Well, as you might have heard by now it looks like a playoff place is almost definitely out of reach.
Following a tough game at Kilballyowen Ballynahinch managed to scrape throuigh with a twenty two points to twenty win on Saturday to clinch their playoff place and consign us to fifth place in the table. While still technically possible, We have Clonakilty at home on the 11th and then we go away to Greystones for the last league phase game of the year on the 18th, Old Crescent would have to Lose to either Highfield at home on the 11th and/or Away to Malone on the 18th and we would have to get max bonus points to be sure.
Saturdays game again had the Bruff Pack dominant, the back line willing to throw the ball around a good bit but a couple of mistakes allowed Ballynahinch to score two tries, and that’s what it was, Bruff mistakes keeping Ballynahinch in the game. To be brutally honest, many felt that this game should have been put to bed by half time, such was the dominance of the Bruff side with the strong wind at their tails but they failed to put the scores on the board when they had their opposition on the rack. With Bruff going ahead after three minutes courtesy of a Brian Cahill, They maintained possession and territory but Ballynahinch latched onto a looping infield pass from the wing to the full back to create a ruck from which Chris Stevenson broke to get try No. 1 duly converted by Ryan Bambry. Finbarr Hogans try on 22minutes followedon thirty five minutes by another mistake which allowed Ballynahinch’s outhalf Bambry in for their Second try which he duly converted. This all meant that Bruff went in at halftime down by Fourteen points to ten despite spending almost all of the first half in the Ballynahinch side of the field.
The second half started with Ballynahinch coming strong and three minutes in they went ahead after a Gareth Rourke try which gave them a 19 points to ten lead. Bruff again fought back however and two minutes later hauled the lead back in a bit courtesy of a three pointer from Cahill. 19-13. This was followed by a ten minute camping out betwen the Ballynahinch five meter and try lines which eventually led to Captain Cathal O’ Regan crossing the whitewash. The Cahill conversion duly gave Bruff the slenderest of leads but it wasn’t to last long. Three minutes later Bambry knocked over a penalty to give hinch back the lead and despite a massive attack for the remainder of the game by the Bruff team with only an ocacsional breakout by Hinch they managed to hold on to the two point lead right to the finish.
Final Score Bruff 20- Ballynahinch 22.
Bruff: David Horan, Cathal O’ Regan, Stephen Foster, Alfie Laffan, Maurice O’ Connell, Mike Carroll, Ger Luby, Peter Malone, Eoghan Maher, Brian Cahill, John Moore, John Malone, Andrew Cashman, Fionbarr Hogan, Paul O’ Brien Subs: Gearoid Ryan, Mossie O’ Donnell, Padraig Cleary, Garry Leonard