Ardscoil's sensational comeback stuns Castletroy in Munster Schools Senior Cup

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent, at Thomond Park


Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent, at Thomond Park


Ardscoil's sensational comeback stuns Castletroy in Munster Schools Senior Cup

Action from Ardscoil Ris' stunning Clayton Hotels Munster Schools Senior Cup quarter-final win over Castletroy College at Thomond Park

ARDSCOIL Ris produced a sensational second half comeback racking up 40 unanswered points to power past local rivals Castletroy College 45-17 in their Clayton Hotels Munster Schools Senior Cup quarter-final clash at Thomond Park this Wednesday.

Clinical Ardscoil racked up seven tries in all to seal a coveted semi-final place.

No one could have predicted the incredible turnaround in fortunes for the competing side that was about to occur when Castletroy College had deservedly led 10-0 after 12 minutes of the opening half.

The 2008 Senior Cup winners bagged the game's opening try through their influential scrum-half Michael O'Hanrahan, who sniped over from close range, followed a bout of concerted pressure.

Out-half Sean Madden duly added the conversion and a 12th minute penalty goal to stretch their lead.

Castletroy held onto the ball superbly during that opening quarter, with their half backs keeping the ball in front of their forwards.

However, the complexion of the game changed significantly in first half stoppage time when, Ardscoil's powerful number eight Daniel Okeke gained possession on the Castletroy 10 metre line, before swatting aside several attempted tackles and touching down under the posts.

Centre Alex O'Halloran converted to reduce Ardscoil's half-time deficit to just three points, 7-10.

Ardscoil stung their opponents with two tries in four minutes shortly after the restart.

Firstly, centre Killian Dinneen showed a terrific turn of pace and great footwork as he flew up the right hand touchline from John Moloney's pass to score a splendid solo try.

O'Halloran's conversion made it 14-10. Ardscoil then stunned their local rivals with a third try soon after as full-back Lochlainn O'Keeffe touched down in the left corner. O'Hanrahan's superb touchline conversion helped his side into an 11-point lead.

The tries continued to flow for the North Circular Road side against their stunned opponents, as O'Keeffe bagged his second of the game, while second-row James Horrigan bagged a brace of five-pointers, and John Salmon also dotted down.

Castletroy College did manage a late try through second-row Cillian Toland.

SCORERS: Ardscoil Ris: James Horrigan, Lochlainn O'Keeffe two tries each, Daniel Okeke, Killian Dineen, John Salmon try each, Alex O'Halloran four cons, John Moloney con. Castletroy College: Michael O’Hanrahan try, con, Cillian Toland try, Sean Madden pen, con.

ARDSCOIL RIS: Lochlainn O'Keefe; Eoghan Collins, Killian Dineen, Alex O'Halloran, John Salmon; John Moloney, Ian Leonard; Alex Long, James White, Oskar Czyszczon; Will O'Callaghan, James Horrigan; Stephen Clery, Jack Ward-Murphy, Daniel Okeke. Replacements used: Darragh Dineen, Josh Moore, Kevin Danaher, Cian O'Reilly, Gearoid Power, Cian Moloney, Rory Desmond, Scott Fitzgerald. Replacements: Jack Barry, Gearoid Hanrahan.

CASTLETROY COLLEGE: Andrew Shanahan; Louis Cunneen, Sam Hanrahan, Jason Aylward, James Lammond; Sean Madden, Michael O'Hanrahan; Jason McCormack, Kieran O’Shea, Robert Magill; Cillian Toland, John Moloney; Sean Quirke, Cian White, Dylan McMahon. Replacements used: Jamie McNamara, Evan O’Halloran, Paul Ross, Ronan Kiely, Dean McGinn, Sam Den Dikken. Replacements: Sean O'Shea, Rory Murphy, Nesta Nyamakazi.

REFEREE: Eoghan Cross (MAR)