: AIL Division 2B
Galwegians suffered a very disappointing defeat away to Dungannon on Saturday where the hosts eventually ran out easy winners running in six tries in the process.
It all started so well for Wegians who took the lead in the seventh minute from an excellent try. Following a clean lineout take, good handling gave full-back Darragh Kennedy some space and a good break made inroads, before scrum-half Kelvin Langan fed winger Conor O'Shaughnessy who chipped and gathered brilliantly to score near the left corner. The Caherlistrane native landed a superb conversion to boot and give his side an early 7-0 lead.
However it was very short-lived, as straight from the restart Langan's clearance box-kick was charged down by Gannon's talismanic flanker James McMahon who collected and easily crossed the whitewash. Jordan McIlwaine converted and all Wegians' early good work was undone.
The Blues had their chances as they were giving as good as they got, and should have gone back in front on 17 minutes, but this time O'Shaughnessy was wide with a penalty effort. Instead the hosts took the lead at the end of the first quarter when pressure forced Wegians offside, and McIlwaine put them 10-7 in front.
The game was won and lost in the second quarter. When a loose Wegians kick was gathered deep by the Gannon defence, a counter-attack caught the visitors napping and ended with McMahon taking a scoring pass to bag an early brace, which was converted again by McIlwaine.
Wegians lost their way before the break as the hosts ran in two more tries. First left-winger Caolan Mulgrew finished off well on the left, although there was more than a hint of crossing which went unnoticed by the officials. Then just before half-time McIlwaine punished some poor Blues defence when he too ran in on the left to put his side 27-7 clear, and seemingly out of reach.
For all that, Wegians had plenty of chances, spurning two 5m lineouts either side of the break. However some basic errors and decision-making was costing them. The hosts opted to make the game safe when McIlwaine knocked over a straightforward penalty on 50 minutes for a 30-7 lead.
In the final quarter Gannon scored a fifth try when they made no mistake with a well-executed lineout maul of their own, hooker Gamble getting the touchdown. Wegians saved their best till the last ten minutes, but unfortunately too late to make enough inroads. Some good momentum was finished off well by substitute scrum-half Adam Lambkin, and minutes later another strong break by Kennedy was finished off this time by his supporting and hard-working lock Ben McGuinness. Kennedy's drop-goal conversion gave the Blues two minutes to try salvage a late bonus point, but the hosts closed the game out to deny the visitors anything.
1 Diego Veragas de Los Santos, 2 Christy Reilly, 3 Mick McColgan, 4 Eoin Tarmey, 5 Ben McGuinness, 6 Kacper Palamarczuk, 7 Brian McSweeney, 8 Kieran Downey (C), 9 Kelvin Langan, 10 Adam Cunningham, 11 Conor Ó Shaughnessy, 12 Rob Deacy, 13 Andy Neary, 14 Sam Feely, 15 Darragh Kennedy. Subs: 16 Nicky Lawless, 17 Gary Lally, 18 Jack Winters, 19 John Kennedy, 20 Adam Lambkin