JUNIOR CUP RUGBY: Hinch lift cup against rivals

Ballynahinchs Callum McLaughlin tackled by Omaghs Neil Brown
Ballynahinchs Callum McLaughlin tackled by Omaghs Neil Brown

Ballynahinch IIs lifted the Junior Cup for the second time in four years with a 17- 3 victory over Omagh Academicals on Tuesday night.

All the points came in the first half in a game that failed to catch fire as both sides were guilty of handling errors.

Hinch played with the aid of the weather conditions in the first half and built up a 14 point lead at the interval scoring two converted tries and a penalty.

Omagh dominated the opening exchanges of the second half but failed to score and Hinch should have increased the winning margin but squandered a number of clear cut scoring chances in the final quarter.

The Co Down side had the first chance to opening the scoring after Omagh went off their feet at a ruck but full back Patrick Wright missed with the long range penalty opportunity.

Hinch broke the deadlock on 13 minutes, they kicked a penalty to the corner, from the lineout lock Andrew Simpson caught the ball and set up a driving maul and the forwards propelled hooker Ben Pentland over for a try with Wright converting.

Omagh got their first points after a sustained period of pressure in the Hinch 22, out half Neil McLaine slotted over a penalty on 21 minutes after Hinch prop Chris Stevenson infringed at the breakdown.

Hinch wasted a good opportunity on 28 minutes when they went to the corner with a penalty but as they were trying to set up the driving maul from the lineout they knocked on.

Wright extended Hinch’s lead with a 37th minute from in front of the posts after Omagh were punished for not rolling away from the tackle.

Hinch extended their lead at the interval to 17-3 with a try for the final play of the first half, Omagh were on the attack but fumbled the ball allowing Hinch to drive them back and force a scrum, from the set piece centre Willie Stewart made a break drew the last defender before offloading to midfield partner Callum McLaughlin and he had the power and pace to go over with Wright converting.

Hinch had replacement Gareth Gill yellow carded on 48 minutes for killing the ball, Omagh kicked the resulting penalty to the corner but knocked on from the driving maul.

Hinch squandered an opportunity to score with their first sortie into the Omagh 22 in the second half.

Stewart made a line break and the forwards worked the ball through a series of phases but conceded a penalty close to the line for going off their feet.

Wright missed with a 64th minute penalty from the 22 as Omagh strayed offside.

Hinch were guilty of wasting another scoring chance when they kicked a penalty to the corner.

Pentland controlled the ball from the driving maul but knocked on going over the line.

Omagh: A Beckett, R Mitchell, A Stephenson, A Heaney, N Brown, N McLaine, S McCain, K Alexander, M Hopton-Brown, Johnny Spourle, Jamie Spourle, D McFarland, A Longwell, J Catterson

Replacements: D Thompson, M Edgar, D Porter, L Murphy, Y Taleni

Ballynahinch II: P Wright, A Ferris, W Stewart, C McLaughlin, C Orr, R Wilson, J Murdock, S Orr, B Pentland, C Stevenson, K Morton, A Simpson, B Howard, G McKittrick, K Dickson

Replacements: B Cullen, A Gordon, B McMullan, G Gill, R Kerr.

Referee: C Busby