Presentation College Athenry 31
Jesus and Mary Secondary School Enniscrone 22
An excellent five-try attacking display carried Presentation College Athenry to the Emerging Schools Senior Cup title in the Sportsground as the Galway students got the better of the challengers from Enniscrone.
In an open, engaging decider in front of a large and vocal crowd, the Athenry school, who had previously tasted defeat in this season’s league final, recovered from a five-point half time deficit to run in three second-half tries and take the crown.
Pres took the lead after only three minutes as Irish underage international Hugh Lane dived over after a great break from his centre partner Aaron Martyn. Luke Geraghty’s conversion made it 7-0 but Enniscrone hit back soon after as lock Jarlath McMahon pounced on a Pres turnover to score.
The Sligo students hit the front on the 20-minute mark as strong carries from the impressive Alan Duffy and Conal Duffy laid on a try for flanker Fergal Boland. Sean Farragher equalised with Pres’ second try in the corner but Jesus and Mary took back the lead before half-time, McMahon’s second try sending them in at the break leading 17-12.
Pres had the help of the wind after the restart and they went back in front with a try from hooker Andre Duffy. But again Enniscrone responded, McMahon completing his hat-trick in the 55th minute after a super break from substitute forward Darren Finnerty.
That left it 22-19 but Pres had much the better of the final quarter. They retook the lead when Lane capitalised on a spill from Enniscrone to run in his second try and made safe the title with their fifth try from substitute Barry Callanan, who blocked down a clearing kick and touched down.
PRES ATHENRY: Craig Higgins, Ronan O’Donoghue, Hugh Lane, Aaron Martyn, Sam Cowman, Luke Geraghty, Sean Farragher; Luke Thompson, Andre Duffy, Cathal Farrell, Jack Murphy, Darragh Browne, Aaron Connaire, Cian Naughton, David Gilhooley.
Replacements: Ronan McDonagh (for Thompson 57), Barry Callanan (for Cowman 61).
JESUS AND MARY ENNISCRONE: Bradley Nealon, Sean Finnegan, Eoin Hallinan, Josh Ennis, Ben Carnegie, Daniel Cuffe, Conal Duffy; Nigel Carden, Eoghan Rua McGowan, Alan Duffy, Andrew Blakeney, Jarlath McMahon, James Boland, Fergal Boland, Shane Sweeney.
Replacements: Rian Grimes (for J Boland 6, inj), Darren Finnerty (for F Boland 40), Daniel Clarke (for Hallinan 60), Oisin Cawley (for Finnegan 71), Ronan Wilson (for Blakeney 73).
REF: Joe O’Donnell