herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

Roscrea just cross the 'Bridge

Cistercian College Roscrea set up a novel first time final with Belvedere in the Leinster Schools Senior Cup on St Patrick's Day at The RDS, writes Des Berry.

They made it by the slimmest margin 20-19 against a battling Newbridge in yesterday's Donnybrook replay that could have gone either way.

It was the Kildare school which struck the first real blow by breaking away for hooker Conor Johnson to show electrifying speed to make it 5-3 in the 11th minute.

This prompted a period of domination from Roscrea's forwards to build up a 20-5 lead on the back of tries by flanker Mattie Keane, number eight Dan Trayers and left wing Joe Murphy.

Newbridge were never likely to fade away.

They took comfort from the brilliance of their centre Jimmy O'Brien. Whenever he was involved anything looked possible.

That looked to be the case when he plunged to the line and converted to leave it 20-12 at the break.

Jake Howlett's expert line onto O'Brien's inside ball reduced the gap to one in the 61st minute, and made for a tension-packed finish in which Roscrea just held firm to make the decider.

SCHOOLS RUGBY

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