The Ballynahinch 2s had a narrow victory over Dromore in the Junior Cup rounds
The Junior Cup – Round 1.
James Kirk reporting from Ballymacarn Park.
Final Score: Ballynahinch 2s 31 Dromore 29.
Ballynahinch continued their quest for another Junior Cup with a hard fought victory over derby rivals Dromore. The game was far removed from the dominant victory in the corresponding league fixture earlier in the season and Ballynahinch had to draw on all their cup experience to get the result.
They played into the conditions in the first half and were in full control of the match at half time as excellent ball retention and carrying from the likes of Gareth Gill, Matthew Connolly and Stuart Evans and two superb Ronan Patterson finishes gave them a four point lead at the break having managed the conditions well.
When Harry McCormick scored early in the second half to take the score to 19-8 the win looked a formality but as is so often the case at Ballymacarn Park it proved difficult to play with the conditions and some poor decision making and wayward kicking kept inviting Dromore onto the counter-attack.
They duly obliged with two quick converted tries to take a 22-19 lead and suddenly there was a game on again. Keith Dickson took the home team ahead with a try and Matthew Norton’s third conversion of the day meant that Dromore had to find another try to regain the lead.
As the game headed into the closing minutes the visitors managed to cross the Hinch line and looked set to claim a famous victory as they lead 29-26 going into injury time. However, indiscipline was to cost them as they gave away a penalty at the death.
Ballynahinch spurned the chance of a draw and kicked for the corner to go for glory and Conor Phillips delivered the winning score in the opposite corner to win a great match.
The quarter final draw contains most of the big names but Ballynahinch will be full of confidence going forward.
Ballynahinch 2s 1-17: John Dickson, Conor Piper, Harry McCormick, Stuart Evans, Matthew Connolly, Keith Dickson, Stephen Campbell, Gareth Gill, Chris Gibson, Matthew Norton, Ronan Patterson, Eamon McAnulty, Marcus Heath, Connor Phillips, Paddy Wright, Matthew Cooper, Ben McMullan.