’Gannon batter basement boys
Wednesday, 15 March 2017
DUNGANNON easily accounted for bottom placed Thomond without really moving into top gear at Stevenson Park on Saturday.
An early sortie with Seamus Mallon and Paul Armstrong combining well saw Tianua Poto touch down in the second minute.
Thomond bounced back with some good midfield driving but failed to prosper from the possession, scrum-half, Dean Cronin slicing a penalty on seven minutes.
Dungannon countered with a good run from Matthew Montgomery before he became the victim of a high tackle. Poto screwed the ball to the corner and following a lineout drive Glen Sinnamon acted as provider for Gerard Treanor to dart in at the corner to make it 10-0 on 16 minutes.
Going into the second quarter, Cronin found his kicking boots and opened the Thomond account with a penalty on 23 minutes.
Good work by the pack earned Dungannon a penalty with Poto going close at the goal line. When the ball was recycled there was no stopping Mark Faloon, on his return from injury, going over in the corner on the half hour.
Dungannon kept the momentum going and when Treanor was dump tackled the Thomond out-half was issued with a yellow card.
The home pack drove forward but the Limerick men survived until a class chip ahead from Treanor saw Armstrong follow up to score the bonus point try on the verge of halftime. Dungannon led 20-3.
Early in the second half Montgomery darted in for two tries in as many minutes. Armstrong converted both and Dungannon cruised 34-3 on 44 minutes. Thomond retorted with a back line movement and Mallon came oh so close to an intercept.
Things then overheated up front and, when awarded a penalty, Dungannon flung the ball wide for Peter Cashel to score in the left hand corner.
The final quarter was less intense but it did not stop Thomond getting a second yellow card.
Once back to 15 men, the gallant visitors pushed forward and eventually grabbed a consolation try per centre, Pat Ryan on 77 minutes. Sub, Alan Wallace added the extras to leave the final score at 39-10.
The result leaves Dungannon well clear of the drop zone but Thomond appear to be staring relegation in the face. Coach, Andy Hughes was pleased with the performance, saying: "In the away match we did not close the game out and allowed them to come back to six points adrift. That did not happen today."
Dungannon - Matthew Montgomery, Mark Faloon, Seamus Mallon, Paul Armstrong, Peter Cashel, Tianua Poto, Gerard Treanor, Sean O'Hagan, Daniel Maxwell, Glen Sinnamon, Stephen Todd, Peter Doran, Josh Kennedy, David Leyburn, Peter Smith, Jamie McNeill, Jonathan Black, Matthew Calvert, Jack Ravey, John Buckley.
All roads lead to Dublin this weekend when Ireland take on England in the final Six Nations match.
The latter have already won the championship but would like to see off Ireland for the Triple Crown and Grand Slam. The match kicks off at 5pm. There is just one game at Stevenson Park - Dungannon Fourths v Lurgan Seconds (K.O. 2pm)
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