Ballymoney Second XV played host to Rainey RFC in their second League game of the season and put in an outstanding performance to win by 69-5.
Following their strong League win against Donaghadee the previous week, Ballymoney instantly laid down their marker and penned Rainey back in their own half with some fine support play and ball distribution, leading to an inevitable five point lead, when winger Nigel Nevin split the Rainey defence to score a good try which was converted by Andrew Young.
A few minutes later Rainey retaliated with an unconverted try, when they broke through the Ballymoney defensive line, taking advantage of a lapse of the home side’s concentration.
The Ballymoney men did not allow this to disrupt their game plan and they came back strongly in a very determined manner to score more first half tries, the first of these by centre Aaron Brown, who dived over the opponents’ line following a period of sustained pressure and the second, moments later, by big second row Matthew Blair who drove over the Rainey line from close range.
The third and best try of the half was scored by winger Simon McCrea who, receiving the ball on his own ten metre line, took on and beat several Rainey covering tacklers to run in between the posts.
Rainey tried hard to get back into the game, but the home team’ resolute defending and eagerness to win the ball at ruck and maul resulted in the visitors playing with very limited ball. The final try of the half was also scored by Simon McCrea after the forwards seized turnover ball, freeing the backline to break at pace, and releasing him to dive over the line. Andrew Young converted two of these tries leaving the halftime score 31-5 in favour of Ballymoney Seconds.
Rainey began the second half at full throttle, pushing Ballymoney back to their twenty-two line, but the Town men protected their line with some strong tackling and rucking, and it wasn’t long into the half when the home team went on the rampage to score a further six tries.
The first came from a swift backline attack that handed Andrew Young an opportunity to cut through the away team’s defence to score between the uprights. Kenny McAneaney then scored the second beside the posts, following a weaving run by centre Soupy Linton.
Back row player Callum McDonald crowned a great afternoon’s work by adding the third superb try.
Full back Russell Irwin scored the fourth when he was put clear by the backline, and the final two tries were scored by scrumhalf Matthew Pollock and out-half Andrew Young, who sealed the afternoon’s victory.
Four of these tries were converted by Andrew Young, leaving the final score 69-5 to Ballymoney.
Team Manager Sam McAllister commented: “This was a superb team performance by the lads in all areas of the game, especially the strong running lines by the backs in attack.
“Our young team should be very proud of their ball handling and support play throughout the game.
“It is a great achievement to get maximum points again today as this is a very tough league.”
Ballymoney Second XV: R.Irwin, S.McCrea, N.Nevin, S.Linton, A.Brown, A.Young, M.Pollock, C.McDonald, A.Hewitt, J.Hegarty (Capt), A.Millar, Blair, A.Brown, K.McAneaney, D.McCord, A.McIlrath, D.Henderson.
The Second XV’s next games are on 3rd October away to Donegal Town followed by 10th October