Match report: Ards U16s 12 v Letterkenny 34
By STEPHEN NUTT
Ards U16s lose to Letterkenny in Ulster Carpets Youth League Plate quarter final
Ards U16 12 v Letterkenny 34
Ards U16s welcomed Letterkennny to Hamilton Park on Saturday in the quarter final of the Ulster Carpets Ulster Youth League Plate competition with both sides looking to end the season on a high.
The opening ten minutes saw both teams pressing on each other’s try line, but both defences held out. It was Letterkenny who broke the deadlock with a quick pass to the wing, creating a overlap that saw a Letterkenny player touchdown for a converted try. Ards 0 v Letterkenny 7
Ards replied with long periods of pressure in the Letterkenny half; Letterkenny absorbed this pressure and a long clearing kick by their full back saw them regain the ball and cross the Ards line again, much against the run of play. Ards 0 v Letterkenny 12
Ards again took the game to Letterkenny and some stout defending kept Ards out. With the penalty count mounting, Letterkenny were reduced to 14 men with only a few minutes of the half remaining. Unfortunately Ards were unable to capitalise before the whistle and the half time score remained Ards 0 v Letterkenny 12.
The second half started with Ards on the offensive and the penalty count again mounting against Letterkenny. Ards’ efforts were rewarded when prop Mitch Young went over for a hard fought score, the conversion was successful. Ards 7 v Letterkenny 12
The game was end to end before Letterkenny got a second wind and ran in unopposed for a further two tries both conversions were missed. Ards 7 v Letterkenny 22
Ards did not give up and were denied a certain try when the referee called play back for an injury to a Letterkenny player with the line beckoning for Ards winger Chris Harris.
The Ards players were confused with this decision and could not rebound from it, with fatigue setting in Letterkenny made full use of the wide Hamilton Park pitch and the Letterkenny full back ran in with ease for a converted try. Ards 7 v Letterkenny 29
Showing great character the Ards team rallied again, Captain and stand in out half Callum O’Hanlon, picked up a loose ball and looked to be away for an easy try before play was called back for an off the ball tackle. The resulting penalty was quickly taken by Letterkenny, but the Ards defence were ready; unfortunately an injury saw full back Ethan Martin leave the pitch and Ards reduced to 14 players, but this did not stop them. With
A perfectly weighted kick from O’Hanlon saw winger Harris collect the ball and run in to score in the corner, the conversion was missed. Ards 12 v Letterkenny 29
Again Ards kept up the pressure, but Letterkenny turned over the ball and took play to the Ards line. Ards repelled this attack but a Letterkenny player forced their way over from the ensuing ruck, the conversion was missed. Final score: Ards 12 v Letterkenny 12